Life is good when you’re enjoying one of the dozens of lakes in and around St. Paul. Maybe you pass the day with friends and family out on Como Lake or head north of the city to Lake Johanna, just off 35 West.
Wherever you go, you just want to relax without a care in the world while others do the same. In a perfect world, the day continues without a hitch. However, in our world, people often act carelessly, with the result of injuring someone. When they do, a St. Paul boat accident attorney can help.
There’s no excuse for negligence, which is why an avenue exists for compensation for people injured by someone else’s mistakes. As a victim, you don’t have to deal with your losses alone. They are the responsibility of the person who hit your boat or engaged in another negligent act that caused you pain.
Why Choose Tyroler Leonard Injury Law?
We Go the Distance for Our Clients
Maximum compensation is one reason you should choose Tyroler Leonard Injury Law to handle your boat accident claim. When our firm takes a case, our boat accident lawyer fights hard until our client gets the compensation they deserve.
Although we can never guarantee specific results, our winning track record includes multiple six- and seven-figure settlements and verdicts.
When it comes to doing whatever it takes for our clients, we have has a strong reputation for our willingness to go to trial if that is what it takes to obtain a just compensation award. Our peers know this and routinely come to us to try cases other firms turn down. And insurance companies know we fight to win.
Attorneys Isaac Tyroler and Rachel Sperling Leonard have passionately represented the interests of all manner of injury victims and have gained valuable experience fighting vigorously against unreasonable insurance companies.
They know the tricks and tactics insurance adjusters use to convince victims to settle for less, and do not put up with them. When insurance companies know Isaac Tyroler are Rachel Sperling Leonard are on the case, their tune changes, and Tyroler Leonard Injury Law clients get compensated.
How Tyroler Leonard Injury Law Can Help
Hiring Our St. Paul Boat Accident Attorney Allows You to Focus on Healing
In addition to compensation for their damages, our clients need to heal. They need the time and space to address their losses and adjust their lifestyles without worrying about how to get compensation. That is what our St. Paul boat accident attorney takes care of.
A lot goes into claiming and receiving compensation. Some minor injury cases may be straightforward, but many accidents involve complex, tedious tasks and procedures that no person dealing with significant losses should have to face.
When you choose Tyroler Leonard Injury Law, our St. Paul boat accident lawyer will handle every aspect of your legal case from start to finish, including:
- Preparing and filing all paperwork and documents necessary for your claim
- Gathering and processing evidence
- Negotiating with insurance companies and defense attorneys
- Going to trial if necessary.
Tyroler Leonard Injury Law exists to make bad actors pay for their negligence, even if it was a mistake that anyone could make. Every day, we work hard to bring this accountability to our clients, so they can have the resources they need to deal with their injuries.
Compensation for Your Boat Accident Losses
Losses associated with boat accident injuries can be substantial. Victims of serious accidents face painful obstacles in the journey to rebuild their lives. Fortunately, our boat accident attorney can help you recover the necessary funds to move forward.
You can seek to recover your out-of-pocket medical expenses, which are often those costs not already covered by an insurance plan. These expenses include specialized care and treatments that many injury victims need after serious injuries, such as expensive rehabilitation, long-term care, and prescription medicine.
Few people can afford to take time off work, much less spend months recuperating from an injury they did not cause. Fortunately, a negligent boat driver can be held responsible for their victim’s lost wages.
If an injury leads to long-term time off work and missed financial opportunities, the negligent boat driver might also be responsible for the predicted lost income.
Pain and Suffering
Pain and suffering is a general term that applies to the physical and emotional pain an injury victim or their loved one feels. More serious injuries typically involve higher compensation. Factors that have an impact on the value of the calculation of the award for pain and suffering are:
- The extent of physical pain
- The duration of the pain
- Mental anguish.
A seasoned boat accident attorney will be able to demonstrate the full extent of your pain and suffering and collect the appropriate damages despite attempts by an insurance company to diminish the value of your pain.
Loss of Enjoyment of Life
Boat accident injuries can cause a victim to lose their ability to enjoy life. What is the economic value of the ability to enjoy life? It depends on the circumstances of each case.
Proving this form of loss will require your boat accident lawyer to demonstrate that your day-to-day enjoyment has diminished significantly, which they can accomplish through psychological evaluations, statements from loved ones and colleagues, and journal entries.
Your boat accident attorney can also accomplish this with pre-crash videos and photos showing how much your interaction with the world has changed. Comparing your calendar of activities before and after the injury may also be powerful evidence of how your life has been turned upside down.
Common Boating Accident Situations in St. Paul
Everyone knows there are thousands of lakes in Minnesota. If you live in St. Paul, you have direct, quick access to dozens of gorgeous bodies of water offering hours of warm-day fun. It is a shame that some boaters engage in dangerous behavior that puts others at risk and causes injuries.
