Michigan’s many lakes provide a lot of opportunities for boat enthusiasts to enjoy getting out on the water, especially during the warmer summer months. Due to the cost and inconvenience of owning a boat, however, many people may choose to rent one instead.
Boat rentals are great, but it does raise questions about who may be liable for injuries or damages if an accident occurs. Could the boat rental company be held liable in this situation?
If you were injured in a crash involving a boat rental, we are prepared to help you understand if you may have a case. We encourage you to speak with one of our dedicated boat accident lawyers in Grand Rapids about your situation as soon as possible. Initial consultations are completely free, and there is no obligation to file a claim.
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Boat injury claims are often complicated when it comes to determining liability if a crash or other boating accident occurs. There are multiple questions an attorney may ask to determine what factors may have contributed to the accident and if you have a case, including:
Boating accidents may happen more often with rentals due to the boat operator’s lack of experience. Although Michigan’s required boat safety certificate provides a certain level of knowledge, it may not be sufficient in unexpected situations on the water. Some of the most common reasons rental boating accidents occur is because of:
It may be difficult to assess a boat rental company with liability for a boating accident. Often, patrons must sign a waiver to rent a boat. This form releases them from liability for injuries you may sustain while using their boat. In short, if you sign this form you are saying that you understand the risks you are taking and agree to accept responsibility for them.
That said, waivers are not always well-written, so an attorney may be able to find a loophole that would allow you to file a claim against the boat rental company if you are injured in an accident.
Even if a boat waiver was signed, there are certain situations where the boat rental company could be held liable for your damages, such as if:
Boat rental companies are required to ensure their vessels are regularly maintained, safe to operate and free of any known dangerous conditions. Additionally, all boats on Michigan waters are required by law to have:
There are several reasons a patron may not be eligible to rent a boat, including if the patron:
If a boat rental company hires staff to operate the boat on your behalf, those staff must be properly licensed and obtain any other certifications as required by the state.
Boat rental companies are required to warn or advise patrons of the potential risks involved with boating. Sometimes these risks are listed on a waiver, but the patron should still be verbally informed by the rental company.
Additionally, the boat rental company may have liability if they knew of other risks, such as a pending storm, that could make renting the boat unsafe.
After any boating incident in Michigan, there are steps you should take to protect yourself, as well as any potential claim you may later file.
After a boating accident, you should seek medical attention right away. This step is important to your health – especially if you hit your head or possibly sustained other internal injuries. It also helps to link your injuries to the boating accident and provide support to your legal claim.
If you have a boating accident in Michigan, you are required by law to file a report within 48 hours of the incident under the following circumstances:
Other incidents that must be reported within five days:
If you can do so without placing yourself or others in danger, take photos of any damages to the boat, external hazards where the accident occurred or visible injuries. This evidence may provide insight to authorities about how the accident occurred and may also help to support your legal claim.
Boat rental accidents are complicated, and it can be difficult to obtain compensation for your injuries without knowledgeable legal representation.
Our qualified attorneys at Jay Trucks not only have extensive experience in personal injury law, but we are committed to fighting for the maximum amount of compensation possible. We know how to determine if you have a valid case and whether a boat rental company could be liable for the damages.
Millions Recovered. Call: (800) 762-8623 today.
At the law offices of Jay Trucks & Associates, we charge are no upfront costs and you do not pay us unless we recover compensation for your case. It’s also free to discuss your claim with one of our lawyers and we can help to determine if we believe you have case. If so and you choose to hire us, you are also not required to pay us while we build and work on your case.
We cover any costs that may be associated with handling your claim and when we win your case, we charge a certain percentage of the compensation award for the services that we provided. The percentage is agreed upon beforehand and may vary by the type of case.
Many at fault people often have large legal teams available from the insurance company that is defending their case. At Jay Trucks & Associates we believe that injury victims should also have access to premium quality legal advice to help level the playing field.
We have many years of experience handling cases against insurance agencies, large corporations and the legal teams that represent them. Our successes against these types of organizations enable us to offer a “no upfront fee structure” to our personal injury clients.
At Jay Trucks & Associates, we offer a Free, No-Obligation Case Consultation where we can discuss the details of your claim, review the legal process specific to your claim and work on a contract explaining our fees for handling the case. During this consultation you can ask the attorney any questions you may have about your claim.
When a settlement is reached or a jury comes to a verdict in your favor, you will be given a closing statement, which will include the gross amount of funds we secured along with the costs associated with the case.
If you owe any medical bills or your health insurance company has placed a lien on any compensation you receive, we can assist with resolving these debts. These debts will also be included in your closing statement.
Compensation is not paid out until you have reviewed and signed the closing statement.
Other law firms may require you to pay them hundreds of dollars per hour to work on your case. This usually includes the time spent answering a phone call or reading and responding to emails. This may make you shy away from calling the firm to ask questions over concerns about how much it will cost you. Some lawyers may also charge a retainer fee, which means you may need to come up with several hundreds or thousands of dollars before they will even take or start working on your case.
You can contact us by calling (800) 762-8623 or by filling out our Free Case Consultation form. There is no commitment required even after your initial no-cost consultation.
Our firm has decades of legal experience protecting the rights of injured victims throughout Michigan and has recovered over $500 million in compensation.
Contact Michigan’s Lawyers for the Injured today. Ph: (800) 762-8623