Boating along the Ohio River is a popular recreational activity for many Louisville residents. Operators of motorboats or other watercraft must comply with state and local regulations in regards to safety. If someone operates their boat carelessly, and injures someone onboard, or causes an accident with another boat on the waterways, they may be held legally responsible for their actions.
If you are injured in a boating accident, a Louisville boat accident lawyer can provide you with information about your legal rights. An experienced personal injury attorney in your community can investigate the accident and determine whether the operator or another party acted negligently. Let a local attorney help protect your rights and get you the compensation you deserve.
There are a variety of negligent and careless actions that can result in a severe or even deadly boat accident. For example, a boat operator who is tailgating or cuts directly in front of another boat can cause a horrific crash. Serious boating accidents can also happen when the operator is speeding and someone is thrown overboard or the boat collides with another object in the water. Operating a boat while drunk or under the influence of drugs is another example of negligence.
After a boating accident, you have the burden of proving that the operator of the boat was negligent or failed to live up to some obligation to you. You must prove this negligence or breach of duty by the boat operator was the direct cause of the accident and you need to show how badly you were hurt. Boat operators have a legal duty of care to take reasonable steps to ensure their passengers are safe. If a boat operator violates this duty, such as by driving the boat carelessly or recklessly, and a passenger is injured, the operator may be liable for the passenger’s damages.
According to Kentucky Revised Statutes § 413.140, a personal injury case must be filed within 12 months of the boating accident. While there are a few exceptions, if your attorney does not file your lawsuit by the first anniversary of the boat accident, you will lose your right to pursue compensatory damages. One exception to the statute of limitations is when a minor is harmed in a boating accident. In those cases, the minor will have until their 19th birthday to file a lawsuit against the responsible party.
A skilled attorney in Louisville can interview witnesses, hire experts, obtain all accident reports, and help you build a strong case. Your attorney will also help you deal with the insurance companies, negotiate a settlement and, if necessary, make a compelling case to a jury.
Boat accident settlements include compensation for both general and special damages. Special damages refer to the specific monetary losses you suffer as a result of the accident, which could include hospital bills, surgery costs, physical therapy, and lost wages, whereas general damages are the non-specific losses resulting from the accident. This could include pain and suffering, emotional anguish, mental distress, loss of consortium, and loss of future income.
If you are injured in a boating accident caused by the negligence of another party, contact a Louisville boat accident lawyer to see what legal options you may have. A local attorney can help you pursue the financial compensation owed for your losses and work hard to bring all responsible parties to justice. Speak to an attorney to learn about your legal options. Let us help you seek justice today.
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