SailNet Community banner

1 - 17 of 17 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,479 Posts
He didn't take long to lock the thread, did he?

Damn it guys, change the legal system so that the loser pays all of the costs.

You must. This is crazy.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2 Posts
Wow! That's what you get for letting lawyers rule the world. This is scandalous! What happens if there are serious injuries or death which could have been avoided if the information had been published? Free speech? Only if you can afford it, apparently.
 

·
Siren 17
Joined
·
1,984 Posts
That idea of loser paying isn't really the best plan. Let's say a boat in the marina comes lose and bashes your boat. The boat owner doesn't have insurance, or money as far as you can tell, but the marina requires insurance to dock there.

Well you decide to make a claim against the marina but it's denied. So you sue the marina for the damages but they're insurance company sends in a pack of lawers that prove the contract you signed stated that the marina wasn't liable for damage to your craft and they had proof of insurance, two years old mind you, of the boat in question.

You lose the suit and by the way here's a bill for $250,000 for the marina and insurance company's legal fees. Pretty soon unless you knew you had a 100% chance of winning a lawsuit, you'd never even try. Companies all over would get pretty lax in they're due diligence. Why make boat owners prove anything, no ones going to sue as long as you write the leases right.

Shoots, insurance companies would look forward to going to court because with a little padding they're legal departments could become profit centers. In the end the victims of big companies or deep pocketed Aholes would suffer far more then they do now. We'd all pay far more then an extra buck for this and a little inconvenence when we want to do that.
 

·
AEOLUS II
Joined
·
2,938 Posts
That idea of loser paying isn't really the best plan. Let's say a boat in the marina comes lose and bashes your boat. The boat owner doesn't have insurance, or money as far as you can tell, but the marina requires insurance to dock there.

Well you decide to make a claim against the marina but it's denied. So you sue the marina for the damages but they're insurance company sends in a pack of lawers that prove the contract you signed stated that the marina wasn't liable for damage to your craft and they had proof of insurance, two years old mind you, of the boat in question.
In this case, recourse would have been available for damage to your vessel through your own insurance. Where was the marina negligent??

Well, it wasn't. So rightfully, in this case, the marina wins and the loser pays for the baseless lawsuit.

There could be a better example out there somewhere....

(I'm a proponent of tort reform)
 

·
Telstar 28
Joined
·
1,000 Posts
Of course, if the boat that came loose, did so because the finger pier they were tied to broke free...then you would probably have a good case against the marina. However, if the boat came loose due to the owner not having secured it properly, the marina is not at fault, since it isn't their responsibility to tie up the boats—that falls on the owner of the boat generally.

In this case, recourse would have been available for damage to your vessel through your own insurance. Where was the marina negligent??

Well, it wasn't. So rightfully, in this case, the marina wins and the loser pays for the baseless lawsuit.

There could be a better example out there somewhere....

(I'm a proponent of tort reform)
 

·
AEOLUS II
Joined
·
2,938 Posts
Of course, if the boat that came loose, did so because the finger pier they were tied to broke free...then you would probably have a good case against the marina. However, if the boat came loose due to the owner not having secured it properly, the marina is not at fault, since it isn't their responsibility to tie up the boats—that falls on the owner of the boat generally.
In either case, damages would still be paid by your own carrier, but you make a good point.

Even if the peir broke, that alone does not prove the marina negligent.

However, if it was in obvious disrepair and it was proved the marina knew about it, well, you'd have a case. Even still, your own insurance would subrogate against the marina. That's the better course to take.

Pretty soon unless you knew you had a 100% chance of winning a lawsuit, you'd never even try.
That's the idea!!
 

·
Siren 17
Joined
·
1,984 Posts
I'm also for tort reform but to continue the example above, you assume the injured party had full coverage on his insurance but plenty of sailors carry liability only. You also see where I noted the proof of insurance the marina had on file was two years old. This is what I'm talking about more then anything else.

As it now stands, legit companies have a reasonably awareness of the need to keep track of more then just the bottom line. For the simple reason that even if they aren't directly responsible they have a hand in everything going on around them and can be held liable. As well, you can counter sue for legal fees as well as sue for punitive damages over frivolous lawsuits, now.

There are plenty of examples of people with shaky cases. An even bigger problem would be if you have every reason to sue but lack compelling evidence that you can show in court. The is also a misconception about the number of lawsuits today. There are far fewer lawsuit per capita then even 50 years ago, fewer still then when America was just getting started.

You could make it easier to win counter suits or easier to go after repeat litigator without scaring off reasonable lawsuits. Making it automatic for the plantiff to pay the defendants legal fees will only encourage people and companies to spend even more in defense just so when they win, the plantiff get socked with high bill. It would be in the long term interest to many corporations to instill fear of retribution in the general public.

There is a book tittled "Unequal Protection" the gives an interesting perspective from past efforts of different corporations to manipilate the law with constant lawsuits to nible at the governments as well as consumers rights. It not unheard of for a big company to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars fighting a battle over a small judgement just to keep from being held liable in the future. Even when the evidence shows they're really liable.
 

·
Thanks Courtney.
Joined
·
3,954 Posts
That idea of loser paying isn't really the best plan. Let's say a boat in the marina comes lose and bashes your boat. The boat owner doesn't have insurance, or money as far as you can tell, but the marina requires insurance to dock there.

Well you decide to make a claim against the marina but it's denied. So you sue the marina for the damages but they're insurance company sends in a pack of lawers that prove the contract you signed stated that the marina wasn't liable for damage to your craft and they had proof of insurance, two years old mind you, of the boat in question.