Boating accidents are not rare and are often caused by a slip-up or mistake that should not have happened in the first place. This is known as negligence, and it is dangerous. In general, there are two basic types of accidents involving boats.
When only one boat is involved, an accident might occur in several different ways. Oftentimes, boats hit objects floating in the water or may collide with structures, such as a bridge or a dock. They can also run aground or accelerate suddenly.
When these types of accident occur, the forces typically generated in these mishaps routinely eject passengers into the water, onto land, or into structures.
Some single-boat accidents involve sinking, capsizing, or a passenger going under with a damaged boat. Other accidents involve:
- Fires and explosions
- Propeller mishaps
- Falls within the boat
- Waterskiing, tubing, etc.
Whatever the type of accident, we firmly believe that negligent individuals should compensate every injury victim for the pain and suffering they have caused.
Accidents Between Two or More Boats
Most boat accidents in Minnesota occur between two or more watercraft. In some instances, only one of the boats is moving and hits another that was anchored or tied up. The potential for serious injury is typically high when one of the boats involved in a collision is much larger and more durable than the other.
As with some single-boat accidents, many accidents between two or more boats eject passengers, while at the same time, some passengers may remain on board during the crash. The latter face injury by trauma and fire.
Typical Causes of Boat Accidents
Negligence is behind many of the boat crash cases we take. It can present in many different forms and often creates a risk of danger that reasonable boaters would recognize and prevent. This is why negligent individuals on the water are held liable for their actions. The following are some common forms of negligence on the water.
Operating a boat at high speeds can be very dangerous — especially if you break the speed limit. Reaction time slows considerably, but the potential for serious injury increases exponentially. Death is also an unfortunate outcome, as was the case with a 2020 accident on Otter Tail Lake, which allegedly involved the operation of a boat while intoxicated.
Boating While Intoxicated (BWI)
Sadly, one of the main causes of boating accidents is boating while intoxicated (BWI). Negligent boaters are known to operate their watercraft under the influence of alcohol or recreational or prescription drugs, which opens them up to criminal and civil liability. A conviction of BWI is essentially direct proof of negligence.
Minnesota requires minors to complete a safety course and obtain a water operator’s permit. However, just because a person has a permit, it may not mean they have experience with certain types of watercraft under varying situations.
Also, adulthood in no way ensures that a driver has experience with boats. Ideally, adults wouldn’t choose to operate a watercraft if they have little or no experience. If they do, then the chances for an accident increase.
Whether an adult has the appropriate experience, they must learn navigation rules when operating a watercraft. Right-of-way rules, and rules governing speed, turning, and signaling are just as important on the water as on the road.
It takes only a split second of distraction for an accident to occur. Unlike motor vehicles on roadways, there is no specific law against distracted boating. That does not mean it is okay, however. In fact, it is just as negligent as if committed while driving a car.
As on the road, technology can play a significant role in distracting boaters. Sending texts, taking photos, or fiddling with the boat’s dashboard components can take your mind off the helm long enough for an accident to occur.
Failure to Provide Safety Equipment
Minnesota law explicitly mandates that all aboard watercraft or waterfowl boats must have ready access to life vests that are U.S. Coast Guard approved. If boats are 16 feet or longer, they are also required to have a throwable flotation device that is also U.S. Coast Guard approved. The same holds true in Wisconsin.
Other important required equipment includes:
- Statute-specific lighting
- Statute-specific ventilation equipment
- Fire extinguishers.
Providing this equipment is not enough. Each safety implement must function properly. Fire extinguishers must be charged and unexpired; lighting must be fully functional; and life vests must be in good working condition.
Holding Negligent Actors Liable
Both insurance adjusters and boat accident attorneys handling injury cases work diligently to assign fault for an accident. Insurance adjusters can use anything you say to prove your negligence. Speaking to an attorney before an adjuster is a good way to protect your interests.
Evidence of Negligence
A boat accident injury claim is only as strong as the evidence that supports it. You’re your contracting our firm, our boat accident lawyer will start gathering evidence. Of particular value to boat accident attorneys are:
- Police and medical reports
- Witness testimony
- Surveillance and cellphone video
- Photos of the accident and injuries
- Photos of faulty equipment.
Once the evidence is assembled, the negligent parties will begin to emerge and may include the following:
- Boat operator
- Boat owner
- Boat manufacturer
- Boat rental company
- Boat repair shop.
It is important to note that evidence should be collected soon after an accident. As time passes, boat accident attorneys may find some evidence difficult to acquire.
Boating accident injuries vary by type of accident. For example, blunt-force-trauma accidents are more likely to occur when a boat crashes into a structure, swimmer, or another boat. Under these circumstances, speed plays a significant role in the severity of the injuries. In particularly serious crash accidents, the following injuries are not uncommon:
- Head injuries, including traumatic brain injuries
- Spinal cord and column injuries
- Broken bones
- Organ damage.
