Can you Sue a Boat Driver for Personal Injury in Florida?

September 28, 2023 | By Hancock Injury Attorney
Can you Sue a Boat Driver for Personal Injury in Florida?

We all know that most drivers have auto insurance, which Florida law requires. But what about your boat? If you get into a boat accident, does your auto policy cover that? If you’re the one injured, can you sue a boat driver?

Florida auto insurance policies don’t cover boating accidents. This means that if a boating accident leaves you with an injury, then there might be some doubt on where your compensation is coming from.

Real-Life Example: Jet Ski Rider Injured In Collision With Boat

On Thursday, December 5, 2019, a jet ski rider collided with a boat near the Treasure Island Causeway Bridge in Treasure Island.According tothe Pinellas County Sherriff’s Office, the accident happened around 12:30 p.m. when the jet ski rider was involved in a collision with a boat.

The rider suffered serious injuries and was transported to a local hospital. His injuries were serious, but he is expected to make survive. Authorities do not believe drugs or alcohol were a factor in the crash.

Who Pays In Boat Crash?

In some ways, a boating collision is like an auto accident. If the boat driver was negligent in their actions, then their negligence entitles the injured person to compensation. But, there are many differences, such as many boat operators don’t have boat insurance. These differences might make it difficult for the injured person to collect for their injuries.

Florida law requires auto insurance, but not boater’s insurance. Those who operated boats can buy liability insurance which will then cover the boat owner or operator for any damages they cause others.

You Can Sue A Boat Driver If They Have Homeowner’s Insurance

If the boat owner is a homeowner, then the injured might be able to claim compensation for any injuries on the homeowner’s insurance policy. Often, these will pay up to $100,000 in liability for injuries caused by the homeowner.

Yet, not all boaters have a homeowner’s policy which then might leave the injured out of luck getting compensation.

Making A Boating Personal Injury Claim In Florida

The injured person can make a claim against the at-fault boat driver but must prove that he or she was negligent and that the negligence must be the cause of the injuries. Simply put, negligence is any conduct where the driver didn’t give the injured person the due care they deserved. This could mean speeding, distracted boating, impaired boating, failing to give another watercraft the right-of-way.

The injured then would need to submit a claim to the insurance company involved, if any. The insurance company might settle or they might deny the claim and force the injured person to file a lawsuit.

Contact A Tampa Personal Injury Lawyer

We answer our phones 24 hours a day, seven days a week. When you contact us, we will answer your questions, make recommendations and provide you with a free, and give a confidential evaluation of your injury claim. We do this all without obligation to use our legal services.

Everyone at Hancock Injury Attorneys, from our receptionist and paralegals to ourboat accident lawyers, is committed to providing our clients with exceptional legal representation and client service.

Hancock Injury Attorneys has been representing clients in Tampa and surrounding communities for over 30 years.