While going on a cruise is an exciting and fun experience, unfortunate circumstances or the negligence of a crew member or other person may cause you to suffer severe injuries. After an accident, you may feel as though you have no legal recourse.

However, by speaking to a Michigan cruise ship accident lawyer, you could understand your legal rights and decide whether to file a claim. If so, an experienced attorney at Buckfire & Buckfire, P.C. could help to guide you through the legal process to seek compensation.

Our firm handles cases against a number of cruise lines. These include:

  • American Cruise Lines
  • Azamara Cruises
  • Carnival Cruise Lines
  • Celebrity Cruises
  • Costa Cruises
  • Crystal Cruises
  • Cunard Line
  • Disney Cruise Line
  • Holland America Line
  • Hurtigruten
  • Majestic America Line
  • MSC Cruises
  • Norwegian Cruise Line
  • Oceania Cruises
  • Orient Lines
  • Pearl Seas Cruises
  • Princess Cruises
  • Regent Seven Seas Cruises
  • Royal Caribbean International
  • Seabourn Cruise Line
  • SeaDream Yacht Club
  • Silversea Cruises
  • Uniworld Grand River Cruises
  • Windstar Cruises

Potential Injuries on a Cruise Ship

Unfortunately, as with any form of travel, accidents can and do happen on cruise ships. These situations are often magnified, because adequate medical attention may not be immediately available or may not be provided at all, even if available. Furthermore, cruise ships will not usually ‘divert’ to the nearest port to take care of a needy or injured passenger.

Cruise ship industry experts estimate that several thousand people per a year get seriously injured, or even die at sea. These injuries might occur due to dangerous conditions on the ship, excursion injuries, food poisoning, and injuries caused because the ship crew failed to take necessary precautions in poor weather.

Shore Excursions

Cruise ships earn significant revenue from the shore excursions, which they generally contract out for with local companies. Unfortunately, just like with any trip, accidents and injuries can occur.

Often, the cruise lines bear responsibility for their failure to supervise the operations of these local tour operators properly. For example, not having the proper equipment, inadequate supervision, or poor driving resulting in an injury are all reasons to discuss your losses with an attorney who can give you the proper advice regarding recovery.

If you were injured during a shore excursion, you should be aware that the cruise line may also have liability along with the local tour operator. Often times, the tour operator has not even been safety audited by the cruise line. However, these cruise lines or the tour operator may attempt to avoid liability when an injury occurs. A seasoned cruise ship accident lawyer in Michigan could help to analyze your situation and determine whether either of these parties bears responsibility.

Cruise Ship Contract Provisions

As a cruise ship passenger, an individual should know that there are special laws, called maritime laws and conventions, that can apply to injuries aboard cruise ships. Because of these laws, an injured individual should be extremely careful about discussing any harm they sustained on a ship with anyone, including the cruise line, without first consulting a Michigan cruise ship accident lawyer who is familiar with maritime law.

Furthermore, the cruise ship companies often include special provisions and language on their tickets that limit the time in which an injured individual can file a claim. If you do not comply with these provisions, your claim might be lost. Many cruise lines limit this statute of limitations to one year from the date of an injury. Unfortunately, the notice period given by many cruise lines is even shorter in most instances, with the company requiring notice of the injury within three or six months of the event.

Cruise lines are also putting special clauses in their contracts, called forum selection clauses, which try to dictate where a lawsuit can be filed. These clauses might be inserted in the boarding documents to confuse and scare the injured passenger. For instance, Holland American Cruises’ boarding documents mandate that suits are filed in the state of Washington. These clauses are only partially effective, however, and any experienced cruise ship accident lawyer could evaluate the forum selection language and determine where a suit can be filed.

Retain a Michigan Cruise Ship Injury Attorney

If you were injured while on a cruise ship or during a cruise-related shore excursion, you may be overwhelmed and unsure of how to proceed. Unfortunately, severe injuries may affect your life long after a cruise has ended. Because of this, it is important to speak with a Michigan cruise ship lawyer about seeking compensation.

A successful claim may provide recovery for medical bills and expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages. By working with a compassionate attorney, you could get started on a claim as soon as possible. Call today to schedule a consultation.

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