Your cruise ticket is more than just a piece of paper that lets you board the ship. It is a well-crafted legal document, written strongly in favor of the cruise company. Your ticket governs the relationship between you and the cruise line, and cruise lines count on you not reading the fine print. Where You Must File Suit The cruise line’s “forum selection clause” is enforceable under Admiralty Law and specifies exactly where you must bring suit against the line, regardless of where you live. For example, suits against Holland America usually must be brought in Seattle, and suits against Carnival Cruise lines have to be brought in Miami. Cruise ship accident law firms are prepared to work within these and other constraints to help you with your claim. Without Cruise Lawsuit Experience, Even a Gifted Injury Attorney May Fail Even the simplest cruise injury lawsuits are complicated, possibly involving federal law, maritime law, and sometimes the laws of other countries. A lawyer who is talented and experienced in dealing with ordinary personal injury cases may have great difficulty with cruise lawsuits because of this. If you’re injured on a cruise, you need a cruise ship law firm with a track record of success against cruise lines. Your Onboard Medical Records If you’re injured and treated onboard a cruise ship, the cruise company has medical records that may include a statement from you about what happened. You have the legal right to these records. If your cruise ship refuses to give you a copy of your cruise ship medical record, your cruise ship accident law firm knows how to get them as well as other important records regarding your claim. Cruise Lines Affirmative Defenses Cruise lines frequently respond with “affirmative defenses,” where they affirm part of your claim, but offer other information they believe justifies their conduct or mitigates it. Cruise lines are experts at affirmative defenses, often providing dozens in response to a claim. But an experienced cruise ship injury attorney knows how to combat these. Don’t be afraid to stand up to a cruise line if you’re injured while on a cruise.
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