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Getting Into an Accident on a Boat. How Do You Know Who is Liable?
Boating is a year-round recreational activity in Florida. Countless boaters take to Florida’s many lakes and rivers for relaxation, rest, and fun in the sun. Tragically, these supposedly pleasant trips can end in severe or deadly boating accidents if other boaters or parties fail to take the safety of other people while out in the water.
Who Can You Hold Legally Responsible for a Boat Accident?
You may hold an individual or company that injured you or killed a loved one in a boat accident. But before you can pursue compensation for your boat accident-related losses and file a claim against them, you must first figure out who and what exactly caused the accident.
More importantly, you must prove that their actions are negligent under Florida law, such that the at-fault party owed you a legal duty of care, and they violated that duty. Their negligent actions must have also resulted or contributed to the boating accident, and you were injured due to the accident. In most cases, multiple parties may share fault and liability for boat accidents. These parties can include the following:
- The boat operator
- The boat owner
- The rental company
- The marina owner
- The boat manufacturer
If the negligent party was on the clock when the boat accident occurred, you may hold their employer liable for your injuries and recover compensation from them. Such cases are common in boat accidents involving yachts, massive commercial boats, and rental boats that employ deckhands, captains, and other workers.
In addition, if a negligent passenger caused the boat accident, you can hold them responsible for your injuries. When a passenger violates or ignores the safety rules, they endanger the safety of everyone on board.
I Signed a Waiver; What Now?
In some cases, people are forced to sign waivers before they can rent a boat or other kinds of watercraft. Rental companies use these waivers to avoid liability in the event of an accident. Fortunately, courts will only enforce clear and concise waivers that must explicitly include the following:
- The specific type of harm you are waiving
- The specific activities and risks involved
- The specific party you are agreeing to waive liability against
Due to the sneaky language of these waivers, it is usually up to a judge to decide whether or not to enforce them. When you come to your consultation with our Riverview boating accident attorney, we can review the waiver to determine how it will affect your claim.
Consult With a Seasoned Riverview Boating Accident Attorney
Getting injured in a boat accident isn’t enough to prove that you are entitled to get compensation from the party that harmed you. You must have solid evidence to link their negligent actions to the accident and your injuries. Let us do that for you so you can focus on healing. To set up your case assessment with the Riverview boating accident attorney at Mickey Keenan, PA, and learn how we will recover the compensation you deserve, fill out our online form or call our office at 813-871-1300.