Chattanooga Boating Accident Attorney
The Davis Firm, LLC represents people in Georgia and Tennessee who have been hurt in boating accidents due to the negligence of others. When someone chooses to operate a boat recklessly, with little experience, while intoxicated, or any other irresponsible manner and causes you harm, you may have the right to seek fair compensation for your injuries.
Firm founder Scott N. Davis will treat you and your boating injury claim with the utmost respect. Attorney Davis served as a Judge Advocate for the U.S. Air Force and has successfully tried more than 200 cases to verdict.
He has worked tirelessly on behalf of those who have been injured in Georgia and Tennessee after leaving his 15-year position as an insurance defense attorney. As a result, he knows how to take on the major insurance companies to aggressively pursue the full compensation you deserve.
How a Lawyer Can Help After a Boating Accident
The aftermath of a boating accident can be overwhelming. You may be struggling with physical injuries and unexpected expenses. Trying to recover from serious injuries and handle an injury claim on your own can be challenging, if not impossible.
Instead, hire lawyers who know how to collect and secure evidence and negotiate with the insurance company to seek the full compensation you need.
An attorney from our firm can help you through the process of recovering for your boating accident injury. Mr. Davis, our firm founder, has years of experience as a negotiator and personal injury trial lawyer. He is well-respected by other attorneys. He brings extensive legal knowledge and skills to every accident case he handles and has specific experience handling boat accident claims.
Compensation After a Boating Accident
If you are injured in a boating accident, you deserve to be made whole. This means that the compensation you receive should bring you as close as possible to the way you were before the accident. What was your quality of life prior to the accident? This is how you should think of how you should be compensated.
There are a number of different damages that you may be entitled to as a result of a boating accident. These include:
- Medical bills – If you are seriously injured in a boating accident, you will likely incur expensive and unexpected medical bills. Medical bills that you may be compensated for include any treatment for injuries from the accident. It can include seeing a doctor, completing physical therapy, surgery costs, and many other treatment costs. Even if you do not think at first that you were injured, it is important to have an examination by a doctor immediately after the boating accident. Some serious injuries involve delayed symptoms and could be life-threatening if left untreated.
- Pain and suffering – How has your quality of life suffered? Are you in pain? Can you no longer perform the activities you once enjoyed? These things may be recoverable as damages in your boating accident injury case. It includes both physical and mental quality of life, such as the ability to do activities you once enjoyed, and mental trauma from dealing with the accident. You will want to make a case for how severe your injuries are and how much your life has been impacted on a personal level to help determine how much you should be compensated for pain and suffering damages.
- Property damage – If your boat or other water equipment was damaged in a boating accident, you may be entitled to reimbursement for the loss. Take note of anything of value that was damaged or destroyed, so that it can be considered during negotiations or at trial in your case. Hold on to all receipts from getting your property repaired or replaced.
- Lost wages – If you have lost income because you were unable to work due to a boating accident, you may be entitled to compensation for your lost wages. You must show that you could not work or missed work because of the boating accident-related injuries. The accident must be the direct cause of why you could not work. The process of calculating your lost wages will vary depending on how you get paid.
- Out-of-pocket expenses – Any loss you incurred as a direct result of your boating accident can be compensated in a claim. These other expenses can include things such as over-the-counter medical supplies and transportation costs to and from medical appointments.
Tragically, boating accidents may result in fatal injuries. If a close relative was killed in a boating accident in Georgia or Tennessee, we can help you file a wrongful death claim. The compensation you may be eligible for through this claim includes:
- Medical expenses – If your loved one spent time in the hospital after the boating accident before succumbing to their injuries, you may recover compensation for these expenses.
- Funeral expenses – The costs of the funeral and burial of your loved one may be covered in a wrongful death claim.
- Loss of income – A lawyer can help you calculate the amount of money your loved one would have earned throughout their lifetime had the boating accident not taken their life.
- Loss of consortium – You can also recover compensation for the loss of companionship. A lawyer can help you calculate a monetary value for this subjective loss.
We can help you determine what types of compensation you may be able to recover in your specific case. The exact amount you receive will vary depending on the specifics of your situation.
Who Can Be Held Responsible After a Boating Accident?
