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Best Jet Ski Accident Law Firm in Miami

Have you or someone you love sustained injuries in a jet ski accident? Jet ski accidents happen all the time, and people die every year when something goes wrong on the water. Accidents can changes lives forever.

We get it, jet skis are a lot of fun. They’re super popular in Miami waterways. These high-speed machines are a great way to get around and enjoy the scenery in one of the best cities in the world.

Sometimes, however, jet ski fun is overshadowed by an accident that leaves someone seriously injured or dead. With so many vessels on the water and other operators going at high speeds, a single mistake or misread can be fatal.

Dealing with the impact of a jet ski accident is usually stressful and filled with legal questions. You need a jet ski accident law expert to make sure you get the compensation you deserve.

Let’s take a look at the steps you should take if you are involved in a jet ski accident.

What Causes Jet Ski Accidents

Think for a moment about how many road accidents happen every year. People die every day in car accidents.

They’re sitting in cars that have millions of dollars worth of safety tests and impact studies. There are roads with lights and lane lines and all sorts of rules.

Very little of that exists on the water. On a jet ski, there are no safety belts. Riders often cross waterways quickly and unpredictably. They do not have brakes. When you get hit, there are no airbags.

Here are some of the common reasons we see jet ski accidents happen:

  • Lack of training or experience driving jet skis
  • Poor maintenance
  • Disregard for safety rules and jet ski laws
  • Driving or boating under the influence of drugs or alcohol
  • Poor labels on waterways
  • Large wakes caused by other vessels
  • Collisions with other boats or watercraft
  • Failure to properly mark rocks and other hazards
  • Mechanical failure

People who rent jet skis expect them to work. They also presume that areas will be well-marked.  The law also requires that they are trained in how to operate a jet ski.

You’ll also learn fairly quickly that not everyone on the water is as responsible as you are. People go out for a weekend and have drinks on a boat thinking it’s no big deal. However, their relaxed stance can have terrible consequences.

Assigning Fault in Jet Ski Accident Law

It’s not going to be the first thing on your mind after a jet ski accident, but it’s still crucial to what happens afterward.

Obviously, priority goes to anyone injured in a jet ski accident.

However, determining fault is a massive part of jet ski accident law. You or a loved one involved in a jet ski accident could be dealing with its impacts for years. There are medical visits, the trauma from the accident, and other lasting effects. That’s why determining who is at fault is so vital.

Your lawyer’s not going to be on the scene with you, so here are some things you can do to help establish fault after the fact.

Step 1 – Call 911

Even if you feel like your injuries are minor, if someone hits you while you’re on a jet ski, you should call for help from first responders.

Step 2 – Document the Scene

Take pictures, if possible, of any damage, injuries, and the scene where the accident happened. It will help with evidence in your personal injury case.

Step 3 – Don’t Talk to Insurance Companies

The person who hit you, your family member, or your friend might try to play the good guy. They’ll apologize, offer to help in any way they can, and take your contact information down and promise to have their insurance company contact you.

However, you must remember that insurance companies are trying to limit their liabilities. It’s not in their nature to hand out large settlements to “do the right thing.”

Don’t talk to anyone from an insurance company until you’ve spoken to a lawyer with experience in jet ski accident law.

Step 4 – Get Contact Information

Get information from anyone involved in the accident and anyone else who witnessed what happened. They could provide crucial information down the road that plays an integral part in your case.

Damages You Should Seek After a Jet Ski Accident

Jet skis are powerful vehicles that, and accidents can lead to severe injuries or even death.

Traveling at high speeds or colliding with a larger boat without much in the way of protective gear lands plenty of people in the hospital every year. Some of the common issues we help people seek damages for include:

Lost Wages

If you break bones, require surgery, or any kind of physical therapy, the odds are that you’re going to miss time from work.

You shouldn’t have to use vacation or sick days to cover time off from work because of someone’s carelessness or neglect. Lost wages are a common issue in settlements and personal injury cases. Responsible parties are required to cover any income you lost as a result of the accident.

