PASSENGER COMPENSATION FOR INJURIES
MARITIME INJURY LAW v. STATE PERSONAL INJURY LAW
At sea, just about anything can happen to workers, and when it does, maritime law is there to protect their rights. But when it comes to passengers, guests, visitors, or anyone else not employed in the maritime industry or at least not employed by the defendant, then an injury that occurs on a maritime vessel, at port, offshore, or on the high seas may or may not qualify as compensable under maritime law. In some situations, state personal injury laws may apply. Maritime law is complex, but at the Law Office of Neil T. Lindquist, we strive to explain it and help you understand it a bit more so that if you have been injured as a passenger on any water vessel, such as a cruise ship, you’ll be more informed about what to do.
WHAT COMMON DANGERS DO PASSENGERS FACE WHILE ON BOARD A SHIP?
Being a passenger on a cruise ship or other vessel presents some unique and inherent dangers which are compounded by being at sea. Some of the most common sources of personal injuries and illness include:
- Negligence by cruise ship staff
- Defects in vessel
- Unsuitable or unkempt vessels
- Slip and fall accidents
- Large doors slamming
- Falling overboard
- Swimming pool accidents
- Accidents during shore excursions
- Exposure to toxic chemicals
- Physical and sexual assault
- Food poisoning
If you have been injured on a boat or any other maritime vessel, platform, etc., you need to take action immediately to protect yourself and preserve your legal rights. Your first line of order is to seek medical assistance and then contact an experienced maritime and personal injury lawyer. At the Law Office of Neil T. Lindquist, we devote our time and resources to personal injury matters, including those that occur on the high seas.
VESSEL OWNER’S OR OPERATOR’S OWE PASSENGERS A DUTY OF CARE
Vessel owners or operators owe a duty of care to all passengers aboard their vessel. This duty of care encompasses many aspects of your time on ship and it requires vessel owners and their staff to:
- Provide passengers with a reasonable amount of security to protect them from physical harm. This includes protecting passenger from criminal activity such as physical and sexual assault.
- Ensure the ship, its equipment and its crew, are in a seaworthy, safe and reasonable working condition. This means that crew members must be adequately trained to perform their assigned duties and all the equipment on the vessel is in proper working order.
These duties of care are mandated by federal statutes and general maritime law.
GENERAL MARITIME LAW
Claims for negligence under general maritime law and state personal injury laws are similar in that:
- There must be a duty of care;
- That duty must have been breached;
- The breach must have factually and proximately caused the damages; and
- The damages must carry a dollar value.
When you suffer personal injuries for another party’s negligence, you may have a cause of action to recover from them. At the Law Office of Neil T. Lindquist, we will speak to you for free, evaluate the circumstances of your injury to ensure that these four elements can be satisfied, and aggressively pursue the responsible party. You can receive compensation for your personal injury regardless if the cause was the product of negligence or intentional harm.
When a passenger suffers a injury, it is not always the consequence of a breached duty by the vessel owner or operator. If you slip and fall in your stateroom’s bathroom, the fault may rest on you unless the design of the bathroom (i.e. clogged drain, lack of a shower mat) or some other defect made the room dangerous or uneven. If the injury was caused by some condition of the ship, then it’s the responsibility of the vessel owner to properly compensate you for their negligence. Oftentimes, your injury may be caused by a combination of factors involving a third party and the vessel’s crew. It’s important that you speak to an experienced maritime attorney so that all liable parties are identified. While each injury presents a separate set of facts and parties, potential parties whom you can hold responsible include:
- The owner of the ship or other water vessel.
- The company operating or chartering the ship or other water vessel.
- The company from where you purchased your ticket.
- A third party, e.g., the ship’s contracted physician (medical malpractice).
MARITIME PERSONAL INJURY ATTORNEYS FOR PASSENGERS IN WASHINGTON
Passengers on cruise lines or other water vessels are subject to enclosed, dangerous conditions that they are not subject to while on land. A vessel owner or operator is responsible for each passengers’ health and safety. So when accidents occur and they are responsible, they try to avoid paying for their negligence by hiring corporate attorneys to get them out of it. This is exactly why you need the guidance from attorneys like ours at The Law Office of Neil T. Lindquist. We know the law, we represent your rights, and we have the resources to pursue and develop your claim successfully all the way to resolution.
The attorneys at the Law Office of Neil T. Lindquist have over 50 years of experience in in both personal injury law and maritime law. If you are a passenger who was injured while on a vessel, you may have a claim. We can and will help you recover the compensation you deserve.
Free Injury Consultation
If you or a loved one were injured in a maritime accident, we can connect you to lawyers for a free consultation about compensation that may be available to you.