Monday, January 23, 2012

"How Not to Waive Your Legal Rights on a Cruise"

See a good article in the Herald by Miami attorney Gabrielle D'Alemberte.

Those of us used to the American tort system and the ready availability of top-notch (and not so top-notch) "plaintiff's lawyers" will be shocked to learn of the severely restricted rights of cruise ship passengers to compensation for injury or of the families of cruise ship passengers who lose their lives as a result of the negligence of the cruise ship line.

Frankly, I doubt the efficacy of Ms. D'Alemberte's self-help advice about marking up one's cruise ship ticket as he boards the boat. But at least she gives a heads-up on the unfamiliar legal world that one enters when taking a cruise, especially on a foreign line.

My advice is for one to purchase reasonably broad insurance for life's contingencies (life, disability, medical), to the extent that one can. You can get extra coverage for a given vacation or trip, just for that trip. As to getting someone else to compensate you or your family for life's contingencies? If you get hit by a Coke truck on Flagler Street that was running a red light, then good for you. But don't count on it.

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