Should I contact an attorney for a boat accident?
A boating accident attorney is trained to help the victims of boating accidents recover damages for boating accident injuries and related medical expenses, pain and suffering, loss of wages, and any damage to their property. This is a special area of law, and, depending on the circumstances, might require a boating accident attorney who specializes in Admiralty or Maritime laws. The laws governing boating accident cases are complex varying by location and circumstance. Therefore it is important to have a boating accident attorney on your side as you seek to recover damages.
When a boating accident results in death or disappearance (indicating injury or death) of an individual, injury that requires treatment beyond first aid care, or property damages totaling more than $500, a Boating Accident Report must be filed within a certain period of time. If injury or death is involved, the report must be filed in the first two days following the incident. If only property damage occurs, the report must be filed within ten days. If a boat operator fails to report the accident in a timely fashion, leaves the scene of the accident, or fails to provide first aid where needed, these are pertinent facts that should be discussed with a boating accident attorney.
Operator negligence is the number one contributing factor to boating accident injuries. Inattentive, careless, reckless, inexperienced, speeding or alcohol-consuming boat operators are the cause of most boating accidents. Each year, over eighty percent of boating fatalities occur on boats where the operator has not had any boating safety instruction. Almost 40 percent of boating accidents involve alcohol. Just like other vehicle regulations, it is illegal to operate a watercraft under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Eighty-five percent of boating accident victims who drown are not wearing lifejackets. More than eighty percent of these deaths could be avoided with the proper use of personal floatation devices.
If a family member has been killed as a result of a boating accident where operator negligence was at fault, you may wish to speak to a boating accident attorney who can help you sort through the legal aftermath of your trauma. The victim’s dependents and beneficiaries may be eligible to seek compensation for damages (within a certain time frame) in a wrongful death suit. A boating accident attorney can help maximize your legal interests and can see that you are justly compensated for your losses.
What to Do
If you or a loved one has been injured or killed in a boating accident, it may be in your best interest to consult a boating accident attorney who has intimate knowledge of boating laws and knows how to help you win your case.