Tampa Bay Swimming Accident Attorneys
Swimming pool accidents are very common. Public pools are full of hazards. They are often employed with younger people who do not take as much care as they should.
Unfortunately, drowning is one of the most common reasons why kids end up in the emergency room after going to a pool.
If you are here reading this right now, you or a loved one have likely serious injuries after visiting a swimming pool.
Our Tampa Bay swimming accident lawyers are here to help you get the representation that you need. We want to help you get justice if your injuries were caused by someone else’s carelessness or negligence.
These accidents are nothing to take lightly. We want to help you through every step of your case to get the results you deserve.
Call our office today to get set up with a free consultation.
Keep reading to learn about a former client of ours that we helped get full justice.
Tampa Bay Swimming Accident Client Story
Some of the details and names in this story have been changed in order to protect our client’s identity.
Jon and his wife Gina were at the pool one Saturday with their son Luca. It was a nice day that Luca was looking forward to all week.
They laid out their chair and unloaded their bags. Luca was already bouncing around the deck talking to some of his school friends that they planned to meet there.
“Luca, get back here for a second,” said Gina.
She got the sunscreen out and sprayed Luca despite his complaints.
“Alright, off you go. Stay where we can see you,” she warned him.
Gina sprayed herself and Jon, then proceeded to dive into a book and sip the cold lemonade she brought with her.
They were enjoying the sun and change of setting.
Gina and Jon had been so busy lately with work and Luca’s sports that they barely had time to sit still anymore.
“This is nice,” Jon said.
“It sure is” Gina said back with a smile.
About an hour went by. Gina would peak over her book every couple of pages to check on Luca.
He was with his friends playing pool games. They went down the slides a few times.
Gina was glad that he was having fun. He was getting too stressed for a kid. He was only 12 and he was so anxious about school and his soccer team. He was always worried about making mistakes on the field. He never wanted to let anyone down.
It was nice to see him just be a kid today. There was nothing to worry about but having fun.
She went back to her book to finish up the chapter she was on and then she was going to offer lunch to her family.
After a few minutes, she was startled out of her book to the lifeguard blowing their whistle. Then there were air horns being blown.
Gina shot up in a panic. She immediately began scanning the water for Luca. When she could not find him, she got to her feet and started walking over to the water.
Horrified, she still couldn’t see him. His group of friends were standing over by the edge of the pool looking scared.
“Where is Luca?” she asked them.
They were all fixated at the lifeguard under the water.
Her heart dropped. There were two blurry figures at the bottom of the pool.
Time froze as she tried to make sense of what was going on.
Was that Luca? She prayed it was not but all signs pointed to yes. She didn’t know if he was dead or drowning or what.
After what felt like forever, a lifeguard emerged with Luca in his arms.
“Luca! Oh my God!” Gina wailed.
Jon was right by her now. They fell to the edge of the pool as lifeguards swarmed around them, sliding in to help the first one who pulled Luca up.
“Is he okay? Luca, are you okay? Can you hear me?” Gina was frantic.
They pulled him out of the water on a board and the lifeguards began to work over him. Someone shouted for 911 to be called.
Gina watched in horror as they performed CPR on her son.
It was an absolute nightmare.
He was rushed on an ambulance after the paramedics took over.
It turned out that Luca and his friends had dropped one of their parents phone in the pool. Luca had offered to swim down and get it because his friend could not reach that far.
While he was down there, his arm got stuck in the drain at the bottom of the pool.
When the lifeguard noticed it, Luca had been down there long enough to lose consciousness.
During the rescue, Luca’s shoulder was dislocated.
Thankfully Luca survived this horrific incident, which Gina and Jon were beyond grateful for. But they were furious that the pool’s suction would be strong enough to trap a 12 year old boy who was a pretty strong swimmer.
They decided to bring a claim against the pool for negligence.
When they looked online to find a lawyer, their searching led them to us. We got them set up with a free consultation right away.
During which, they asked us three big questions:
- How does this claim work?
- What will the compensation award be?
- What do we owe you to get started?
If you have similar questions about your own case, please keep reading to learn more.
How does this claim work?
Jon and Gina had never experienced anything like this before. They didn’t know what to expect.
When they asked us how these types of claims work, we explained to them the basics of the way they usually precede.
In a case like this, we would determine the value of their claim based on their damages. From there, we would negotiate with the insurance company to get them to come to us with a fair settlement award.
If they could not offer us what we believed to be full and fair, we would proceed to take them all the way to trial if need be.
What will the compensation award be?
This was an incredibly distressing episode for the entire family. They were worried Luca would never be the same again. They wanted to get him into counseling to deal with the trauma of drowning as soon as possible.
When they asked us what the compensation award would be, we explained to them that we could not definitively say what the award would be until we had a full understanding of the case.
It would require some investigation on our part to make sure we understood all of the damages that they had to go through.
We needed to know what their financial losses were. What more they would have to spend related to this incident. We also needed to know how much this had affected Luca’s life as well as the family’s life in general.
Once we got all of that information, we could determine the value of the case.
What do we owe you to get started?
Jon and Gina were ready to make out a check to us when they asked us what our retainer fee was. They had heard that lawyers were really expensive so they moved some money around before our first consultation so they could hopefully be able to retain our services.
