Getting injured out of state or in another country can be frightening and highly stressful. You may be away from your familiar surroundings and receive assistance from medical providers that do not speak your language. Moreover, when injured while traveling, you may have several pressing questions, including:
- Who will pay for my medical bills and other damages?
- How can I protect my legal rights if I am injured away from home?
- Where can I find the best possible legal representation?
Morgan & Morgan is here for you if you ask yourself, “What to do if I’m injured while traveling?” Our motivated personal injury attorneys want to help you receive the compensation you deserve if you suffer an injury in an avoidable accident while away from home. Contact us today to discover your legal options in a free case evaluation.
Common Accidents When Traveling
Vacation time should be relaxing and enjoyable. However, countless individuals have to cut their travels short every year due to getting hurt. Some of the most common accidents and injuries when away from home include:
Accidents may be more likely to happen on vacation or a business trip when drivers may be distracted by the landscape or struggle with unfamiliar roads. Injuries in car accidents can include:
- Traumatic brain injury (TBI)
- Internal injuries
- Spinal cord damage
Experiencing an injury miles away from home and facing out-of-state or foreign hospitals can feel overwhelming. However, when you get injured in a car accident while on vacation, seeking prompt medical help is critical for your health and your legal rights. Ask for a copy of your medical records and keep hold of all receipts for out-of-pocket expenses.
A car accident attorney from Morgan & Morgan could help you file a lawsuit against the responsible party and claim compensation.
Aviation and Airport Accidents
The aviation accident rate in 2020, according to The International Air Transport Association (IATA), was 1.71 accidents per million flights. However, while plane accidents are extremely rare, they can cause permanently disabling injuries and fatalities. Most aviation and airport accidents and injuries happen on the ground rather than in the air and can include:
- Slips and falls in terminals, on ramps, or on planes
- Hot drinks or food spills on planes
- Objects falling from overhead lockers
- Airport shuttle or rail accidents
- Car accidents outside the terminals or in parking lots
- Accidents due to defective escalators or elevators
- Injuries due to turbulence, emergency landings, and crashes
Injuries in airport and plane incidents can range from minor to significant and catastrophic. When your accident arises due to the negligence or recklessness of a manufacturer, airline, or airport operator, you could sue and recover compensation. However, filing a claim without excellent legal representation can be tricky as you may be up against a powerful airline or a public authority.
If you are wondering what you should do if injured while traveling by plane, Morgan & Morgan could help. Our dedicated and experienced personal injury lawyers can fight vigorously for the best possible outcome of your case.
Cruise Ship Accidents
Injuries on a cruise can occur in many ways, including:
- Food poisoning
- Infections with dangerous bacteria and viruses
- Falls down stairs or on slippery decks
- Being struck by objects in rough seas
- Accidents when on a land tour
If your injury occurred due to the fault of the cruise ship operator, such as unsanitary or hazardous conditions on board, you could file a personal injury lawsuit. However, since cruise ships may be subject to maritime law, seeking advice from a seasoned personal injury lawyer can be critical for the success of your claim.
Hotel or Resort Accidents
Accidents and injuries can happen in the best hotels. However, if you suffered an injury in a resort or hotel due to the carelessness of management, you could be entitled to compensation. Common hotel and report accidents and injuries include:
- Slipping and falling due to slippery floors or lack of lighting
- Injuries from pests such as bed bugs or ticks
- Pool accidents
- Jet Ski and other resort rental equipment accidents
If you are injured while staying at a hotel, report the accident to the manager immediately and file an accident report. Take pictures and videos of the accident scene and your injuries, as you may have a compensation claim and have to rely on the evidence later.
When in an unfamiliar city or country, we may not be familiar with the language, local laws, and unsafe areas to avoid. As a consequence, we could be more at risk of becoming victims of crimes such as:
- Theft and violent robberies
- Sexual assaults
You could have legal recourse if you are injured on business, public, or private property while traveling. Property owners and other responsible parties must ensure that their premises are reasonably safe. If they fail to do so, and you or a loved one suffers harm, you could be entitled to damages.
Your Next Best Steps After Getting Injured Away From Home
It can be tricky to know what to do when you are injured away from your familiar surroundings and family and friends. However, just like when an accident happens at home, you should consider your health and legal rights first. Your next best steps can include the following:
Call 911 or the Local Emergency Number
If you are significantly hurt while traveling in the United States, call 911 as soon as possible for police and medical help. Call the local equivalent emergency number to receive assistance when abroad. In most cases, a police officer will make a report of your accident, which can be a critical document if you want to file a claim against the responsible party and recover compensation.
Gather Evidence of the Accident and Injuries
In the heat of the moment, such as after a car accident, victims may be in shock, not knowing what to do. However, gathering evidence can be vital for getting justice later on. Ask eyewitnesses for their contact information. Take pictures of the accident scene and your injuries. Also, ensure you collect all receipts for medical treatment costs and other out-of-pocket expenses to receive reimbursement later.
Get Medical Treatment
Getting medical assistance as soon as possible can be crucial if you are injured while traveling. Receiving medical help will make you feel better and document your injuries, which can make it easier to file a legal claim for damages later.
Seek Professional Legal Help
Whether you are injured out of state or abroad, one of your best first steps can be seeking legal advice from a trusted attorney. A Morgan & Morgan personal injury lawyer could help you determine your options, navigate the legal process, and help you get the compensation you need to get your life back on track.
What to Do If You Are Injured While Traveling for Work
Accidents can occur when traveling to different work sites or on business trips. If you are injured, your best course of action is:
- Report your injury to your employer or supervisor immediately
- Seek medical help promptly after the accident, even if you are out of state or abroad
- File a workers’ compensation claim
- Contact a personal injury attorney, as you may be able to file a lawsuit against the responsible party in your accident
You May Be Eligible for Workers’ Compensation Benefits
If you are injured while on a work trip, you could qualify for workers’ compensation payments, provided you are a regular employee, and your employer carries workers’ comp insurance.
It is important to note that independent contractors generally do not qualify for workers’ compensation. However, in some cases, employers misclassify employees as independent contractors to avoid paying taxes and other payroll expenses. If you get hurt and believe your employer misclassified you, contact a personal injury attorney as soon as possible, as you could have legal recourse and recover compensation.
Benefits You Could Receive with Workers’ Compensation
If your injury happened during a work trip, depending on your state’s workers’ comp program, you could be entitled to various benefits, including:
Depending on the severity of your injuries, you could be entitled to various income replacement benefits for your work-related travel injury, including:
- Temporary disability benefits
- Long-term disability payments
- Supplemental income
Workers’ compensation should pay for all medical expenses for an occupational injury, such as hospital stays, medications, medical devices, and more.
When a worker passes away on a business trip or other work-related travel, the surviving family members could be entitled to death benefits. While these payments vary from state to state, you could qualify for burial expenses and regular cash payments of up to two-thirds of your loved one’s weekly wage.
You Could File a Personal Injury Lawsuit
If you receive workers’ comp, you usually cannot file a lawsuit against your employer. However, you could sue if your employer is not covered by workers’ comp insurance or a third party caused your accident. Third parties can include:
- An at-fault driver if your accident happened in a car crash
- A negligent contractor at a job site
- An equipment manufacturer if your injury occurred due to faulty equipment
If you are injured during a work trip and unsure what to do, Morgan & Morgan has your back. Our attorneys are here to help you get what you deserve, whether with a workers’ compensation claim or a personal injury lawsuit.