Your Cruise Ship Contract; Beaching of the Costa Concordia

Costa Cruises has long itself as “Italy’s Finest” and marketed itself as providing its passengers the uniquely Italian experience of fine food, wine and service. But now, it as has entered the race to build the biggest cruise ships,by ordering four new 6,600 passenger floating gargantuans will be powered by liquefied natural gas, to be build by Meyer Werft and Fincantieri.

In total Carnival has on order nine new colossal new cruise ships that will begin launching between 2019 and 2022 with the first new ship going to Carnival’s AIDA cruise line. By 2018 Carnival expect to add an additional 10 ships. Costa is based in Genoa, Italy but has been owned and operated by Carnival since 2000.

This announcement means that Carnival is not just looking to build its name brand-but its sub brands as well-which should lure passengers who want bigger ships but do not want the typical “Carnival Experience” to consider taking a AIDA or Costa cruise instead. Costa currently has 14 ships in its fleet and focuses primarily on the European market with cruise throughout the Caribbean, Europe, South America and the Middle East.

Most American cruise ship passengers probably had never heard of the Costa Cruises–until its ship the Costa Concordia ran aground and capsized off the coast of Tuscany in 2012 when its Captain, Francesco Schettino wanted to “salute” the tiny island of Giglio by sailing close by at night killing 32 people.

As the ship began to sink the captain was one of the first crew to escape his sinking ship abandoning many passengers were still on board. Two years after the accident, the wreckage of the Costa Concordia was finally towed back to Costa’s home port of Genoa for scrapping. The total cost of the disaster is estimated to be over $2 billion which includes the loss of the ship and salvage operations. Captain Schettino was found guilty of manslaughter for causing the shipwreck and abandoning his passenger and sentenced to 16 years in prison. His case is currently on appeal.

Accidents on a Costa Cruise Ship: Your Cruise Ship Contract

Like most cruise lines, Costa has a very complex and somewhat surprising requirements for suing them for passenger injuries. A passenger ticket on a Costa Cruise is actually a legal contract that most people are probably unaware they are entering when they book their cruise. In fact, the contract is 14 pages long, and in it passengers give up a lot of their legal rights against Costa in the event they are injured- this occurs well before the cruise or any accident, this happens at the time the ticket is purchased.

While Costa maintains its primary offices in Port of Genoa and cruises passengers from around the world, people who may get hurt on a Costa cruise by slipping, tripping or falling or any other type of accident are required to file any claims against Costa in the Southern District Court in Broward County, Florida, located in Fort Lauderdale, just up the road from Carnival’s headquarters in Doral. Any personal injury claim must be filed within one year of the date of the incident.

Our office has over 50 years of combined experience successfully battling the major cruise lines in and out of court to obtain fair and reasonable compensation for our clients. Call us today for a free initial consultation about your potential cruise ship accident claim. Not all accidents or injuries sustained aboard a cruise are cases-but understanding the difference and being able to prove how and why it happened as well as the long term medical and financial consequences requires passionate representation. Call us 1-866-597-4529 or email us at: [email protected] and speak with an experienced cruise lawyer today by telephone, SKYPE or FACETIME.