Boating Accident Lawyer

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Boating Accident Lawyer

Boating is an area covering many types of use, including holidays, recreation and work. If you have sustained an injury while on a boat in an accident that wasn't your fault, you may be entitled to claim boat injury compensation.

The impact a boating accident can have on a person's life can be very different. The team of legal experts at JMW Solicitors will guide you through the entire legal process, providing the advice and support you need in order to make a successful claim for a boating accident.

To make a boat accident compensation claim, contact us today to discuss your case in more detail. We will talk you through the next steps and answer any questions you have. Call us 0345 872 6666, or if you would rather we contact you, complete our online enquiry form and we will give you a call back as soon as we can.

How JMW Can Help

We have a team of skilled solicitors who understand how to handle boat accident compensation claims. We work on a no win, no fee basis and will be able to provide initial advice on whether you have a case. All of our help is given on an impartial basis, with your needs in mind, and we will be proactive and professional.

The injuries caused by boating accidents are diverse, with damage varying in severity. Examples of major injuries include brain damage, loss of limbs, broken bones and spinal injury.

Some accidents may appear minor at first but develop into something more serious. Our aim is to give you the very best chance of securing the compensation to which you are entitled following an injury on a boat.

Our team of expert solicitors will be with you every step of the way. We will keep you updated regularly on the progress of your case and take on the legal responsibility so that you can focus on your recovery.

Causes of Boating Accidents

There are many reasons why you may suffer an injury while on a boat. These are some of the most common causes we have seen as personal injury solicitors:

  • A boat collision, either with another boat, a dock, or a geographical feature
  • A slip or fall due to wet surfaces
  • Ineffective safety equipment or lack of lifejacket provision
  • Waterskiing and other extreme sports activities
  • Hit by a boat while swimming, or dragged underwater

In any such cases, if the cause of the accident was caused by a defect in the ship or negligence, or fault or neglect by the boat operator, rather than the actions of the injured party, there is a possibility of claiming compensation.

What should I do after a boating accident?

Boating accidents can result in serious injuries and, if the boat is damaged, can also pose a significant risk to other passengers who were not involved when the initial accident occurred. Refer to any safety information that you have been provided and take whatever emergency action is necessary in these cases.

If you have any injuries, make sure to get them checked and treated by a medical professional. A medical report will be written up that will document your injuries and treatment recommendations, which can be used as evidence in your claim. Even if you feel that you have not been seriously injured, it is important to see a doctor. Some injuries are not apparent in the immediate aftermath of an accident, but may worsen over time and become quite serious later. A medical examination can identify any such underlying conditions, record their existence and ensure you receive treatment.

Any accidents on a boat should also be reported straight away, with incidents in UK waters filed with the Marine Accident Investigation Branch (MAIB).

From there, it is important to gather information and collect evidence about the circumstances of the accident, which may help you to recover compensation later. If there were any witnesses to the accident, get their contact details and ask if they would be willing to make a statement to back up your claim. Take any photos of the scene where the accident took place and, if possible, what caused it. If the boat has CCTV on board that recorded the accident, make sure to get a copy, as this can be useful evidence.

Speak to a boating accident solicitor at the earliest opportunity following your accident to discuss the possibility of compensation, as an experienced solicitor will be able to help you gather evidence and build your case. As time passes, record any development in your injuries by taking photos to provide visual proof of the pain and suffering caused by the boating accident. Keep records of any expenses incurred as a result of your injuries, such as travel and prescription costs or other expenses related to medical care.

FAQs About Boat Accident Compensation Claims

Who is held responsible for a boating accident?

The party responsible for your boating accident will likely be those who own or are in charge of the boat. Boat owners are legally obliged to carry public liability insurance to protect against accidents, while ferry, fishing and cruise liner companies are subject to the same health and safety standards set by the Health and Safety Executive to protect employees and customers.

