Fort Lauderdale offers an excellent setting for personal watercraft rides. Jet skis are a lot of fun, but they can also be dangerous. Unfortunately, more than a few people in Fort Lauderdale have experienced the downside to jet skis.
When an operator does not understand how to drive the watercraft safely or is under the influence of alcohol or drugs, Florida law lets you hold the at-fault party liable for your jet ski accident injuries.
Hurt swimmers or jet skiers can file insurance claims or personal injury lawsuits to get the money they need to pay:
The team from the Law Offices of Anidjar & Levine can review your case and explain the strength of your suit. Call a Jet ski accident lawyer in Fort Lauderdale, FL today at 1-800-747-3733 for your free case evaluation and consultation.
Recoverable Damages in a Fort Lauderdale Jet Ski Accident
Depending on the injuries and damages you suffer, and the severity of your injuries, you may be able to recover considerable costs if you can prove another person’s negligence caused your jet ski accident and injuries.
Compensatory damages, also known as economic damages, cover the financial expenses and losses you suffered because of the accident and your injuries. They vary based on your unique situation, but may include:
- Medical bills
- Ongoing care costs
- Lost wages
- Future lost income and benefits
- Out-of-pocket expenses
- Repair or replacement of your jet ski
Pain and Suffering Damages
Noneconomic damages are also available through a jet ski accident claim or lawsuit. Most commonly, they come in the form of compensation to help you recover from the pain and suffering you endured because of the accident.
Understanding Liability in a Fort Lauderdale Jet Ski Accident
Personal watercraft are very popular in Florida, particularly in Fort Lauderdale. According to The Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission, there were more than 118,000 registered personal watercraft in the state in 2016. Carelessness, negligence, and other similar issues led to 132 injury accidents statewide in 2016, a rate of one accident per 769 jet skis. In general, there are three types of liable parties in these crashes.
An Individual Owner and Operator
Most personal watercraft accidents occur because of negligence on the part of an individual. Often the perpetrator is the owner/operator of the craft, but it can also be the owner and/or the operator if they are different people. For example, if an owner allows a friend to use their watercraft knowing the friend has been drinking, both parties may be liable for your damages.
A Rental Company
Many people falsely believe they cannot hold a rental company liable for the injuries they suffer in an accident because they signed a liability waiver. However, we can often challenge these waivers and help our clients successfully file a personal injury claim.
Individuals usually feel more secure taking on a company in a lawsuit when they have an experienced law firm backing them. If this is you, a jet ski accident lawyer in Fort Lauderdale, FL is just a phone call away: 1-800-747-3733.
You can hold a jet ski rental company liable when they:
- Failed to maintain the rented craft
- Ignored the fact that the renter was apparently drunk or drugged
- Were unable to provide clear instructions to the renter
- Did not cover necessary safety precautions with the renter
- Acted carelessly in another way that led to the accident
The Manufacturer of the Personal Watercraft
In some cases, a defective part, dangerous design, or missing warning may lead to the injuries suffered in a personal watercraft accident. When this occurs, we can often help our clients hold the company who made the Jet Ski, Sea-Doo, Waverunner, or other similar craft liable for your damages. We are not afraid to file a claim or a lawsuit against any of the major manufacturers if they marketed a defective product.
Proving Negligence and Recovering Damages in a Florida Watercraft Crash
Our law firm must prove that the negligent person or company did four things:
- First, they had an obligation to act in a certain way, to prevent accidents and keep you and others on the water safe.
- Second, they failed to uphold this obligation.
- Third, their failure led to the accident and your injuries.
- Fourth, you suffered financial losses in addition to your injuries.
We can help you recover the full amount of compensation you deserve after an injury accident off the Fort Lauderdale coast. We can help you identify the liable party and conduct a full investigation into your accident.
When you enlist the help of our injury lawyers, we will:
- Contact any witnesses
- Interview experts to help us understand how the accident occurred
- Collect any and all available evidence
- Build a solid case on your behalf
- Prove the value of your compensatory damages
- Calculate the estimated value of your pain and suffering damages
- Send a demand letter to the liable party’s insurer
- Negotiate a fair settlement with the insurance company, when possible
If the insurance company refuses a fair settlement agreement, or if the liable party does not have insurance coverage for this type of accident, we can pursue a personal injury or defective product lawsuit. When we take this type of case to court, we present our case for full compensation to the Judge and jury. Then, we ask them to award the damages you deserve.
Time Limit on Filing a Lawsuit in a Fort Lauderdale Personal Watercraft Accident
Florida law gives you four years to file a lawsuit after a personal watercraft accident. You have 48 months from the date of the crash to take legal action against the liable party.
While this does not technically apply to an insurance claim, we always recommend filing your claim within this window, if not faster. Having the option to litigate a case provides the motivation many insurance companies need to offer a fair settlement during negotiations.
Talk to a Jet Ski Accident Lawyer in Fort Lauderdale, FL About Your Case Today
The personal injury team from the Law Offices of Anidjar & Levine can help you understand your options for compensation after a Fort Lauderdale personal watercraft injury accident. We offer free case evaluations and will tell you if we believe you have a valid case against the party whose negligence caused your crash. Contact a personal injury lawyer today for your free case review: 1-800-747-3733.