Drowning and near-drowning are among the most devastating tragedies that any family could experience. Drowning is unexpected, sudden, shocking, and often preventable. Swimming pool owners have obligations to keep visitors at their pool safe from hazards. Unfortunately, some fail in this duty. If you have suffered injuries or a family member has died in a swimming pool accident, someone may have been negligent. If so, you have the right to pursue money damages from the negligent parties.
Consulting with an attorney from Kogan & DiSalvo soon after a swimming pool accident or drowning death could help preserve your rights and put you in a strong position to secure appropriate compensation from the responsible parties. A Martin County swimming pool accident lawyer could help you put your life back together again and take legal action.
When an injured person sues for losses, they usually are seeking money damages. Damages refer to funds paid by responsible parties to compensate claimants for the losses they suffered as a result of their injuries.
One component of a compensatory award is economic damages, which represent reimbursement for all documentable expenses associated with the accident. Near-drownings may lead to permanent brain damage. Non-fatal swimming pool accidents can result in paralysis and other severe, permanent injuries. Because these injuries are so severe, a claimant may incur significant expenses over a long term. A lawyer experienced in this area could help a family after a swimming pool accident by accounting for all their injury-related expenses and estimating future costs. Some examples of economic losses may include:
In addition to economic damages, an individual may recover for their emotional losses as well. Pain and suffering, loss of companionship, and diminished enjoyment of life are all examples of non-economic damages. They represent real losses but are not attached to an exact amount.
When a person suffers a severe injury from a swimming accident–such as permanent brain damage, loss of the use of limbs, diminished sensory or cognitive functioning–the toll on the injured party’s life and that of their family members is incalculable. An attorney in Martin County could present evidence that suggests emotional and mental trauma relating to their swimming accident and request non-economic damages as compensation for these losses. In contrast to many other states, there is no cap on non-economic damages for negligence cases in Florida.
When a pool is open to the public or is part of a business, the owner or operator has a duty to provide the visitors with a safe experience. Swimmers at these facilities have a right to expect well-trained and competent lifeguards, pool equipment in good working condition, a well-maintained pool area free of hazards, and adequate signage to warn of any dangers. If a pool owner or operator fails in its duty to provide a reasonably safe experience free of foreseeable hazards, they could be held liable for negligence.
In contrast, a homeowner who invites social guests to use a pool at their residence has only limited duties to their guests. The owner of a residential pool must warn guests of any hazards they are aware of that a visitor might not anticipate and discover on their own.
However, because of the large numbers of drownings, near-drownings, and other accidents at residential pools, the Florida legislature enacted the Residential Swimming Pool Safety Act. This law requires all residential pools installed after 2000 to be equipped with at least one of several enumerated safety features to prevent surreptitious entry to the pool area. A homeowner who violates this law can be charged with a second-degree misdemeanor, and failure to comply with the law allows an injury attorney to establish negligence if someone was injured because of their violation.
In the aftermath of a swimming incident, most families do not think about contacting an attorney right away. Delay is usually a mistake, however, as the sooner a skilled personal injury lawyer can begin investigating an accident, the stronger the claimant’s case is likely to be. Get a strong partner to advocate for you and your family. Contact a Martin County swimming pool accident lawyer from Kogan & DiSalvo to schedule your free case evaluation.