Florida has more boating-related accidents than any other state, per the Coast Guard’s most recent report. With these accidents come serious injuries and unexpected fatalities. If another party was responsible for your boating accident, you can and should hold that party accountable. A boat accident lawyer in Fort Lauderdale from the Law Offices of Anidjar & Levine can help.
You can connect with our team today at your earliest convenience.
For a free legal consultation with a boat accidents lawyer serving Fort Lauderdale, call (800) 747-3733
Do You Need a Lawyer’s Help to File a Boating Accident Claim or Lawsuit?
While a boat accident lawyer is not required to file a claim, the process is complex and can seem impossible to anyone who has not previously navigated the process.
Our boat accident lawyers are well-versed in the laws and rules that apply to boat accident claims in Fort Lauderdale. These claims are complex and specialized. We will investigate your claim to determine who is liable for your injuries.
We will collect the evidence needed to prove your claim, including medical bills, accident reports, and proof of your lost wages. We will deal directly with the insurance company, so you do not have to.
Fort Lauderdale Boat Accidents Lawyer Near Me (800) 747-3733
How Are Boat Accidents Different from Car Accidents?
There are quite a few differences between car and boat accidents. First, the rules are different, although the basic tenet of driving/boating safely applies in either situation. Your case might be subject to maritime or state laws depending on where your accident occurred.
Second, jurisdiction matters. The accident location might determine where you must file your claim or suit.
Our attorneys have decades of experience handling boating accident claims. We know how these cases differ and can help you understand the process.
How Long Do You Have to File Your Boat Accident Lawsuit?
In comparison to other states, having four years to file a boat accident lawsuit seems like a generous amount of time. Florida Statutes §95.11 generally gives you four years from the date of your boating accident to file your lawsuit in civil court.
It is also the same statute that mandates wrongful death lawsuits, except in those instances, you have two years from the date of your loved one’s passing to file. Florida Statutes §95.050 may extend how long you have to file your lawsuit, but you should not make any assumptions without confirming with a lawyer first.
The more time that passes between now and the accident, the fewer options you have. It is imperative that you file your case on time.
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We Can Prove Fault and Liability for Your Fort Lauderdale Boat Accident
The person who acted negligently and caused you harm is at fault, but this can be difficult to prove in a boat accident. In a car accident, you have roadways with clearly marked lanes. You have signs and traffic signals. It is easier to determine who had the right-of-way and who was at fault. On the water, this can be more difficult to establish and prove.
Our team will investigate and determine all at-fault parties in your case.
We Can Prove Negligence
All watercraft operators in Florida have various obligations, including:
- Operating the vessel in a reasonable and prudent manner
- Having regard for other vessel traffic
- Following posted restrictions
- Observing and exercising caution in the presence of a divers-down flag
- Not endangering people or property
If a boater does not uphold these obligations, they can be considered “negligent.” Negligence is an important legal concept. If you can show that someone was negligent, you can pursue a claim against them.
For the purposes of a boating accident in Florida, you would need to show:
- The other party had a legal duty toward you, meaning that they had an obligation to drive with care.
- They violated (breached) this legal duty either due to carelessness or recklessness.
- This breach caused your accident.
- Your injuries were the result of the accident.
Our team of boat accident lawyers in Fort Lauderdale can prove these elements and build a case in accordance with their findings.
Using a Hypothetical Scenario to Explain Negligence
Tony was returning his speedboat to its place in the marina. In an attempt to impress his friends, he violated the posted speed limit signs inside the marina. He lost control of his boat and crashed into another boat that was traveling at a safe speed, below the posted speed limit. Several people on the other boat were injured, as well as some people on Tony’s boat.
Tony had a responsibility to operate his vessel in a reasonable and prudent manner. He failed to meet these responsibilities, which renders him guilty of the criminal violation of careless operation of a vessel. In addition, he operated his vessel in willful disregard for the safety of others, which could make him financially liable for any damages arising from a civil case.