Who is liable in a boating accident?
There may be causes for a boating accident that are not clear or simple. Some accidents are caused by operator error, some accidents may be caused by a malfunction to the operating system of the boat. Some accidents may be caused by the Boat Owner or Operator. Other accidents could be partly caused by the operation of the Marina.
Is it worth getting a boating accident lawyer?
It is worth consulting with a boating accident letter to assess whether or not you have a valid legal claim to advance to your own Insurer for Accident Benefits or to the at-fault driver/insurance in tort. There is no fee for the consultation so you do not have to pay anything out of pocket. The advice is free and based on our initial meeting, the team at CRB Law would be able to inform you as to the benefits to proceed forward on your claim arising from your injuries arising from the collision.
When should I hire a boating accident lawyer?
It is never too early to consult a lawyer after you have been involved in a boating accident. There are required time limits, so time is always a factor.
There is no fee for our initial consultation, where we will assess the Claim and inform you on your next steps.
How long does it take to settle a boating accident claim in Ontario?
There are Claims that can settle within weeks of an accident and others that are more suitable to resolve within years.
Many Claims do not have to “go to Court” or “sue the other driver”. They are resolved with the Insurance Company before this if the facts are determined and the parties are reasonable. This is often an outcome that is beneficial for both the injured party and the Insurer.
If the claim does “go to Court”, the process is initiated by a Statement of Claim in the Superior Court of Justice in Ontario. From there, the process is as follows:
- Examination for Discovery, where the sides provide evidence to the Claim and the Defence. The Discovery process is typically completed within 6 to 9 months after the receipt of the Statement of Defence.
- Mandatory Mediation, which is a good opportunity for the injured person and the Insurer to meet and obtain a settlement. Many claims through the effectiveness of the mediation process are resolved at this proceeding. In general, there are no fees to be paid by the injured person through the Mediation Process. The Mediation takes place typically within 6 months after the date of the completion of the Examination for Discovery.
- Pre-Trial Conference before a Judge of the Superior Court of Justice. Cases that are not resolved at the Mediation Session would be subject to moving forward in the Court system. This is another excellent opportunity for parties to reach a settlement.
- Trial Date, which can be scheduled anywhere from 6 months to up to 2 years after the Pre-Trial. This does not mean that your case goes to Trial but only that a date is scheduled. In fact, many cases that are not resolved at the Pre-Trial Conference do resolve thereafter and before a Trial date without the need to litigate in Court.
How much should I settle for in a boating accident?
Just as every injured person is unique with a unique set of facts, every settlement for your injuries in a boating accident is different and unique. There is no general “$X” settlement for this type of injury.
You need the expertise of a lawyer to be able to identify all of the areas of possible compensation for your case and what is a reasonable assessment for your Claim.
How common are boating accidents?
Unfortunately, boating accidents are quite common in Southwestern Ontario. There are many opportunities with the Detroit River, Lake St. Clair and Lake Erie for boaters to access the waterways.
A fun and leisurely afternoon may not always turn out to what one would expect when you arrive on the boat. Injuries happen during tubing , waterskiing, use of jet skis or a collision in the marina, with other boats or during the trip.
Injuries from boating accidents can be devastating and life altering. Significant limb related injuries to your arm or leg can result from the impact with the boat’s propellor. Fractures to a bone from a fall sustained from being on a boat can result in a collision or accident.
What happens if someone gets hurt on my boat?
If you have a boat and someone gets injured then you may face the possibility of a Legal Claim for any contribution that the boat owner/operator has to the unfortunate accident .
Many boat owners/operators will have insurance in order to cover the cost of the boat if it is damaged. This insurance will also likely have what is called Liability Insurance for claims that are advanced to a boat owner.
If you own a boat it would be wise to consider and implement marine insurance on your boat for protection for the boat and those who are on it in the case of an accident that causes injury to your passenger.
What happens if you crash a boat?
If you crash a boat then you should contact your Marine Insurer as soon as possible to report the incident. If there are any injuries then please seek immediate help.
What do you do if someone hits your boat?
It would be helpful to obtain the information on the boat that hit you to include the name and contact information for the operator, a description of the boat and whether or not there is valid insurance available from the operator that hits your boat.
Can I sue the other driver if I am injured in a boating accident?
If the driver/operator of the Boat was negligent in leading to the cause of the boating accident then you may have a Claim to sue the driver.
A Claim may also be possible against the owner of the boat for any contribution that the boat owner may have to the injuries that you have sustained.
Do Passengers Have a Claim in a Boating Accident?
Yes, a passenger could have a claim in a boating accident. A Passenger is able to claim against the at fault boat driver or a claim if their own boat driver is to be determined to be at fault. The driver’s insurance company will then respond in order to deal with the Claim.
Boating Accident Basics
Living on the Great Lakes provides all of us who live here with access to a variety of enjoyable activities, including pleasure boating, jet skiing, scuba diving, water skiing, swimming and fishing. However, each year many are severely injured or killed if the water craft operators are careless, untrained or intoxicated.
Most boating accidents in our area will take place on the Great Lakes. This could result in cross-border issues and jurisdictional disputes. If you do not act you could lose your right to recover for your pain and suffering.
Crucial Mistakes to Avoid
- Failing to Report the Accident
- Failing to Collect Evidence
- Not Seeking Medical Treatment
- Admitting Fault
Common Boating Accidents
Injuries commonly associated with such accidents include:
- collisions with other watercrafts or rocks
- slip and falls on a boat
Common Boating Accidents causes:
- defects in the boat or PWC
- unexpected bad weather
- lack of safety warnings
- mechanical malfunctions
- carbon monoxide poisoning in a small enclosed space
Boating Accident Claims Time Limit in Chatham
The Limitations Act in Ontario applies to the commencement of claims for personal injury damages, including injuries that result from a boating accident.
The general time limitation is up to 2 years from the time of the accident which resulted in an injury from the boat accident in Chatham and throughout Ontario.
Possible Options for Compensation
There are various potential sources of compensation for injuries sustained in a boating accident in Chatham, Ontario.
Statutory Accidents Benefits.
Depending on the size of the Boat involved to include the weight and motor size there is a possibility that certain claims may be covered under a standard Ontario homeowners insurance policy. It is important to consult with our lawyers at CRB Law to determine if this is available for you in order to access benefits for the injury arising from the boating accident.
The fault for Boating accidents is determined following Federal along with general common law rules of negligence. A tort claim means that you will be recovering damages for the injuries you will have sustained plus the out-of-pocket costs that your insurer would not have covered and income losses.
Below are some things that a tort claim can offer compensation for.
- Home maintenance expenses
- Medical and rehabilitation expenses
- Economic compromise
- Income loss
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Pain and suffering