If you or someone you love has been injured in a Los Angeles boating accident you may be able to recover compensation. The process of filing a claim for damages can be overwhelming and time-consuming. If your injuries are serious, you may not have the time and energy that are necessary to get the money you deserve. The experienced Los Angeles boating accident attorneys at Citywide Law Group can help.
We have nearly two decades of experience handling complex personal injury claims. During this time, we have helped thousands of clients recover millions in much-needed compensation from at-fault parties. We are passionate advocates for our clients and will fight to maximize the settlement or award you receive. Contact our Los Angeles office today to schedule a free consultation. We will review your case, determine potential liability, and explain the process of filing a claim.
Boating Accidents in Los Angeles
Boating Accident Statistics
One of the perks of living in Los Angeles is the great year-round weather and access to outdoor recreation activities like boating. In fact, boating is so popular in Los Angeles that there are more than 80,000 registered water vessels in the county. While boating accidents may not occur every day, they do have serious consequences.
In 2016, there were 64 boating accidents in Los Angeles. Most boating accidents in Los Angeles occur on the weekend during the hot summer months of July and August. These accidents often happen during the middle of the afternoon when the waterways are most crowded. Nearly one-third of these accidents resulted in injuries or death.
Causes of Boating Accidents in Los Angeles
There are many different factors that can lead to a boating accident in Los Angeles. According to the California State Parks Division of Boating and Waterways, the leading causes of boating accidents in 2016 included:
- Operator inattention;
- Inexperienced operator;
- Machinery and equipment failures;
- Passenger or jet-skier conduct;
- Hazardous waters;
- Wake; and
- Off-Throttle steering.
Common Boating Accident Injuries
Boating accidents can result in a wide range of injuries, including:
- Broken bones and fractures;
- Burn injury;
- Traumatic brain injury;
- Lung and respiratory damage;
- Loss of limbs;
- Paralysis; and
Why Should I File a Boating Accident Claim?
You should file a personal injury claim for damages because boating accidents are expensive. If you are involved in Los Angeles a boating accident you will likely suffer property damage and are at risk to sustain serious injuries. In 2016, the total cost of the property damage for Los Angeles boating accidents exceeded $450,000. When the costs of medical bills, lost wages, and emotional distress are factored in you could be faced with tens of thousands of dollars of debt. As a victim, you may be entitled to recover that money by filing a personal injury lawsuit.
What Damages Can I Recover in a Boating Accident Claim?
If you have been injured in a Los Angeles boating accident you can ask to recover economic and non-economic damages. The specific damages you are awarded will depend on the facts and circumstances of your specific case. Hiring an experienced Los Angeles boating accident attorney to handle your case will increase the likelihood of maximizing your recovery.
Economic damages are awarded to pay for financial costs you have incurred, or are likely to incur, because of your accident and injury. These include medical bills related to boating accident injuries, lost wages, and reduced earning capacity. The amount of economic damages awarded in personal injury cases will be limited to the specific financial costs you have incurred (or are likely to incur) because of the accident.
Non-economic damages, on the other hand, are awarded to compensate you for injuries that are difficult to value. Pain and suffering, emotional distress, disfigurement, and loss of enjoyment of life are commonly requested non-economic damages in Los Angeles personal injury cases. The amount of non-economic damages awarded in personal injury cases will vary significantly from case to case.
What if I Was Also Responsible for Causing My Los Angeles Boating Accident?
In California, personal injury victims are entitled to recover compensation from any liable party, even if their own negligence contributed to the accident. California law follows the theory of comparative fault. This basically means that you can recover compensation for an accident, but your award will be reduced by your own degree of negligence.
Let’s say that you were struck by another boat while enjoying a Saturday afternoon ride with your friends. You suffer property damage and injuries that cost you $10,000. If the other boater is entirely to blame for the accident you are permitted to recover $10,000 in damages. If, however, you were drinking at the time of the accident and are also to blame, you will only be able to recover a portion of those damages. If it were determined that you were 30% at fault your recovery would be capped at $70,000. If the other boater suffered injuries, they would be able to recover 30% of their injuries from you.
What Should I Do After a Los Angeles Boating Accident?
A boating accident can be a frightening experience, especially when it causes serious and life-threatening injuries. As a result, filing a personal injury lawsuit may be the furthest thing from your mind immediately following the accident. However, it is important to take the following steps after your boating accident to make sure that you are able to get the money you need and deserve.
See a Doctor
A medical evaluation will have two primary purposes. First, it will make sure that you are healthy and safe after your accident. Internal injuries can linger and get worse over time. When you get a medical evaluation immediately after your accident you reduce the risk of complications in the future. Second, your evaluation will document the injuries shortly after your accident. This will be crucial evidence in any personal injury case you decide to file in the future.
File a Police Report
While police reports are not admissible as evidence in a trial, they can be extremely helpful in your boating accident injury case. A police report is a snapshot of your accident and can be used to recall details and information that may be lost or forgotten with time. Your attorney will use the information contained in a police report to help with an independent investigation into your accident.
Speak With an Attorney
When you are injured in a boating accident you will undoubtedly be contacted by the at-fault party’s insurance company. They will try to take advantage of the overwhelming situation and scare you into accepting a low-ball settlement offer. In some cases, they may use the things you say after an accident to deny any claims you submit. Do not speak with any other parties or insurance companies before you have contacted an attorney.
At Citywide Law Group, our boating accident attorneys know the tricks and tactics that these companies will use to minimize the amounts they pay to you. We understand how to create a persuasive case and leverage these companies into offering meaningful settlements. If we are not satisfied with the offers we receive we will not hesitate to take your case to court.
Los Angeles Boating Accident Attorneys
Are you struggling with an injury related to a Los Angeles boating accident? Has your boat or water vessel been destroyed because of someone else’s negligent behavior? If so, contact the Citywide Law Group to learn about how you may be able to recover compensation with a personal injury lawsuit. For the past 17 years, our attorneys have been able to help thousands of personal injury accident victims like you recover millions in compensation. We understand that your future and well-being may depend on the outcome of your personal injury case and will fight to make sure you recover each and every cent you deserve.
You have a limited amount of time to act after your accident. In most cases, you will have two years from the date of your accident to file a personal injury claim for damages. The sooner you contact our office, the sooner we can begin to get to work on your case. The decisions you make immediately after your accident will be important for your future, so do not hesitate to call us today.