Embarking on a luxurious cruise should be an opportunity for rest and relaxation with your loved ones. If you suffer a major injury aboard the ship, however, the fate of your vacation might be the least of your worries.
Any personal injury can be financially costly with the possibility of prolonged medical treatment. Maritime injury law is unique in how it establishes liablity, so it can be difficult to determine who is at fault for your injury when filing a claim.
Who is liable for a passenger injury?
The cruise ship operator is liable for an injury you sustain aboard the ship only if you can prove negligence or willful intent on the part of the crew or the cruise line itself. Without an expert witness or evidence of an unsafe condition of which the cruise line should be aware, it can be difficult to establish liability.
Who is liable for a crew member’s injury?
If you are a seaman or crew member who receives a personal injury while working aboard a cruise ship, there is an action you can take against the cruise line in its capacity as an employer. The Jones Act empowers an injured seaman to recover damages from the employer in the presence of sufficient evidence proving negligence.
Common accidents such as slip-and-falls or falling objects tend to be the fault of a property owner under premises liability law. In maritime law, it can be noticeably difficult to pin liability on a cruise line operator without sufficient legal aid.