When you’re on a cruise ship, safety is always your priority. But what if something goes wrong and you get injured? What should you do, especially if the accident wasn’t your fault?
Aronfeld Trial Lawyers are tried-and-true. They understand the hassle and pain of being involved in a cruise ship accident. If you’re caught up in one, here are some tips from their lawyers on what to do:
This may seem obvious, but in the heat of the moment, it’s easy to get carried away. If you can, stay calm and think about the situation logically. By so doing, you can make better decisions and avoid worsening the issue. Besides, most accidents on cruise ships are relatively minor.
Notify a Crew Member
Inform a crew member of your predicament. They should help you or, at the very least, put you in touch with someone who can. Plus, the cruise liner should have a first-aid kit handy in case you need it.
Seek Medical Help
If you’re injured, get medical attention ASAP. Whether that means seeing the ship’s doctor or getting evacuated to a hospital on land, don’t delay getting the care you need. Even if you feel okay, remember that the adrenaline of being in an accident can mask your injuries, and it’s better to be safe than sorry.
If your injury necessitates continued medical assistance, avoid neglecting such care as your condition may worsen. Otherwise, even if you get redress, it may not be enough to cover all your medical bills. And if you need to file a lawsuit against the cruise line, documentation of your injury will be key to proving your case.
Rope in Witnesses
If anyone witnessed the accident, ensure to get their contact information – names, emails, and phone numbers. These people can act as witnesses should you decide to file a case against the cruise ship company.
File an Accident Report
The cruise ship will have a procedure for reporting accidents. Follow it to the letter. This report will come in handy later if you need to file a claim or lawsuit. By creating a record, you have written proof of what happened. Such a report also allows the cruise liner to look into the matter and can help them improve their safety procedures.
If you can, take photos or videos of the accident scene and your injuries. Such information serves as valuable evidence if you take legal action. Usually, you need evidence to prove the cruise ship is liable for your injury. If you can, get tangible evidence – ripped clothing, bruises, or broken objects – to help build your case.
While at it, write down your recollections of the accident. Having a detailed account can also help your case. Also, get a copy of the ship’s logbook, which contains information about accidents on board. That way, you can find out if there have been any similar accidents in the past.
Contact a Cruise Ship Accident Attorney
Get in touch with an experienced cruise ship accident attorney. They will offer guidance on what to do next and help protect your rights. If you need to file a claim or lawsuit, they can handle all the nitty gritty and ensure a seamless process.
Plus, your attorney can examine your cruising contract to check if you have a case against the cruise line. The contract may contain provisions that work against you, so it helps to get a professional opinion. For instance, some contracts have a time limit for filing a claim, meaning you’ll need to act fast. Similarly, your attorney can identify any holes in your evidence and help you gather more.
An attorney can also check the forum selection clause in your contract. This clause dictates which court you need to use in case of a dispute and may not be in your best interest. If that’s the case, your attorney can file a motion to have the court transfer the case to a more favorable court.
Besides, maritime laws are complex, and having a professional who can interpret them is key to increasing your chances of success. They can also:
- Assess your legal options
- Protect your rights
- Prepare documentation
- Handle communication with the other party
- Negotiate on your behalf
- Represent you in court if push comes to shove
Talk to an attorney for a case evaluation. A cruise ship attorney typically handles similar cases and understands the steps you need to take. Having them in your corner can increase your odds of receiving redress for your injuries.
You can get a favorable outcome by knowing how to handle a sticky situation. Hopefully, this information will come in handy in the unlikely event your plans go sideways.