Texas is a travel hub for cruise ships, shipping, commercial fishing, and other boating activity. The more activity there is, the higher the chance of accidents. Boating and shipping accidents can involve crashes between boats or injuries on-board. In many cases, the injured parties are often tourists, people riding speedboats and pleasure crafts on vacation, or workers on cruise ships and commercial vessels.
If you or a loved one was injured in an accident involving boats or ships or was injured in an accident aboard a ship, talk to an attorney about your case today. The Dallas boat accident and maritime injury lawyers at The Queenan Law Firm represent accident victims and help them fight to get compensation for their injuries, including medical expenses and lost wages. To schedule a free consultation with our Dallas maritime lawyers, contact our law offices today at (817) 476-1797.
Suing for a Boating Accident in Dallas, TX
Boat accidents will usually fall under one of two categories of law. First, for accidents on lakes, rivers, ponds, and other small bodies of water, as well as accidents at sea that happen within a close distance to land, Texas’ laws might apply. This means that these cases are handled much like any accident claim for injuries that happen on land using Texas law and Texas court cases set the rules.
Alternatively, cases might be handled under maritime law. Maritime law refers to a field of law that deals with trade goods and shipping as well as passenger crafts and insurance disputes. The phrase “admiralty law” is sometimes used interchangeably or to distinguish other legal issues from these issues. This law governs many affairs of boats and shipping, especially for commercial vessels and accidents involving them.
If you were injured in any accident, you should be able to file a claim for negligence. Rules may be different under Texas law and maritime law, but the general makeup of the case is the same. In these cases, the injured victim must show that the at-fault party caused their injuries by failing to use the proper care or skill that the situation demanded. Specifically, this requires showing four elements:
- The at-fault party owed the victim a duty,
- The at-fault party breached that duty,
- The breach caused the victim’s injuries, and
- The victim suffered damages the court can compensate.
In many cases, the duty is the hardest part to define. The generic duty is the duty to act with the reasonable care a pilot, captain, or owner would use in the given situation. Alternatively, the duty may be to ensure the vessel is safe. Other times, specific laws or common safety practices might dictate a more specific duty the at-fault party owed the victim. Rules about passing, how to enter shipping lanes, or even signs stating you are in a “no wake zone” might help define the duty. If you can prove that the at-fault party failed to use the proper care or skill to uphold that duty, and those actions or inactions caused your injuries, you may be able to win your case.
Recoverable Damages for Maritime Injury and Boat Crash Cases
If you were seriously injured in a boat accident in Dallas, you could face substantial damages. These could include serious pain and suffering from severe injuries. In addition, your injuries could require expensive medical procedures and treatment to help you recover. If you are too injured to work, you may also face damages in the form of lost wages. Inability to return to work could also mean that you face a reduced earning capacity going forward. Any of these damages may be claimed as part of a boat accident lawsuit.
You may also face other damages as a result of your injuries. Being too injured to perform duties around the house may mean needing to hire expensive household help, which could justify compensation. You may also miss out on other duties to your spouse, which they could sue for compensation for.
You may also be entitled to additional damages if the at-fault party caused your injuries through serious negligence or repeated bad actions. Courts issue these additional damages to punish the at-fault party or make an example of them, which is why these damages are called “punitive” or “exemplary” damages.
Under Texas law, there are no caps or limitations on these damages. Some states restrict the amount you can receive in pain and suffering damages, which can often be some of the highest payments in your case. Because of this, you may be entitled to damages that fully cover your needs after a serious boating or marine accident.
Dallas Boat Accident Lawyers Representing Maritime Injury Victims
If you or a loved one was injured in a boating, shipping, or marine accident, talk to an attorney today. Dallas boating and maritime accident lawyer Kevin Queenan of The Queenan Law Firm represents injury victims and fights to get them and their families compensation they need after serious accidents. To set up a free, no-obligation consultation on your case, contact our law offices today at (817) 476-1797.