Leisure companies, cruise carriers and tour operators are also obliged to ensure the safety of participants of any excursions involving boats. As such, if an accident occurs on a boat that was not your fault, and you are injured as a result, you may be entitled to claim personal injury compensation. This eligibility will depend on who is held liable for the incident, so it is crucial to speak to expert boat accident lawyers to begin this process. We will first discuss your circumstances to determine who is the negligent party, whether that be the boat operator or someone else, before launching any boating accident claims.

Can I claim for a boating accident at work?

Sailing or working onboard a boat can be one of the riskiest roles for employees. If you are hurt while working on a boat, making a claim can help to compensate you for the pain and suffering, and support you financially with regard to any loss of earnings resulting from the accident.

As in any workplace, it is the responsibility of your employer to make sure you are kept as safe as possible while aboard a boat. This applies to any of the following roles and industries:

  • Cargo ships
  • Cruise ships
  • Fishing vessels
  • Coast guard
  • Vessel repair or maintenance
  • Boat tours

To meet their HSE obligations, boat operators must provide crew members with the correct safety equipment and offer them the necessary training. Failure to do so may be considered negligent and put you in a position to seek compensation for the pain and suffering of your injury, along with lost wages, medical bills and other associated costs.

Are there any time limits when making a boat accident compensation claim?

The time limit for making any personal injury claim is usually three years from the date on which the accident occurred. However, accidents on boats, ships or cruise liners can be covered by separate regulations, where a claim may need to be made within two years of the date of the accident. If you are concerned about time limits that may apply to your circumstances, speak to our boating accident lawyers at the earliest opportunity for a no-obligation consultation. We can advise you on your eligibility to recover compensation and start the process within any deadlines that apply.

How much boat injury compensation am I entitled to?

It is difficult to calculate exactly how much compensation you will be entitled to following a boating accident, due to differences in injuries and the circumstances of the incident. Our Personal Injury Compensation Calculator provides guidance on the average compensation payout amounts based on previous cases, so you can get an understanding of how much your claim is worth.

In addition to your pain and suffering, you can often collect damages for specific financial losses you experienced due to the accident. For example, if you are the owner of the boat and were not at fault for the accident, you may be able to claim for property damage to your vessel. Compensation can also cover lost wages if you need to take time off work to recover from your injuries.

How long does it take to resolve a boating accident case?

There are many factors that affect compensation claims for boating accidents, and this makes it difficult to estimate how long the process of making your claim will take. For relatively simple situations, in which the negligent party admits their liability and seeks to settle the claim, the case can be resolved in a matter of months. For more complicated cases that involve multiple other boats, complicated contributing factors or disputed liability, it can take more than a year to resolve your claim.

What types of boat accidents do you cover?

As we have noted above, we can support clients with insurance claims relating to a wide variety of boating accidents. When appropriate health and safety procedures are not followed, or when other types of negligence occur aboard a vessel, there are several types of accidents that commonly result.

  • Collisions: Collisions can occur between two ships, or a ship and a stationary object. Common causes include navigational errors, failure to follow maritime traffic rules, and poor visibility.
  • Grounding: This occurs when a vessel runs aground, hitting the seabed. It can result in significant damage to the vessel and injury to crew members or other boaters.
  • Falling overboard: People falling overboard can suffer severe injuries or fatalities. This is a significant concern in rough weather conditions, and if life jackets are not provided or if other safety protocols are not followed, this can be considered negligence.
  • Onboard injuries: Slips and falls, injuries from heavy machinery or equipment, and burns or scalds from onboard kitchens are typical examples of accidents that can occur on board a ship.
  • Fires: Fires and explosions can cause severe injury and can be due to mechanical issues, electrical faults, improper handling of combustible materials or other types of negligence. Fire extinguishers must be provided to mitigate the risk of injury.

Speak to our solicitors about your circumstances today to learn how we can help, and whether you are eligible to make a compensation claim.

Talk to Us

To start your boat accident compensation claim, contact us today by calling us for free on 0345 872 6666, or fill in our online enquiry form and we will get back to you.

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