We Handle Jet Ski Accident Claims in Fort Lauderdale and Throughout Florida
Jet ski accidents often present a serious threat to passengers and operators and can cause potentially fatal injuries. In many cases, companies that rent jet skis and other personal watercraft do not offer enough information to passengers and operators as to how to avoid accidents or how to file claims. It is important that you are aware of your rights when filing a claim.
At Bernheim Kelley Battista & Bliss, LLC, our Fort Lauderdale jet ski accident lawyers are experienced, justice-driven advocates for injured victims. If you or your loved one was hurt in a jet ski accident, we are more than ready to help. Contact our Fort Lauderdale law office today to set up a free, no-obligation consultation with a top-rated Florida jet ski accident attorney.
What are the Most Common Causes of Jet Ski Accidents?
Jet skis are popular in South Florida. While they can be a lot of fun, jet skis can also be quite dangerous—especially so if the proper safety precautions are not taken. According to data from the https://www.uscg.mil/, approximately 50 people are killed in jet ski accidents nationwide each year. Another 600 to 700 sustain serious injuries in jet ski accidents. The safety risk may be more pronounced, as many minor and moderate injuries are not reported. Common causes of jet ski crashes include:
- Reckless maneuvers;
- Jet ski malfunctions; and
- Lack of training/instructions by rental companies.
What are the Most Common Injuries Caused by Jet Ski Accidents?
A jet ski accident can cause very serious injuries. Whether a collision occurs between a jet ski and another watercraft, a person is harmed by a rough landing, or a person falls from a jet ski, it could be a serious medical emergency. Common injuries reported in jet ski accidents include:
- Soft tissue damage (whiplash);
- Muscle strains or sprains;
- Torn ligaments;
- Broken bones;
- Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs);
- Spinal cord damage; and
Jet Ski Injuries Require Immediate Medical Attention
If you are injured in any way on the water, it is very important for you to seek immediate medical attention. You should also notify your Fort Lauderdale personal injury lawyer of any medical attention that is required. Medical attention can help prevent a major medical issue from developing after an accident. Having proper treatment on the scene can help prevent long-term damage to internal organs. Beyond that, you cannot bring a personal injury claim for a jet ski accident in Fort Lauderdale unless you have seen a doctor.
What Damages Can Be Recovered in a Jet Ski Accident Claim in Fort Lauderdale?
Were you hurt in a jet ski accident in South Florida? If so, it is imperative that you are able to secure the financial compensation that you need to pay your bills and provide for your family. In Florida, you can hold the at-fault party legally liable for the full extent of your damages, including:
- Economic Damages: Economic damages are tangible, out-of-pocket losses, including property damages, medical bills, physical therapy, lost wages, and loss of earning power.
- Non-Economic Damages: Non-economic damages are intangible. Examples of non-economic damages in a jet ski accident case include pain and suffering, disfigurement, and disability.
Every jet ski accident injury claim is different. The value of your case will depend on a number of different factors. Our Fort Lauderdale jet ski accident lawyers have the skills and experience to help you maximize your financial recovery after a serious accident.
Should I Agree to a Personal Injury Settlement in a Jet Ski Accident Case?
You should not accept a settlement unless it provides full and fair financial compensation for both your economic and non-economic damages. Most personal injury claims are eventually settled. Indeed, only a very small share of personal injury cases end up with a verdict. Still, you should consult with an experienced Fort Lauderdale jet ski accident lawyer before reaching a settlement with an insurance company. Insurers try to settle claims for less.
How to Determine How Much is My Fort Lauderdale Jet Ski Accident Case Worth?
With limited exceptions, a personal injury settlement in Florida is designed to be compensatory in nature. Put another way, the value of your personal injury case will depend, in large part, on the extent of your damage. If another party—such as a jet ski rental company—bears liability for your accident, you should be able to recover compensation for the full extent of your damages. You do not have to figure out the value of a jet ski accident claim alone. Our experienced jet ski accident lawyer in Fort Lauderdale can review your case and help you determine how much it is worth.
Jet Ski Rules and Regulations in Fort Lauderdale
Florida regulates jet skis under its watercraft laws. Jet ski owners and jet ski rental companies must comply with certain basic rules and regulations. They could face liability if they violate these laws. Here are four of the most important jet ski rules and regulations to know about in Fort Lauderdale:
- Age: A person must be at least 14 years of age to operate a jet ski. A person must be at least 18 years of age to rent a jet ski.
- Life Jacket: A life jacket should always be used on a jet ski in Florida. Rental companies must provide a life jacket.
