Injured on a Holland America Cruise Ship?

Although it is a relative newcomer to the cruise ship industry, this Carnival Cruise Lines subsidiary already boasts some of the largest vessels in the world. The new Pinnacle class ships, including the MS Koningsdam, weigh nearly 100,000 tons, have twelve or more enclosed decks, and carry almost 3,000 passengers. These ships are built for long excursions that last up to 60 days. The vast number of onboard activities, coupled with the vast amount of time on the open water, creates a vast opportunity for on-board injuries.

At Gerson & Schwartz, PA, we give your claim the attention it deserves. Furthermore, because our attorneys have over 80 years of combined experience, we use proven methods to deliver results that make a difference. This combination of experience and compassion, along with our location close to the federal courthouse in Miami, makes us one of the leading cruise ship injury law firms.

Cruise Ship Law

Holland America vessels are Dutch ships that are operated largely in international waters by a Washington-headquartered company that is owned by a Miami-based firm. Choice of law is a major concern in these cases, because it is very difficult to litigate cases in unfamiliar locations. Most Holland America tickets have disclaimers that designate Florida as the appropriate forum.

The good news is that our main office is located just a few blocks from the Miami federal courthouse, and our professionals are well-versed in all the applicable rules and procedures, even the ones that are unwritten. The bad news is that Florida law has a one-year statute of limitation on cruise ship injury claims, in most cases. Furthermore, most cruise ship lines require victims to file a written notice of claim within six months of the injury, so time is of the essence in these proceedings.

Cruise ship owners have a heightened duty to keep their passengers safe from harm. This obligation comes from a combination of international agreements, like the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea, and domestic laws, like the federal Shipping Act of 1984.

Cruise Ship Injuries

Possibly dangerous activities, like rock-climbing, basketball, and even skydiving, already have the potential to cause serious injury. The risk is multiplied when considering the large number of passengers and the relatively small number of available crew to supervise them. Some common cruise ship injuries include:

  • Broken Bones: Initially, these injuries often require metal pins, screws, or plates. Then, once the bones begin to heal, the victims may face weeks or months of painful and expensive physical therapy to recover lost functions.

  • Spinal Injuries: A hard fall, or a fall from a height, often causes severe damage to vulnerable heads, necks, and backs.

  • Intentional Torts: The cruise ship owner may be responsible for robberies, assaults, and other on-board incidents, whether the perpetrators are passenger or crew.

Many cruise ship passengers are over 65 or under 15, and these age groups are the most vulnerable possible victims.

Connect with Experienced Attorneys

The seasoned professionals at Gerson & Schwartz, PA, routinely handle complex cruise ship injury matters. Contact us today for a free consultation, because you have a limited amount of time to act.

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