Sexual Assault or Rape by Cruise Ship Passengers

Could you be raped or sexually assaulted by a fellow passenger on a cruise ship? Is it possible for one of your children to be molested or sexually assaulted by another cruise ship passenger? Unfortunately, the answer to these questions is yes.

On cruise ships, passengers often fail to use the same precautions that they would at home and in their everyday life. It is understandable but avoidable. Consider the care and cautiousness that most parents exercise in their own neighborhoods to keep their children safe.

The best cruise ship rape lawyers will tell you that not only should you use the same amount of protectiveness over your children on a cruise ship, you should increase your level of awareness. The reasons for this cautionary advice are found in the experiences of cruise ship sexual assault attorneys who have represented the children and families who were violated by predator.

Customs and Border Patrol Background Checks of Cruise Ship Passengers

While it is true that Customs and Border Patrol performs background checks on cruise ship passengers, it only does so at the end of a cruise entering a port in the United States. There have been significant number of arrests of cruise ship passengers at the end of their trips. The charges have included sexual assault, molestation and other felonies.

These background checks do nothing to keep registered sex offenders, predators or felons off your cruise ship. The cruise lines only do what is required by law. As of today, the law does not require a background check for cruise ship passengers. In the opinion of experienced cruise ship rape lawyers, more should be required of the cruise ship industry.

In response, the cruise lines point out that Disney does not perform background checks on their guests. Other industries are not required to run the background on their guests either. While that is a convenient argument, it is comparing apples and oranges. On a cruise ship, you and your family are going to be living on a small, floating city for a week or more. Given the prices of cruises, a simple background check seems justifiable.

Keep in mind that nearly 1/3 of the reported sexual assaults on cruise ships are committed against minors. In addition, cruise ships and their staff make the determination of how to label the incident for the purposes of the Cruise Vessel Security and Safety Act (CVSSA) quarterly report. When a cruise ship passenger, minor or adult, is subjected to molestation, groping, inappropriate touching, lewd and lascivious conduct, sexual harassment, or stalking, the cruise ship may not report the incident as a sexual assault.

Understanding that the cruise ships refused to perform background checks on all passengers and their financial interest in underreporting sexual assaults, parents and passengers should exercise the highest degree of caution when they set sail on a cruise ship.

Sexual Assault or Rape of a Crew Member on a Cruise Ship

It isn’t just the passengers who need to take precautions to keep themselves safe. The same risks exist for crew members also. Experienced cruise ship crew member rape lawyers have also assisted in represented crew members who were sexually assaulted or raped by passengers. While it happens with less frequency than other sexual assaults, crew members are well advised to take the necessary steps to minimize their risk.

If a crew member suffers a sexual assault or rape by a cruise ship passenger or fellow co-worker, then that crew member must report the incident to superiors and the FBI. They should follow the same steps as any other victim in this situation – demand a medical exam and rape kit; make a full report and insist on speaking directly with the FBI; and make notes, take photographs and preserve evidence where possible. To make certain that the crew member gets full justice and compensation, they should contact the best crew member rape lawyer that they can find.

Cruise Ship Can Be Responsible for a Sexual Assault or Rape by a Passenger

In general, the cruise ship has a duty of reasonable care under the circumstances. For a cruise ship to be liable, or responsible, then it must be proved that the cruise ship company had notice of the dangerous condition or situation in advance. In terms of sexual assault or rape by a passenger, experienced cruise ship rape lawyer would look for evidence that the cruise ship company knew or should have known about the passenger’s propensity to commit sexual violence.

One area of inquiry would be the passenger’s actions and behavior on the cruise trip and any prior cruises taken by that passenger. If it can be proven that the passenger had committed some form of sexual violence, assault or rape on that trip or prior trips, then it could be effectively argued that the cruise ship company had notice of the danger that this passenger presented to the crew or other passengers.

Another area of inquiry could be the amount of alcohol served to both the victim and the assailant. It is no secret that cruise ships make a significant amount of money from alcohol sales. It could be reasonably argued that the cruise ship created the danger by irresponsibly over-serving alcohol that led to the cruise ship sexual assault or rape. All of this would require an extensive investigation by your cruise ship rape lawyer to develop the necessary evidence so that you can get the justice and full compensation that you deserve.

Miami Cruise Ship Rape Lawyers Helping Sexual Violence Victims

At Gerson and Schwartz, our cruise ship rape attorneys are in Miami, Florida close to the Port Everglades and Port of Miami. Our lawyers have more than 80 years of experience in handling cruise ship sexual assault and rape cases. Let us put our experience to work for you. Contact us today at for your free consultation at 1-877-475-2905.

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