We were glad to tell them that our Tampa Bay swimming accident lawyers worked on a contingency fee basis. That means that we do not get paid unless we win the case.
We never require a retainer fee. You will never have to pay a penny out of pocket to get our service.
Our attorney fees are covered by a small portion of the compensation award.
They seemed incredibly relieved to hear this.
We were glad to have met Jon and Gina that day. They were dedicated parents who wanted nothing but justice for their poor boy who was a victim of negligence.
Had the swimming pool owner addressed the safety issue of the drain, Luca could have avoided this whole mess.
After we did our investigation and negotiation with the insurance company, we were able to give the family justice in the fullest possible amount.
Keep reading until the end to learn about some of the biggest mistakes you should avoid making after you or a loved one has been injured.
Swimming Pool Accident Claim Mistakes
You are likely lost after having been involved in a swimming pool accident that left you seriously hurt. When you are pursuing compensation, you need to know what not to do in order to have the best possible chance for full justice. Avoid making the following mistakes.
Waiting to Get Medical Care
Swimming pool accidents, especially ones where someone is drowning, can be life threatening. Without immediate medical intervention, it can be devastating.
Whether you were hurt at the swimming pool or it was your child, make sure that medical care is provided as soon as possible.
If it was a drowning of your child, you are likely going to have lifeguards with some training tending to the victim but make sure emergency medical professionals are called to the scene right away.
If this was an accident where you slipped and fell on a slide for instance, then it is going to be important that you get your injuries tended to right away.
Getting immediate medical attention will not only ensure that your injuries do not worsen, but it will also make sure that the insurance company doesn’t have any reason to reduce your claim value.
Insurance companies will be looking for a reason to reduce your claim value. If they see that you did not get medical attention right away after your accident at the pool, they might try to say you lied about how badly hurt you are.
That could lead them to reducing your claim value. You do not want that. Get to the doctor as soon as you can.
Ignoring Advice from the Doctor
Let’s say you suffered a broken bone at the swimming pool. The owner of the property did not keep up with the structure of the slide at the pool and one of the rungs broke, leading to you falling and breaking your leg.
If you went to the doctor after your accident and were given specific instructions from them, you need to make sure you follow that advice as best as you can.
If you do not, your recovery will likely take longer.
If they tell you to go to physical therapy, you should make every effort to get to all appointments.
If they tell you to avoid certain things or activities, you need to listen to their guidance. It is important to your recover that you do so.
Also, if you don’t listen to your doctor, the insurance company will use this as an opportunity to reduce your claim value because to them it looks like you are not as hurt as you say you are.
Providing a Statement about the Accident
Whether it was you who got hurt at the pool, or your child, you are likely going to be hearing from the insurance company fairly quickly after the accident to see if you can give them a recorded statement.
We strongly advise against talking to them. They are going to make you think that they just want to help you resolve your case sooner. That does not mean that they have any interest in resolving it fairly.
When they call, you can tell them no and hang up the phone.
Let’s say your child was pulled from the pool after nearly drowning because there weren’t any indicators of how shallow the pool was so he hit his head. That would be the pool owner’s fault for not putting in safety measures in place.
If you get on the phone with the insurance company, they might make it seem like it was your fault for not preventing the accident. They have special training to get people to say things that will ruin their case. If they got you to even remotely side with them about this being partially your fault, you can bet they will use that against you.
Do not talk to them. Let your lawyer handle communications with the insurance company.
Delaying Hiring a Lawyer
Time is of the essence. You do not have unlimited time to file your claim. Your evidence does not wait around forever to get collected. You need to act quickly.
Going back to the example of someone who fell off of the broken rung of the ladder for the slide; if they waited a few months to try to file their claim, that ladder will probably have been fixed which means that you cannot go back to the scene to collect evidence of the condition it was in when they fell.
The sooner you act, the more your lawyer can do for you in terms of evidence collection and getting statements from witnesses.
Waiting to talk to a lawyer also means that you have more opportunity to make mistakes that could ruin your claim.
If you don’t want to ruin your case, please call a one of our swimming pool accident lawyers today for a free consultation.
Picking the Wrong Lawyer
In this one and only opportunity you have to file your claim, you want to make sure you are doing everything you can to get the best possible result.
Part of having a successful claim is having the right lawyer by your side. They will determine the outcome of your case. You need to be able to fully trust that they are going to be able to give you the results that you deserve.
Some indicators that you have the wrong lawyer working on your case are if they never pick up the phone to answer your calls. Instead, they have someone else fielding your questions and concerns but you never hear directly from the lawyer.
They might also not have much experience handling swimming pool accidents. You don’t want to rely on someone who only handles personal injury cases once in a while. You want someone who regularly deals with these cases successfully. It should be a huge part of what they do as lawyers.
Some people have lawyers represent them who usually practice in family law or estate planning but have decided to take on a personal injury case because they know the victim and have done it on occasion.
That is not the lawyer for you.
You want an experienced trial lawyer helping you get the justice you deserve.
Call Our Tampa Bay Swimming Accident Lawyers
If you or your loved one has been seriously hurt in a swimming pool accident, please get in touch with our office right away to set up your free first consultation.