To hold someone financially accountable for the losses you sustained in an accident, you will have to prove that they caused the accident by acting in a negligent manner. Negligence means something very specific in the legal world. You will have to prove four specific elements of negligence. These elements are:
- Duty – The first step to establishing negligence is to prove that the person owes you a duty of care. Typically, if you are on a boat, the boat operator owes you a duty to operate the boat to a certain standard of safety. The standard is based on following certain rules and the way reasonable boat operators would handle a situation.
- Breach of duty – Next, you need to establish that the person who owed you a duty breached the duty. This means that they did not perform at the correct standard of operating the boat.
- Causation – You will then have to prove that the breach of duty directly caused your injuries. Medical records are key to proving this element of negligence, as they can establish exactly when and how an injury occurred.
- Damages – Finally, you must show that you suffered damages as a result of the boating accident. Holding on to your medical bills and other receipts is crucial for proving this element.
Typically, the owner or operator of the boat you were on or the operator of another boat will be the person who is liable for your injuries. If you are able to show that the person engaged in behavior that meets all of the above elements of negligence, you may be entitled to compensation.
In addition to the boat’s owner and operator, other potentially liable parties include, for example:
- A boat charter company
- The boat’s manufacturer
- The company that maintains the boat
- Safety equipment manufacturers
Common Causes of Boating Accidents
Boating accidents can occur in a variety of ways. Your lawyer can investigate the incident to uncover the cause. There are some common causes of boating accidents, which include the following:
- Distracted operation – Boat operators must remain vigilant to look out for objects in the water, other boats, swimmers, wakes, and more. If an operator is distracted, they may miss something in the water and cause a serious accident.
- Intoxicated operation – Operating a boat is very similar to operating a car and doing so while under the influence of drugs or alcohol is just as dangerous. Unfortunately, drinking while out on the water is a very common behavior, but it is still dangerous and can still cause serious accidents.
- Speeding – Even though you may feel like you’re all alone out there on the water, the reality is there are many possible obstacles while boating. If you operate your boat at too high a speed, you may not be able to react in time when you notice something in the water or another boat crosses your path.
- Violating boating laws – Just like on the road, there are rules for how you can operate a boat. If an operator disregards these rules, they put the safety of everyone on their boat and everyone else on the water at risk.
- Equipment failure – Boats must be maintained in order to function properly. If a boat owner fails to maintain their boat, the boat may malfunction while out on the water.
- Improper safety precautions – Boats should be equipped with safety equipment such as life vests and first aid kits. If your boat is involved in an accident and does not have the proper safety equipment on board, the accident may go from bad to catastrophic.
Whatever the cause of your boating accident was, we are available to discuss your case and your best legal options for pursuing recovery for all your losses.
Types of Boating Accident Claims Our Law Firm Can Help You With
There are many ways to get into a boating accident. We have experience with many different varieties of water accidents, including:
- Jet Ski accidents
- Pontoon boat accidents
- Bass boat accidents
- Speedboat accidents
- Kayak accidents
- Canoeing accidents
- Sailboat accidents
- Yacht accidents
- Duck boat accidents
Regardless of what type of boating accident you have been involved in, our Chattanooga boating accident attorneys can help.
What to Do After a Boating Accident
The first thing to do after an accident is to make sure that all medical emergencies and injuries have been addressed. Safety is the most important thing. Even if you initially do not think you were hurt, it is important to seek medical attention, because some serious injuries involve delayed symptoms.
Always report the accident. If serious injury to a person or vessel has occurred, then the United States Coast Guard requires the accident to be reported. If a report is not filed immediately, follow up with the police and make sure a report is filed.
Next, gather information. If possible, take pictures of the accident scene, including injuries, boat damage, weather conditions, and more. Exchange information with the operator and passengers of other boats involved in the accident, if applicable. Gather the insurance information of both the operator of your boat and the operator of the other boats. When exchanging information, be sure not to make any statements about your injuries or apologize for the accident.
Most importantly, call our Chattanooga injury lawyers at The Davis Firm, LLC. We are ready to be your strongest ally and advocate throughout the claims process and can work to seek the maximum amount of compensation possible.
Get Started on Your Case NowCall Us at 423-756-3591
Call Us Right Away for Legal Help After a Boating Accident
If you have been severely injured in a boating accident, time is of the essence. Contact The Davis Firm, LLC to take decisive legal action to seek the compensation and justice that you deserve.
We are ready to sit down with you to discuss your rights and legal options. Schedule a free confidential consultation with us today. Call us or reach out online to get the qualified legal counsel you deserve.