205 W. Davie Blvd. Fort Lauderdale, Florida 33315 - Call Us: 954-775-2301 - Email Us: david@irwinlegal.com

If you own a boat or are an avid boater, having a maritime lawyer on retainer is crucial. In this write-up, the experts at Irwin Law Firm, located in Miami (Fort Lauderdale), establish the importance of keeping a lawyer. After reading through this scenario, you will get to know the importance of having marine insurance.


Scenario: Establishing Why Marine Insurance Is Necessary


During a storm, three boats on the water collided, one being destroyed completely, the other two taking significant damage. The owner of the damaged boat’s slip was located at the other end of the marina’s gangway. For those that don’t know, the marina is a dock that holds supplies for the boat, and the gangway is a raised walkway. There were various cleats desperately needing repair. Even though management was informed about the problem, no action was taken to repair the cleats. As a result, two cleats got pulled out from the dock due to the storm, making the boat steer away from its course. When the claim was submitted to the insurance company to get the boat repaired, it was immediately refused. On top of that, the other boat owners were also asking for money to get their boats repaired. So what should be done to get the claim for the cost of repairing all the boats?


The Answer


In short, little to nothing can be done. The chances are high that the owner will have to cover the entire cost of the boat’s repair.


With boat ownership, there come many obligations to the owners, all of which are non-delegable. A few of these come through the contract, while others arise due to general maritime law. For example, the boat owner is obligated to keep the boat safe at the dock per the maritime law. Further, the owner will have to bear the cost for any damage caused to the boat due to the dock or equipment failure. However, if the failure couldn’t be discovered during a regular inspection, an exception can be made. But in the case above, there is no such exception as they already knew about the problem but chose to neglect it.


The Solution


For the same reason, the other boat owners will recover from him only. So to avoid that, the boat owner here (person seeking help) needs to prove that the damage inherited by other boats is due to the failure of securing them. However, it’s not the case here. As a result, the person will have to bear the cost for all the boats here, but one claim described in the question can be avoided. The person is not required to pay for the loss or damage that occurred to other boats because the Supreme Court says that damage to a recreational vessel cannot be recovered. In legal terms, it means that free time has no economic value.


The case discussed above talks about the importance of having an insurance policy in marine areas. The case here can only be covered under an insurance claim. This also shows the significance of having liability coverage and why the marinas require their tenants to maintain coverage.


Contact Us


Having marine insurance is extremely crucial. But if you need legal help in Miami (Fort Lauderdale), contact Irwin Law Firm today.