The most significant loss is the death of a loved one. In Minnesota, there is at least one boating accident fatality each month. Most deaths in 2021 occurred due to drowning and were single-boat accidents. In many cases, the victim fell overboard or the boat capsized.
What to Do After a Boating Accident
Shock and pain are frequently the first feelings passengers experience after a boating accident. The seconds and minutes following a crash or other mishap are important for passengers’ safety and the legal proceedings likely to follow.
When an accident happens involving an injury, call the Coast Guard or state authorities if you can, and get to safety. Then immediately seek medical treatment from first responders or a nearby hospital. Even when the injury seems minor, don’t let anyone try to convince you to shake it off and continue with your day.
Both the medical and accident report will contain vital information about your case and need to be obtained as soon as possible after an accident. Evidence boat accident attorneys usually find in these documents includes:
- The name of the negligent boater
- Time, date, and location of the crash
- Information about the negligent boater’s watercraft
- Witness statements
- Documentation of your injuries
- A narrative of the events.
After the accident, your damages will likely start piling up. Lost work, medical and travel expenses, and an unwanted rearranging of your life may result. You may get a clearer picture of what you and your loved ones are facing. At this moment, you need a boat accident lawyer you can trust to pursue the funds that will help remedy some of the damage.
”So so grateful for Isaac Tyroler’s services and our win.
He was committed to my case throughout the 6 years from our first meeting until settlement. Isaac kept me informed during the never-ending delays with insurance and had my best interest at all times. He is very knowledgeable and amazing at his job. He definitely will get my referrals.” – Jodie Sederstrom (Google Review)
Frequently Asked Questions
Boat accidents and personal injury claims are far from simple issues. Please call our St. Paul boat accident lawyer for answers if you have any questions. In the meantime, the following list of questions and answers might be of help.
What are some of the boat insurance requirements?
Boaters in Minnesota do not have to carry boater’s insurance while out on the water. Therefore, you can expect that more than a few of the over 800,000 registered boats in the state are in the water without coverage. Although boating insurance is not required, it is a good idea to have a basic policy that will provide coverage in the event of an accident.
Will insurance cover my boating accident injuries?
The at-fault boater’s insurance policy will cover some or all of your injuries, assuming they have insurance. The victim’s personal insurance will likely pay for immediate medical treatment. Part of the settlement or verdict down the line will likely include reimbursement for this coverage.
What if the boater who injured me does not have insurance?
If a boater injures you and does not have insurance, the policy covering the boat you were on becomes the compensation source. If no one has insurance, you will have to sue the negligent driver of the boat.
Do I have a viable boating accident injury case?
Depending on the facts and circumstances of your accident, you may have a viable boating accident case. The key factor determining the viability of your case is fault. If your attorney can prove the other boater’s negligence, you likely have a case worth pursuing.
How much do boat accident attorneys charge for a boat accident case?
At Tyroler Leonard Injury Law, we do not charge upfront for our services. The fees charged by our boat accident lawyer will be taken from the final settlement or verdict awarded in your case. Additionally, we do not charge for an initial consultation.
Is there a time limit for filing a boat accident lawsuit?
Minnesota’s time limit for filing an injury claim from a boat accident is six years. In Wisconsin, it is three. After the time limit has elapsed, you likely have lost your ability to pursue compensation. This makes it important to take legal action as soon as possible after you are in an accident.
If your accident happened outside this time frame, your claim might still be viable if an exception applies. Our St. Paul boat accident lawyer can review your case to determine whether it is still viable.
What if a family member is responsible for the accident?
It depends on the terms of your insurance policy. Generally speaking, most Minnesota boat insurance policies have exclusionary clauses if one family member injures another.
Although state lawmakers, in response to pressure from activists and former boat-accident injury victims, attempted to invalidate these types of insurance policies, their efforts did not result in a viable law.
Feel free to call our offices for clarification of any other topic. Our St. Paul boat accident lawyer will be glad to field your questions and concerns so you have the clarity and confidence to face this process.
Trust Tyroler Leonard Injury Law with Your Boat Injury Claim
Our Team Is Ready to Fight to Get You Just Compensation
It’s not often easy getting the compensation you deserve after an accident. Although you may get a fast offer from an insurance company, you should know that injury victims typically have to fight to get a payout worthy of their damages.
We are very familiar with injury victims’ desperate need for financial resources after an accident. We do everything within our power to get our clients the payouts that will bring them relief.
Sometimes, the fight is long; at other times, the process is much shorter. No matter the duration of your claim, you can feel confident that our boat accident lawyer will work diligently for a swift resolution in your favor.