- Working Cut-Off Switch: A jet ski should have a working cut-off switch. Rental companies must ensure that their jet skis are seaworthy.
- No Night Time Use: As explained by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, safety regulations prevent nighttime jet ski use and rentals.
Who Can Be Held Liable for a Fort Lauderdale Jet Ski Accident?
A number of different parties may bear legal responsibility for a jet ski accident in Fort Lauderdale. Depending on the specific circumstances of the case, you may be able to bring a claim against:
- Rental Company: A jet ski rental company can be held liable for an accident if their negligence contributed to the victim’s injuries. Jet ski rental companies have a duty to provide adequate instructions and ensure their watercraft are working properly.
- Jet Ski Manufacturer: A jet ski manufacturer may potentially be liable through a defective product claim. To hold a jet ski manufacturer liable, you will generally need to prove that the jet ski itself was defective.
- Third-Party Boaters: If your jet ski accident was caused by a negligent third party, such as a boater or another jet ski operator, you may be able to hold them responsible for your accident.
Proving Liability for a Jet Ski Accident in Florida
To hold any other party legally liable for a jet ski accident, an injured victim (claimant) will need evidence. For the most part, jet ski accident claims are at-fault cases that arise based on negligence. Every jet ski accident in South Florida requires a comprehensive investigation by a Fort Lauderdale jet ski accident attorney.
Know the Statute of Limitations for a Jet Ski Accident in Florida
You must initiate a jet ski accident injury claim before the statute of limitations expires. Under Florida law (Florida Statutes § 95.11), the statute of limitations for a claim based on negligence is four years. This standard applies to jet ski accident claims. In other words, you have four years from the date of a jet ski accident to take legal action. Do not wait to get started with your case. Key evidence can easily get lost. Consult a Fort Lauderdale jet ski accident lawyer right away.
Tips for Preventing Jet Ski Accidents in Florida
As fun as jet skis can be, they have the potential to be dangerous if proper safety precautions are not taken. Here are five safety tips that you and your family can use to prevent jet ski accidents:
- Always wear a well-fitting life jacket when on a jet ski;
- Ensure that the operator and any passenger is properly trained on jet ski usage;
- Avoid allowing young children to operate a jet ski on their own;
- Refrain from riding a jet ski in adverse weather conditions; and
- Never operate a jet ski while intoxicated by alcohol.
Can I Post About a Jet Ski Accident on Social Media?
No—at least not until your personal injury claim is resolved. The impulse to share important details about your life on social media is understandable. The Pew Research Center reports that nearly three-quarters of U.S. adults are active on social media. That being said, you should not post anything about a jet ski accident on social media if you are preparing to bring a personal injury claim. Anything you share could impact your case—even if you have strong privacy settings. It is easy for your social media posts to get twisted or taken out of context. Avoid sharing details about your jet ski accident on social media.
When Should I Hire a Jet Ski Accident Attorney?
Be proactive. It is best to consult with a qualified personal injury lawyer as soon as possible after a serious jet ski accident. As soon as you become injured while on a jet ski, you should seek medical attention. Your next step is to get professional legal guidance and support. You want to make sure that your attorney knows all of the information that is available to you at the time. A good lawyer will be able to gather the information that you need. In addition, if your injury involves damage to property, then you may have additional damages to seek under civil law. When a personal injury claim is filed in the court system, there is usually a lot of documentation required. Make sure that you have an attorney who knows how to deal with these types of legal issues and more.
How Can BK Law Firm Help in a Jet Ski Accident Case in South Florida?
Jet ski accident injury claims are complicated. You do not have to navigate the legal system or go up against the big insurance company alone. At Bernheim Kelley Battista & Bliss, LLC, we are devoted to helping injured victims get real justice and real results. When you reach out to our Fort Lauderdale office, you will have a chance to work with a Florida jet ski accident attorney who can:
- Conduct a free, comprehensive review and evaluation of your personal injury claim.
- Investigate the jet ski accident, gathering all of the evidence that you need to move forward;
- Connect you with the right doctors, organize your medical records, and establish damages;
- Represent you in any settlement negotiations with defendants and/or insurers; and
- Take action to help you secure the maximum compensation in your jet ski accident case.
Call Our Fort Lauderdale Jet Ski Accident Lawyer Today
At Bernheim Kelley Battista & Bliss, LLC, our Fort Lauderdale jet ski accident attorneys are standing by, ready to protect your rights. If you or someone close to you was hurt in a jet ski accident, we are here as a legal resource. Contact us today to set up your free, no-commitment consultation. We handle jet ski accident injury claims in Fort Lauderdale, Broward County, and throughout Florida.