As with car accidents, when a boating accident occurs, it’s important to piece together what happened directly before and during the collision to determine who may be at fault. In some cases, it may be concluded that a combination of factors from both sides caused the accident. Claims for these types of accidents are a little different and can be more complicated than a claim against a single at-fault party.
How Two People Can Be Considered At-Fault
In a car accident case, two people may be considered at-fault if they both contributed to what caused the accident. For example, if one person made an illegal turn and the other person was speeding, police officers and insurance companies may consider the case as shared fault.
In boating accident cases, the laws are similar. If one person was speeding in a no-wake zone and the other was operating their boat under the influence of alcohol, it may be determined that both parties contributed to and are at-fault for the accident.
Compensation in Cases of Shared Fault
In cases where two people share fault for a boating accident, a percentage may be determined to help calculate total compensation for both parties. For example, one boat operator may be 70% at-fault for the accident while the other boat operator is only 30% at fault. In a case like this, the party with the most shared fault would likely be responsible for compensation, less the percentage assigned to the party with the least shared fault.
In cases where one party is considered at or more than 50% at-fault, they would be unlikely to receive any compensation from the other party.
When to Contact an Attorney
Many people mistakenly believe that if they are at-fault — to any degree — for a boat accident, then they are ineligible to collect any type of compensation. This is not necessarily true. If you were partly at fault, you may still be eligible to bring a claim against the party who has more shared fault, meaning their actions contributed to the accident more than yours did.
Anytime you are involved in a boating accident, it’s important to reach out to a skilled boat accident attorney to determine what your legal rights are and if you may be entitled to compensation for medical expenses, property damage, lost wages, and pain and suffering.
Call Mazow | McCullough Today for Experienced Boat Accident Representation
At Mazow | McCullough, PC, our seasoned boat accident lawyers can help you navigate the difficult waters of bringing forward a claim. Contact us today for a consultation to discuss your case at 855-693-9084.