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So What Is Maritime Law?

Maritime law is an important niche practice in Florida and other nearby water-bordering states. Maritime, or admiralty, law is what governs our common waters. Cruise ship accidents, private boating accidents, or jet ski accidents leading to personal injuries may invoke this area of the law. Lawsuits involving waterways can be very difficult to litigate because there is often a question as to where the lawsuit should be filed. If an accident involves a boat or commercial streamliner registered in Florida, chances are that your injuries will likely be remedied there as well.

Who Owns the Water? Jurisdictional Matters

One of the essential components of a lawsuit is jurisdiction; that is, where the lawsuit should be filed and what court has to address your concerns. If you live in Florida but cause a car accident in Georgia, for instance, you may face a lawsuit in the state of Georgia even though you do not live there. Jurisdiction is fundamental, but can be very complicated. In cases involving waterways, it might matter where the vessel is registered, where the ship was returning from or going to, or even where the passengers are from.

International matters might be even more vexing, but in the end the idea is to find the proper jurisdiction to bring the lawsuit and move forward from there.

Types of Injuries

One of the other things you have to do when filing a lawsuit is allege the nature of the injuries sustained and the amount of money (at least an estimate) you think you deserve for your injuries, medical costs, and inconvenience. Some common incidents that lead to claims in Miami include:

  • Accidents on cruise ships;
  • Accidents on private boats;
  • Slipping and falling on boats;
  • Accidents due to mechanical failures;
  • Personal injuries sustained from jet ski or boat collisions; and
  • Driver inexperience or intoxication.

Often, injured persons will claim they deserve compensation for a number of things, including but not limited to:

  • Pain and suffering;
  • Medical bills;
  • Provable future medical expenses (PT, rehab, medications, etc.);
  • Compensation for disfigurement or permanent disability;
  • Loss of wages due to loss of work;
  • Property damage; and
  • Other quantifiable expenditures.

The amount of money you may receive invariably depends on the circumstances of the accident, the nature of your injuries, and your future of recovery. Owners of vessels, cruise ship management companies, captains and pilots, maintenance staff, and even janitorial staff all have responsibilities to you as their client, guest, or patron on their property. This obligation extends to keeping the premises reasonably safe and in working order; a failure to do so may lead to you being injured, which gives you the right to file a lawsuit and seek damages in many instances.

Miami, Florida Maritime and Boating Accident Lawyers

Due to the complexity of maritime law litigation, it is important to consult with an attorney you can trust before taking legal action. If you or anyone you know has been injured on the water, whether from a cruise ship or on a private speed boat with friends, our experienced maritime and boating accident litigation attorneys at Alan Goldfarb, P.A. have the knowledge to guide you through the process. We will work tirelessly to ensure you are compensated for injuries that others caused and strive for the best possible outcome. Contact our Miami offices today to learn more about your legal rights.

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