David Gorewitz P.A.
Board Certified Civil Trial Lawyer
Maritime / Admiralty workers generally include merchant seamen, dredge workers, the crew of a cruise line or fishing vessel and any worker who is injured and is more or less permanently attached as a worker to a vessel or fleet of vessels. Even a worker covered by the Longshore Harbor Worker’s Compensation Act may have a claim against an owner of a vessel under the appropriate circumstances.
Injured seamen have the right to sue their maritime employers under the Jones Act for medical care, living expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and disability. Crew members also have the right to bring suit against the owners and operators of vessels for unsafe or "unseaworthy" conditions. The maritime employer has a duty to ensure that all seamen injured or ill while in the service of a vessel receive maintenance and cure benefits. See below for more information regarding the Jones Act.
Many passengers fail to appreciate that their passenger ticket contains not only their itinerary, but constitutes the legally binding "contract of carriage" with the cruise line. The tickets always contain certain pre-conditions to filing suit, such as requiring passengers to notify the cruise line in writing of their intent to assert a claim. This time period is always very short -- usually six months for personal injuries. You must comply with this notice requirement or you could lose the right to bring your personal injury action.
The tickets also contain a very short limitations period in which the lawsuit must be filed (usually one year), whereas the typical statute of limitations in Florida for personal injuries is four years and two years for wrongful death or professional malpractice. The cruise lines also require that passenger lawsuits must be filed in a certain state or city, even though the passenger purchased the ticket in another state or lives thousands of miles away in a foreign country. These contractual requirements are usually considered by the courts to be valid. We represent people in Miami, Tampa and Brevard when required to do so due to the contractual language in the ticket of passage. When required to bring suit out of state, we will associate a qualified law firm in that state to assist with the prosecution of your claim.
In spending years flying back and forth to the drilling rigs, Dave gained a unique perspective about how maritime employers defend claims. We are well prepared to represent your interests if you were injured in the maritime industry whether on a cruise ship, a tug boat or a fishing vessel.
1900 S. Harbour City Blvd.
Melbourne, Florida, 32901
David Gorewitz P.A. Attorney at Law call Us Today: 321-984-0046
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