Lives are at risk of serious injury or worse when preventable marine accidents occur due to someone’s negligent behavior. If you were hurt or suffered the loss of a loved one in this way, our Birmingham boating accident attorneys could help you build a compensation case.
Your Options for Pursuing Compensation After a Boating Accident
If you are injured while boating, you might be entitled to compensation from the person responsible for causing the accident. In some cases, both federal and state laws may apply to your case, making the legal process more complex. As such, it can be beneficial to discuss your claim with an attorney who is familiar with maritime and admiralty laws to determine a course of legal action.
Following a boating accident, you have several ways to pursue compensation. Initially, you will likely seek compensation from the at-fault party’s insurer if they have coverage (boating or home insurance policies may apply). However, Alabama law does not require boat operators to carry liability insurance. Some marinas require third-party liability, though. Further, if a boat is financed through a bank, it will likely be insured.
If the at-fault party does not carry liability insurance, our boating accident lawyers can help you pursue compensation by filing a personal injury lawsuit.
For a free legal consultation with a boating accidents lawyer serving Birmingham, call 877-562-0000
Potentially Liable Parties in a Boating Accident
Many factors can cause watercraft accidents, so determining liability is not always straightforward. As such, your attorney working in Birmingham can investigate the cause of the boat accident to determine who is responsible. In addition, liability for a boating accident can fall to more than one party in some cases, which can include:
A boat operator may be liable if they behave negligently. For example, a boat driver could be negligent because of the following factors:
- Boating with a blood alcohol content of .08% or more (BUI)
- Operator inattention
- Failure to maintain adequate distance
- Exceeding maximum capacity
- Inexperienced boating
- Excessive speed
- Improper lookout
Boat owners are responsible for the upkeep, maintenance, and safety of their vessels. They must also ensure the boat is safely and responsibly operated. If an accident occurs from the boat owner failing to follow the proper safety guidelines and rules, they could be liable for resulting injuries.
Boat Rental Companies
If a boat rental company fails to properly maintain their leased boats, safety equipment, or operational equipment, they could be financially responsible for any accidents caused.
Boat Manufacturers and Part Manufacturers
If a faulty part or component caused the accident, the manufacturer of a particular part might be held liable for damages. Examples may include mistakes made during the design, engineering, testing, manufacturing, or assembly.
A passenger could also be liable if they cause the accident by behaving reckless, criminal, or negligent.
Birmingham Boating Accident Lawyer Near Me 877-562-0000
Compensation Available in a Boating Accident Lawsuit
The compensation you could recover by filing a boating injury lawsuit will depend on several factors, for example:
- The severity of your injuries
- The circumstances of the accident
- The insurance coverage available
Alabama is a pure contributory negligence state. So, if you are apportioned any blame for the accident, you are barred from recovering any damages. Unfortunately, insurance companies often take advantage of this rule and will seek to shift blame as a tactic to avoid paying out. As such, it can be beneficial to work with your attorney, who can defend you against claims that you contributed to the accident.
As a general guide, compensation in a boating accident lawsuit is intended to cover losses including:
- Your current and ongoing medical bills
- Rehabilitation costs
- Lost wages
- Compensation for reduced earning capacity if your ability to work is affected
- Pain, suffering, and inconvenience for the physical and emotional injuries caused by the accident
- Property damage or replacement
You Could Pursue Wrongful Death Damages After Losing a Family Member
If the accident caused the tragic loss of a loved one (and was caused by someone else’s negligence, omission, or wrongful act), surviving beneficiaries of the estate could file a wrongful death lawsuit to recover damages.
How a Boating Accident Lawyer Serving Birmingham Can Help You Build a Case
The most important way we help our clients is by gathering and preserving the evidence that can show another party’s liability. Therefore, we leave no stone unturned when we investigate your case.
Our personal injury lawyers also manage communications with insurers so you are not caught off guard and make statements that could harm your case. Other ways we support our clients include:
- Guiding you through the legal process to make it as stress-free as possible
- Answering your questions and keeping you informed of the progression of your case
- Managing every aspect of your case’s administration following the correct procedures
- Calculating the financial impact of your injuries and other related losses
- Negotiating for a fair settlement with the at-fault party’s insurers
- Reviewing settlement offers
- Taking your case to court where necessary
When Should I File My Case?
Alabama law allows two years for injured parties to begin civil proceedings in a boating accident lawsuit per AL Code §6-2-38. The same timeline applies when filing a wrongful death lawsuit.
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Call Us for a Free Consultation With Our Boating Accident Attorneys
With almost four decades of experience helping injured people to access the financial recovery required to rebuild their lives, we want to help you, too.
If a boating accident harmed you or a loved one, starting your claim can begin by calling us to discuss your situation and learn about your legal options. From there, our team will manage every aspect of your case while you focus on your recovery. To find out more, contact the team at Cory Watson Attorneys for a free initial consultation.