Frequently Asked Questions

Welcome to our FAQ page, here you will find answers to some commonly asked questions regarding your Injury Claim. For immediate assistance, please feel free to call our office: 888-B-O-A-T-L-A-W.

HOW MUCH DOES IT COST TO HIRE A MARITIME ATTORNEY?
HOW DO I KNOW IF MARITIME LAW APPLIES TO MY CASE?
HOW MUCH IS MY CASE WORTH?
WHY DOES IT MATTER IF I CHOOSE A MARITIME ATTORNEY OR JUST A PERSONAL INJURY ATTORNEY?
HOW IS MARITIME LAW DIFFERENT THAN STATE LAW?
WHAT IF I AM FROM OUT OF STATE AND I GET HURT ON A BOAT IN FLORIDA?
WHAT IF I AM FROM OUT OF STATE AND I GET HURT ON A CRUISE SHIP THAT LEFT FROM FLORIDA?
CAN MY ATTORNEY FROM ANOTHER STATE HANDLE MY BOAT INJURY OR CRUISE SHIP CASE OUTSIDE FLORIDA?
IS THERE A NOTICE REQUIREMENT IF I HAVE A CRUISE SHIP INJURY?
IF I HAD TO FILE SUIT AGAINST A CRUISE LINE DOES THAT MEAN I HAVE TO COME TO FLORIDA?
DO I HAVE TO FILE SUIT AGAINST A CRUISE LINE TO RECOVER FROM THEM?

HOW MUCH DOES IT COST TO HIRE A MARITIME ATTORNEY?

  • We only handle cases on contingency. It costs you nothing unless we recover for you. This includes you can call us and talk about your case at no charge.

HOW DO I KNOW IF MARITIME LAW APPLIES TO MY CASE?

  • If the incident occurred on salt water or on a body of water which passes between two states, then maritime law probably applies. You need to talk with us to know for sure. This makes a big difference in your case.

HOW MUCH IS MY CASE WORTH?

  • The worth of a case depends upon two major factors: “liability” and “damages”. Liability is the issue of why did the incident occur. Damages are the medical bills, lost wages, injury and pain and suffering you have experienced—and might continue to experience. Each case is different. It is easy to understand that a person with $100,000 in medical bills might have a larger case than a person with no medical bills at all. But also, a person could have smaller medical bills but a major injury. Talk to us for free about your case and we can discuss with you the valuation of your case.

WHY DOES IT MATTER IF I CHOOSE A MARITIME ATTORNEY OR JUST A PERSONAL INJURY ATTORNEY?

  • Because a “dog-bite” attorney or “car accident” attorney probably does not know where your case has to be filed and probably doesn’t know what law applies to your claim. You don’t want this to be the first cruise ship or boat accident case your attorney has handled. How will I know? Ask the attorney What law applies? What is the statute of limitations for my case? Where would suit have to be filed on my case? If they cannot tell you this immediately, run. We know the answers to your case.

HOW IS MARITIME LAW DIFFERENT THAN STATE LAW?

  • First, the statutes of limitation are usually shorter under maritime law. Maritime law is based mostly upon federal statutes and case history from the federal courts. Some maritime cases can only be filed in federal court, but cases governed by state laws can be filed in state court—and sometimes in federal court as well. In some instances a jury is the ultimate decision-maker in the case, in maritime law, it is a judge who makes a decision in certain cases. Your attorney has to know which one. We know which one.

WHAT IF I AM FROM OUT OF STATE AND I GET HURT ON A BOAT IN FLORIDA?

  • It depends upon the circumstances but you will likely have to bring that claim in the State of Florida—even if you live in New York, or Ohio, Pennsylvania, Texas, etc.  But that’s OK. We handle these and have been handling these for 25 years.

WHAT IF I AM FROM OUT OF STATE AND I GET HURT ON A CRUISE SHIP THAT LEFT FROM FLORIDA?

  • This depends upon which cruise line it is—and what it says in the ticket book. A ticket is a contract between you and the cruise line. The small print in the ticket book tells you where you have to bring any case against the cruise line, and it tells you how long you have to bring that claim. For many of the major cruise lines, you must bring the claim against the cruise line in Florida. These cruise lines include Carnival Cruise Lines, Royal Caribbean, Norwegian, Celebrity, Disney, Celebration, etc. You don’t have a choice. If the “dog bite” attorney wants to file suit for you in some other State than Florida, you need to call us right away.

CAN MY ATTORNEY FROM ANOTHER STATE HANDLE MY BOAT INJURY OR CRUISE SHIP CASE OUTSIDE FLORIDA?

  • Cruise lines know which attorneys are licensed to practice in the State of Florida. They know that an out-of-Florida attorney cannot file suit in Florida unless the attorney is licensed in Florida. Insurance companies know the same thing: an out of State attorney cannot file suit for you in Florida unless they are licensed here.  We have successfully represented clients in Florida against the cruise lines and negligent boat operators for more than 25 years.

IS THERE A NOTICE REQUIREMENT IF I HAVE A CRUISE SHIP INJURY?

  • Yes, the same ticket book agreement which tells you where to file suit also says you are required to give written notice of your incident to the cruise line within 6 months (some say 185 days). This is also found in the small print of the ticket book. We have the required elements which are supposed to be given to the cruise line in order to preserve your case.

IF I HAD TO FILE SUIT AGAINST A CRUISE LINE DOES THAT MEAN I HAVE TO COME TO FLORIDA?

  • Not necessarily. Many cases resolve after we file suit for the client. For some, the client does have to briefly come to Florida—on a mutually agreeable time schedule. This depends upon how the case goes and whether the case can be resolved. 

DO I HAVE TO FILE SUIT AGAINST A CRUISE LINE TO RECOVER FROM THEM?

  • No, you do not have to file suit. Our first goal is to resolve the case fairly for our clients without having to file suit. Many times the cruise line will resolve a case that is fair to the client and agreeable with the client. Other times the client may not believe the offer from the cruise line is fair—and the client tells us to file suit against the cruise line. We do not file suit for a client unless they tell us to do so. We explain what is involved in filing suit, what offers have been made on the case, and advise on the strengths and weaknesses of the case, etc. so that a very informed decision can be made on the claim by the client.

Call us right now to talk to our maritime attorneys about your case. We have the answers to your questions.

Contact us at 888-B-O-A-T-L-A-W.

The foregoing is not meant to be legal advice but is general information. Each case has its own facts.

Contact us at 888-B-O-A-T-L-A-W for free to know the specific answers to your case.

***None of the foregoing is legal advice and is not meant to give legal advice. Each case is different. This is why it is important to contact us on the specific facts of your case. What you say in making the claim can greatly affect your outcome.