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Maritime accident claims and lawsuits in Miami, FL

As a boutique law firm, we take immense pride in providing our clients unparalleled individualized attention. We understand that maritime accident cases can be complex and that the injuries suffered can be severe. Our attorneys have a long-standing track record of success in handling these cases and are determined to fiercely advocate for your rights. Contact us now for an obligation-free consultation and witness legal representation that is backed by our expertise, effective communication, and resolute dedication to securing the best outcome for your claim.

Maritime law and accident cases

Maritime law primarily applies to injuries that occur on navigable waters. If an injury happens on the open sea, in navigable rivers, or within the territorial waters of the United States, it typically falls under maritime law jurisdiction. Conversely, if the injury occurs on land, like a dock or pier, it is generally subject to Florida state law. The legal status of the injured party plays a crucial role in determining which legal framework applies:

  • Seaman: Maritime laws like the Jones Act and General Maritime Law cover "seamen" hurt while working on a vessel in navigable waters. Seamen can sue their employer for negligence.
  • Longshore and Harbor Workers: Individuals who work on docks, piers, or in shipyards but do not qualify as seamen may be covered by the Longshore and Harbor Workers' Compensation Act (LHWCA). This federal law provides workers' compensation benefits for maritime workers injured on land or in navigable waters.
  • Passengers: Passengers on cruise ships or other vessels may have their rights governed by both maritime law and contractual agreements. Cruise ship tickets often include clauses specifying where lawsuits must be filed and what law governs. In some cases, these agreements may limit passengers' ability to file claims in Florida state courts.
  • Recreational Boaters: Recreational boating accidents on Florida's waterways are typically subject to state personal injury laws. However, if the accident occurs on federal waters, such as the Gulf of Mexico, it may fall under maritime law.

The type of vessel involved in the incident can also impact the application of maritime law versus Florida law:

  • Commercial Vessels: Injuries on commercial vessels, such as cargo ships, fishing boats, and passenger ships, often fall under federal maritime law, if the injured party qualifies as a seaman.
  • Recreational Vessels: Injuries on private recreational boats are generally governed by Florida state law as long as they occur within state waters. However, if the accident occurs in federal waters, maritime law may apply.

Types of maritime accidents

Maritime accidents are not uncommon in Miami due to its extensive coastline and vibrant water-related activities. These accidents can result from a variety of factors, including:

  • Collisions: Between vessels or with stationary objects.
  • Capsizing: Overturning of boats or ships.
  • Fires and Explosions: Often related to the handling of fuel or cargo.
  • Sinking: Partial or complete submersion of a vessel.
  • Slip and Falls: On decks, docks, or other surfaces.
  • Equipment Failures: Malfunctioning navigation systems, engines, or safety equipment.
  • Human Error: Negligence in operation, maintenance, or crew training.
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Maritime accident injuries

The maritime environment presents unique risks, and injuries sustained in these accidents can be particularly severe. Common maritime accident injuries include:

  • Drowning: Submersion in water leading to death or injury.
  • Burns: From fires, explosions, or contact with hot surfaces.
  • Fractures and Amputations: Often due to heavy equipment or machinery.
  • Head Injuries: Resulting from falls or collisions.
  • Back and Spinal Cord Injuries: Often caused by slips and falls.
  • Exposure-Related Conditions: Hypothermia or hyperthermia.
  • Illnesses: Contracted due to exposure or contaminated water.

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What compensation can be pursued?

When you're injured in a maritime accident, you may be entitled to various forms of compensation to address your physical, financial, and emotional needs:

  • Maintenance and Cure: Covers daily living expenses and medical treatment until maximum recovery is reached.
  • Lost Wages: Compensation for income lost due to the accident.
  • Medical Expenses: Coverage for current and future medical bills.
  • Pain and Suffering: Damages for the physical and emotional distress caused by the accident.
  • Rehabilitation Costs: Coverage for therapy and rehabilitation to improve your quality of life.
  • Wrongful Death Benefits: In cases of fatal maritime accidents, certain family members may be entitled to compensation.
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Our firm is here to help.

Maritime accidents can be devastating and complex and often require the expertise of a skilled maritime law attorney. At Correa & Martinez Trial Lawyers, we will thoroughly investigate the incident, working closely with maritime experts to gather all the necessary evidence. We'll negotiate skillfully with the responsible parties to ensure you receive fair compensation, and we'll be there every step of the way, advocating for your rights and keeping you informed throughout the entire legal process. With our help, you can focus on healing and recovery while we work tirelessly to achieve the best possible outcome for your case. If you or a loved one has been involved in a maritime accident in Miami, don't hesitate to reach out to Correa & Martinez Trial Lawyers. We offer a free consultation to discuss your case and help you understand your rights and options. Contact us today to speak with us about fighting for the compensation you deserve.

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