Luxury Yacht Crashes and Injuries
According to Forbes, as of 2016 there were 4,476 superyachts in the world. These are defined as being at least 100 feet long. But these massive ships do not operate themselves. The vast majority of these vessels are operated year round, even at times when the owner may have no personal use for them. There may be a variety of uses, such as business, entertaining, or even leasing them out for hire to others. In general, however, they have full-time crews that handle everything from the maintenance to food service. Just like any job though, there will be injuries. But the law can get a bit tricky when injuries take place on a privately owned superyacht, especially when injuries occur at sea.
Common Superyacht Injuries
There are a lot of ways a crew member of a superyacht can be injured on the job, but perhaps the most common injuries involve:
- Slip and fall injuries
- Yacht crashes
- Equipment and power tool injuries
- Injuries while mooring the vessel
- Falls from heights
- Head injuries
- Falling objects
Who is Responsible For Luxury Yacht Crew Injuries?
Under the Jones Act, the crew member’s employer is responsible for injuries to crew. Many luxury yachts are not owned by individuals, but are rather owned by corporations or private trusts and partnerships. Fortunately, experienced maritime injury lawyers know where to look to identify those with responsibility for taking care of injuries on luxury yachts. Depending on the nature of the injuries, the following may be responsible:
- Individual owners
- Limited liability companies
- Private Family Trusts
- Negligent Mechanics
- Negligent or careless companies that lease vessels
Compensation Available for Work Related Injuries as Crew on a Superyacht
There are a number of things you can claim in order to get compensated for injuries aboard a luxury yacht. If you are a crew member, such as an entertainer, custodian, engineer, captain, waitstaff, cook, or any other worker aboard a yacht, you may have a right to receive compensation for your:
- Lost income
- Money for your medical expenses
- Funds to support you while you heal from your injuries
Is it Necessary to Hire a Lawyer to Help?
Many people believe their employer will “do the right thing” and help them recover after an injury. In the vast majority of cases, this does not happen. Instead, many superyachts are operated by corporate owners who owe duties to shareholders. Their goal is to avoid financial losses. When a worker is injured, it is in their interests not to pay. Therefore, many of the insurance companies that insure these vessels will fight very hard to make sure you receive little to nothing for your injuries.
At Michael F. Guilford, P.A., our team understands maritime law. We know the law of the high seas and understand what it takes to ensure crew members are compensated for their injuries. If you’ve been seriously hurt in a work injury aboard a superyacht, call Michael F. Guilford, P.A. today to schedule your own personalized free consultation.