You lose the suit and by the way here's a bill for $250,000 for the marina and insurance company's legal fees. Pretty soon unless you knew you had a 100% chance of winning a lawsuit, you'd never even try. Companies all over would get pretty lax in they're due diligence. Why make boat owners prove anything, no ones going to sue as long as you write the leases right.

Shoots, insurance companies would look forward to going to court because with a little padding they're legal departments could become profit centers. In the end the victims of big companies or deep pocketed Aholes would suffer far more then they do now. We'd all pay far more then an extra buck for this and a little inconvenence when we want to do that.
dan- Maybe not the best example, but a very good point non-the-less. While it would likely stop a lot of frivolous law suits, it would mean that all other suits would be won by those who were willing to pony up for the best/most attorney. One step forward, two steps back.
 

·
Siren 17
Joined
·
1,984 Posts
Ok lets set up a different senario. You only have liabilty insurance, you come down to the marina and you tink your dock lines have been messed with. You don't think to much of it, it been a bit since you've been down, maybe the water was high and the dock guys adjusted the lines.

You go out for a sail, when out, you find your winch is loose. You get back to the marina and take a peek at the winch bolts, only to find that the fiberglass around them is cracked. Taking a better look at your boat you see a big scrape by the stern that you didn't see till you walked out on the finger pier one space over.

Talking to one of the liveaboards your told the marina was moving boats earlier this month to work on the piers, but he never saw your wether your boat was moved. You go to the marina office but they deny moving your boat. You've got a weak case to go to court on, but it clearly points to the marina being at fault. You don't have a witness who saw them move your boat but the pier does have fresh bumpers.

Will the judge put two and two together or not. Do you not see where loser pays will cut back on lots of legitimat lawsuits. Do you not see how it will become far more common for aggresive companies to deny just about everything and go to court instead.
 

·
Senior Member
Joined
·
407 Posts
I think we as sailors have the right to look out for each other...

I think what Tartan has done is awful and should be posted on the front page of EVERY SAILING SITE on the web...I also think everyone should boycott any company that advertises or allows TARTAN to advertise..

They can do nothing about that but watch their money go bye-bye and their customers go elsewhere....Then when they are broke and nobody will deal with them(SUBCONTRACTORS) then they will understand the importance of "Free Speach"...

Someone makes their sails and someone builds their hardware..I say let those company's hear the complaints and tell them of TARTAN'S Fear mongering and maybe they will stop doing business with Tartan and wake them up as you cant build even crappy boats with no products to build them from...DONT BOYCOTT TARTAN BOYCOTT THEIR SUPPLIERS AND ADVERTISERS....
 

·
Siren 17
Joined
·
1,984 Posts
The damage you describe could have been cased by a wake.

It should never go to court.
Your making my point for me. How would a wake damage a winch used for the sails. How would a wake scratch the side of the boat opposite the dock. Where is the boat in the marina and how likely is it to expierence a large wake. You're bold statement that it should never go to court is exactly why the idea of loser pays will only incourage bad behavor.

The only way you could get damages the way your advocating is if you have three eyewitnesses, unrelated of course. photographic eviedence that the boat wasn't damaged before the incident. even then can the defendent make a case that your winch was loose and that caused the problem. Do you have proof that your winch wasn't lose to begin with.

It boils back to the judge and jury deciding which cases have merit and which don't. This after hearing all the facts. What your in favor of will reverse the current role. You'll have lawyers do defense on contigency. Win not on merit but on a technicality and they still get to sock with a fat bill.
It's easier to defend most cases. Pile on a few extra attornees and rack it up.
 

·
AEOLUS II
Joined
·
2,938 Posts
The only way you could get damages the way your advocating is if you have three eyewitnesses, unrelated of course. photographic eviedence that the boat wasn't damaged before the incident. even then can the defendent make a case that your winch was loose and that caused the problem. Do you have proof that your winch wasn't lose to begin with.
Each of these points would surely be brought up as preponderance of evidence during any civil trial, your way or mine.

You certainly have precedence, the status quo and a TON of trial lawyers backing you up!!

It boils back to the judge and jury deciding which cases have merit and which don't. This after hearing all the facts.
No, weather the case has merit is SUPPOSED to be determined BEFORE it gets to trial.
 

·
Telstar 28
Joined
·
1,000 Posts
Check the other thread, Tartan/C&C just went into receivership as I read it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
801 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
516 Posts
Discussion Starter #17
That idea of loser paying isn't really the best plan. Let's say a boat in the marina comes lose and bashes your boat. The boat owner doesn't have insurance, or money as far as you can tell, but the marina requires insurance to dock there.

Well you decide to make a claim against the marina but it's denied. So you sue the marina for the damages but they're insurance company sends in a pack of lawers that prove the contract you signed stated that the marina wasn't liable for damage to your craft and they had proof of insurance, two years old mind you, of the boat in question.

You lose the suit and by the way here's a bill for $250,000 for the marina and insurance company's legal fees. Pretty soon unless you knew you had a 100% chance of winning a lawsuit, you'd never even try. Companies all over would get pretty lax in they're due diligence. Why make boat owners prove anything, no ones going to sue as long as you write the leases right.

Shoots, insurance companies would look forward to going to court because with a little padding they're legal departments could become profit centers. In the end the victims of big companies or deep pocketed Aholes would suffer far more then they do now. We'd all pay far more then an extra buck for this and a little inconvenence when we want to do that.
You took this to insurance so will go off topic.........
Look at your paperwork and realize your paying for non-insured.......
MARK
 
1 - 17 of 17 Posts
Top