Although boating license requirements for people of a certain age are not as strict as those necessary to drive a motor vehicle, accidents between vessels out on the water can be just as dangerous as wrecks on land. In light of that, demanding fair financial recovery from the person responsible for causing a boat collision or other type of accident could be crucial. That applies not just to protecting an injured person’s financial security, but also their future personal and professional prospects. But most of all, boating laws helps encourage everyone to be safe out on the water so what we love and cherish most is protected.
If you or a loved one were hurt in an accident involving a rented or privately owned watercraft, you should strongly consider seeking help from a seasoned personal injury attorney with experience handling cases of this unique nature. A Macon boat accident lawyer could be the steadfast ally you need to effectively hold a negligent party liable for your injuries and recover compensation.
Proving Someone Else at Fault for a Boat Accident
Just like motor vehicle drivers, boat operators take on an implicit legal duty to act responsibly at all times while in motion. This obligation includes adhering to applicable boating laws, as well as maintaining awareness of their surroundings. If a boater fails to fulfill this responsibility and instead acts in a reckless or careless way, they could bear financial liability for any and all consequences of an accident caused by their breach of duty.
Various types of irresponsible behavior could potentially justify a boat accident lawsuit, from overtly illegal actions like exceeding local speed limits on the water, to momentary lapses in concentration that lead to a collision. To successfully compel financial restitution, though, it is necessary to prove that a specific irresponsible act was the direct and primary cause of an accident.
Relevant evidence in this regard could include:
- Reports filed by law enforcement officers who responded to an accident scene
- Information included in the independent boat accident reports mandated under Official Code of Georgia § 52-7-14 for all incidents resulting in substantial physical injury
- Debris, and photos or videos from the accident scene
- Testimony from witnesses
A Macon boat collision attorney could provide irreplaceable assistance with collecting, cataloguing, and presenting that evidence in an efficient manner.
Recovering for All Available Damages
A person found legally liable for a boat accident based on their own negligence may be held accountable for all economic and non-economic consequences of that incident. This means that an injured party could demand restitution for objective financial losses and more subjective personal forms of harm, including but not restricted to:
- Past and future medical expenses
- Vessel repair/replacement costs
- Lost or damaged personal property
- Lost work income and/or future earning capacity
- Physical pain from injuries
- Emotional and psychological trauma
- Lost enjoyment of life
Importantly, though, O.C.G.A. § 51-12-33 allows courts to reduce available compensation by a percentage of fault assigned the injured. O.C.G.A. §51-11-7 prohibits any plaintiff found to be 50 percent or more to blame from recovering any money at all. Support from a boat accident lawyer in Macon could be essential to overcoming these possible obstacles to recovery.
Macon Personal Injury Lawyers at Childers & McCain, LLC Seek Justice for Victims of Boat Accidents
Accidents on the water give rise to civil litigation just like accidents on land but that does not mean both types of claims work exactly the same way. An experienced Macon personal injury lawyer at Childers & McCain, LLC can help guide you through the complexities of your boat accident claim.
Following a serious boat accident, you should reach out to lawyers who know how to pursue serious injury claims. Our legal team could provide the help you need. If you live on the water, our attorneys may even meet you at your dock. It wouldn’t be the first time. Call us at 478-254-2007 or reach us online. We offer free consultations.