Fort Lauderdale Boat Accident Lawyer

Residents of Florida enjoy over 200 days of sun every year, and in addition to the ocean and Intracoastal Waterway, the state is full of lakes, rivers and other waterways that are perfect for boating.

Together, these factors are the reason that Florida has more boating accidents each year than any other state. If you or someone you love has been in an accident, it is important that you speak with a Fort Lauderdale boat accident lawyer right away. A knowledgeable injury attorney in Fort Lauderdale can build a claim to help produce a successful result on your behalf.

Boating Laws

Boating laws in Florida are similar to the laws of driving any other vehicle, but they do have some major differences. Just like the operators of cars and trucks must take care and drive responsibly at all times, so too must boat operators. When they fail to do so, the at-fault boat operator may be found negligent and could be held liable for any injuries that result from that negligence.

Unlike cars and other motor vehicles, boats do not need to be insured in order to be registered in Florida. However, it is most recommended that any boat operator obtains the proper insurance in case of an accident. Most of these policies are written as “all-risk” policies, meaning that they cover many situations with the exception of certain exclusions written into the policy. Few boat insurance policies in Florida are written under “named peril”, which means that only those risks named will be covered by insurance.

Also unlike other motor vehicles, any person over the age of 14 can operate a boat on Florida’s waterways, and those aged 6 and younger must wear a lifejacket. Those operating a boat must also be very careful on the waterways they travel. This is because while certain waterways fall under Florida State’s jurisdiction, others are ruled under federal law. Federal boating laws can be very complex, but a boat accident lawyer in Ft. Lauderdale can help explain both state and federal regulations.

Accident Causes

There are several causes of boat accidents in Ft. Lauderdale. They include:

  • A collision with another boat or submerged object
  • Excessive speed
  • Falling overboard
  • Sinking or capsizing
  • Fires and explosions
  • Boat malfunctions and/or defective parts on a boat
  • Distracted operating of a boat, such as when texting
  • Impairment from alcohol or drugs

An experienced Fort Lauderdale boat accident lawyer can help an individual prepare a claim no matter the cause of the accident.

Common Injuries

Just like in motor vehicle accidents, injuries from boating accidents can range from minor cuts and bruises to injuries that are much more severe injuries like spinal cord injuries. The most common serious injuries that result from boating accidents are:

  • Broken bones
  • Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs)
  • Spinal cord injuries
  • Death

Those who have sustained these injuries from a boating accident, and the accident was the fault of another person, should contact a boat accident lawyer in Ft. Lauderdale.

Potential Compensation

After a boating accident due to someone else’s negligence, injured parties may be able to seek compensation for their injuries. Compensation may be granted for:

  • Medical bills
  • Present and future lost income
  • Pain and suffering

There are a few requirements that must be met before a claim for compensation in a boating accident can be made. These include:

  • A person’s wrongful death, or the disappearance of someone that suggests possible death or injury
  • Any extensive injury requiring medical treatment
  • $2,000 or more in property damages

Contacting an Attorney

If you or someone you know has been in a boating accident and have the right to compensation, it is important to contact a Fort Lauderdale boat accident lawyer right away. Florida laws can be complicated when it comes to boating accidents, and an experienced local attorney can help.