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Can I Sue for Falling Overboard?

April 03, 2024
Boat Accident

Understanding Your Rights If You Fell Overboard on a Boat

One minute you are enjoying the soft motion of the waves while peering out into the deep, blue sea, the next you are struggling to stay afloat. Falls overboard happen frequently, but you can only sue if another person caused your injuries. Proving liability can be challenging, so it is important to know your rights and take the steps necessary to strengthen your case.

If you fell overboard while on a tour boat, commercial fishing trip, or another excursion, you might be entitled to compensation if another person caused you to fall. However, it can be difficult to prove who was at fault for the accident without the help of an attorney. 

Who Can I Sue If I Fall Overboard?

Any time that another person causes you harm, you might be able to file a personal injury lawsuit. For instance, if a duck boat driver was speeding through the water and hit a buoy, ejecting you from the boat, you would be able to sue the duck boat owner or operator for damages. 

It is not always easy to know who to file a lawsuit against, since there may be several parties involved in the incident. Just remember, it is not your job to determine liability. An attorney can complete a thorough analysis of the case to help assess who was at fault and how you can hold them accountable. 

What Kinds of Injuries Result from Falling Overboard?

Falls overboard can be catastrophic. In some cases, they may even result in death. There are times when you may be unsure if you are severely injured. It is still highly recommended that you seek medical treatment and receive a proper diagnosis.

Injuries that may result from falling overboard: 

  • Concussion
  • Lacerations to the hands, face, and body
  • Traumatic brain injury (TBI)
  • Lung damage
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Broken bones
  • Drowning
  • Death

Injuries can range in severity, but that should not prohibit you from being treated by a trained physician. A delay in treatment could add weeks or months to your recovery.

What If I Was Partially At Fault for My Injuries?

Many people assume that if they were partially at fault for an accident, then they cannot seek damages. However, Florida law does not bar recovery if a plaintiff is found to be partly to blame. Instead, their recovery will be reduced in proportion to their percentage of the fault. 

Common Causes of Falls Overboard

Falls overboard can be caused by a number of factors. If you are injured while on a tour boat or other commercial vessel, it is important to file an incident report with the company. 

Common causes of falls overboard include:

  • Reckless driving
  • Unsafe speed
  • Failure to follow regulations
  • Collisions
  • Large wakes
  • Intoxication

There may be more than one party that can be held legally responsible for your fall-related injuries. Filing a claim against the right parties is essential for the success of your case. 

Contact Our Office to Learn More

If you were injured due to a fall overboard, contact our office at +18446273529 to schedule a free, no-obligation case evaluation.

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