Cruise ships are a great way to take a vacation. It is a very controlled and well-manicured floating city where everything is well planned and usually well executed. But even in a situation like this, almost paradise, accidents can still happen. It is after all, still out on the water, and that is not as stable of an environment as the earth itself.
If you were injured on a cruise ship, or lost a loved one, you should get a maritime lawyer to help you with the case. There is a whole set of laws regarding things that happen at sea, which is called maritime law. If your ship goes to another country, there can be international laws involved, which opens the door to questions of jurisdiction.
Yet another aspect is the Jones Act, which is part of maritime law, and this usually applies to cruise ship employees who are injured on the job.
The need for a maritime lawyer, if you have been injured, is made even more important when you realize some of the tricks cruise lines do in order to protect themselves. Oftenthey have waivers people sign when they sign up for a cruise, which is aimed at relieving the ship of liability if there were an accident.
Laws related to cruise ships are influenced by maritime law, so what applies in normal circumstances may not apply on a cruise ship. The statute of limitations for instance, may be much shorter when you take a cruise.
There may also be restrictions on where you can file a claim. Where you live most likely will not be an option because of the complicated language of the ticket you purchased. It may be the home of the cruise line, or it could be a designated port such as Miami. It could even be another country.
Cruise ships may also put various rules in contract form, on your ticket. Many people never read the fine print on a cruise ship ticket, but it is probably there. It may require you to submit a “notification of intent to sue,” within a certain amount of time. You will likely need a lawyer to even communicate with a cruise ship about your loss.
If you have been injured, or if you have suffered the loss of a loved one, on board a cruise ship, getting compensation for your loss may be very difficult. With a qualified maritime lawyer, you can have an expert sort through all the rules for you. Having someone fight for your rights is essential if you hope to be compensated for your loss on board a cruise ship. If you do have to go to court, you will need the best representation possible because cruise ships have had all this happen before, and they have a team of lawyers as well.