There is no denying the fact that cruise ship rape and sexual assault continue to be a problem at sea. Unfortunately, these two crimes are the most commonly reported crimes aboard cruise ships. And yet, even with the statistics available, we know that these traumatic events take place far more often than anyone would like. Often, and for a variety of reasons, cruise lines refuse to warn incoming passengers of the epidemic of cruise ship rapes occurring; and victims of these crimes hesitate to come forward or speak out about their experience, making the reality of the problem far greater than we currently know.
That said, cruises continue to be popular options for individuals from all walks of life looking for a fun and carefree way to spend their vacation. So what can you do to ensure that you do not fall victim to a life-changing crime at sea? Here is what we recommend:
Remain Aware of Your Surroundings
This may seem like the most obvious suggestion, however, it is always worth repeating. In many cases, passengers aboard cruises are excited to embark on their time away, and assume that everyone else has the same innocent intentions. While this may be true for the majority of the people you will meet at sea, it is important to remember that cruises are essentially floating cities. And, as a result, it is in your best interest to keep an eye out for yourself and your traveling companions.
If you are traveling with minors, we recommend sitting down with them beforehand to have a conversation regarding cruise safety. The shocking truth is that rapes and sexual assaults affect a high number of minors, so ensuring that they also understand the importance of vigilance is key. Supervision of minors is always the best way to prevent their accessibility to potential assailants – but if you want to allow your minor children to engage in shipboard activities away from you, make sure that you require your children to frequently check in with you (every two hours is a good rule of thumb).
Know How Much Time You Have to File a Claim
In many cases, the cruise line will limit the amount of time a passenger has to file a claim. For example, passengers generally have only one year from the date of the incident to file a claim against the cruise line and are required to provide the cruise line with notice of the particulars of their claim within six months! There are other laws that govern how long individuals have to file a claim against other individuals. Because of this, it is necessary to do your research ahead of time, so you are aware of the timeline with which you are working, before you depart.
Although it can feel pessimistic or even be a hassle to look into these matters before you go, it will be far more helpful to have this information ready, should anything go wrong during your cruise.
Contact LMAW, PA for Help
At Lipcon, Margulies, Alsina & Winkleman, P.A., we have years of experience helping individuals in the wake of their rape or sexual assault at sea. We understand the complex emotional and physical burdens you may be carrying, and we are here to help.
We will fight for your rights at every available opportunity, so that you can get the resolution you deserve. And while a legal settlement can never undo the harm that has been done to you, it can provide the closure you need to begin moving forward with your life. So if you believe that speaking with a cruise ship rape lawyer could make your life easier, do not hesitate to contact us.