Future Lost Income

What happens if the jet ski accident leaves you permanently disabled? If you’re a mechanic who can’t fix cars anymore or a developer who can’t type on a keyboard any longer, it’s going to significantly affect your long-term earnings.

You need to calculate future lost wages in any personal injury case.

Medical Costs

The medical bills can quickly pile up if you’re in an accident, and you’ll have to pay for medical transport from the scene, any necessary surgery, medical evaluations, prescription medications, and other costs. Liable parties need to cover these expenses.

Pain & Suffering

A jet ski accident can inflict devastating trauma on victims that will last a lifetime. While quantifying pain and suffering is difficult, victims deserve compensation for the mental burden they now have to bear as a result of someone else’s negligence.

These are just some of the damages you can seek. With an attorney experienced with jet ski accident law in Miami, you can avoid the financial challenges often associated with recovering from severe injuries.

Getting the Right Help from a Jet Ski Accident Law Expert

When it comes to jet ski accident law, experience counts. The right lawyer will have the resources necessary to get the compensation you need for medical issues, missed work, pain & suffering, and other costs associated with the accident.

Here’s what the right lawyer can do for you:

  • Establish the Facts: A good lawyer will establish the facts and point out factors that led to your accident. Also, they’ll know to spot the hazard that wasn’t marked or determine whether the boat driver who hit you was under the influence.
    Investigating what happened is the first step a lawyer will take after an accident. Any claim you make with an insurance company or negotiating a settlement needs evidence.
  • Building Your Accident Case: Your lawyer will start building a case once they gather all available evidence. They’ll put together a timeline that tells the story of what happened to you. Things like medical bills, doctor visits, police reports, pictures, and other items are a big part of that. They’ll also use the evidence to start establishing who was responsible for the accident.
    Sometimes an accident happened because more than one party made a mistake.
    For example, if you’re on a jet ski and the jet ski that you’re using malfunctions and you drive into what you think is a safe area to evaluate what’s happening, what happens if you hit a rock or some other unmarked structure?
    In a case like this, an experienced lawyer will prove invaluable because they can determine whether the manufacturer AND the people in charge of marking water hazards are liable for any injuries.
  • Prosecuting an Insurance Claim: Once things are ready, your lawyer will help you file your claim with the other party’s (parties’) insurance company. They’ll know how to present the claim in a way that’s convincing and eliminates the red tape insurance providers often try to put in your way.
  • Negotiating Settlement: Once your lawyer identifies liable parties they will start the negotiating process. Usually, accidents involve settlement negotiations between lawyers, companies, insurance providers, and other stakeholders.
    Insurance companies offer settlements to keep dealings out of the public and still get you the payment you need.
  • Taking the Case to Court: If settlement negotiations fail, your lawyer will take the case to court. Hire a lawyer with substantial courtroom experience who can see things through to the very end.

Before hiring any lawyer, find out their experience in handling jet ski and boating cases.  The law that governs maritime and admiralty cases (boating and water sports) is very different than the law on land.  It is important that your lawyer is skilled and experienced, and someone who has successfully handled and tried serious personal injury maritime cases.

 

 

Article by:

John Leighton

A nationally-recognized trial lawyer who handles catastrophic injury and death cases. He manages Leighton Law, P.A. trial lawyers, with offices in Miami and Orlando, Florida. He is President of The National Crime Victim Bar Association, author of the 2-volume textbook,Litigating Premises Security Cases, and past Chairman of the Association of Trial Lawyers of America’s Motor Vehicle, Highway & Premises Liability Section. Having won some of the largest verdicts in Florida history, Mr. Leighton is listed inThe Best Lawyers in America (14 years), “Top Lawyers” in the South Florida Legal Guide (15 years), Top 100 Florida SuperLawyer™ and Florida SuperLawyers (14 years), “Orlando Legal Elite” by Orlando Style magazine, and FloridaTrend magazine “Florida Legal Elite

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