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Old 22-04-2015, 20:21   #1
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Got rear-ended

Hi everybody!
I really did got rear- ended when nicely anchored in Sat Whistle Bay in the Grenadines. It happened early morning. The boat that hit mine was on anchor too, anchored right behind me. It was a charter boat and the two couples on board were pretending that nothing happen. After half an hour of waiting, I hoped in my dinghy and went to see them and asked them to come have a look of what they did it as the damage was substantial, the whole push pit wrecked, solar panel arch bend, bimini torn. Finally they did admit the guilt and told me that the skipper turn on the motor not realizing the transmission was engaged and not realizing the boat was steaming forward until it hit my boat. To make a long story short, I made the skipper to write a full account of what happened , took a picture of his passport, insurance, registration. The charterers were British, the boat from Dreamyachtcharters out of Martinique. No problem as this is the place where I keep my boat. Once I returned to Martinique I went to see my friend who's the welder and he estimated the repairs at 7000 euros plus the cost of bimini.Went to se the manager of the Company and he told me this is way to much and he can fixe it for less using his guys of which I know are slops as it comes to boat repairs and decided to deal with his insurance company which is based in France. After receiving two e-mails haven't heard from them again. What should I do? I'm self insured and have to deal with those matters on my own, should I hire a lawyer on the island where the accident happen? Any input will be highly appreciated .
Regards, Henryk
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Old 22-04-2015, 20:41   #2
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Re: Got rear-ended

Lawyer will cost money you may not recoup. Of course the charter co can have it done for less as they work for him. Maybe give them a chance with you managing the project?

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Old 22-04-2015, 22:09   #3
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Re: Got rear-ended

^^^ good advice...a bird in the hand...
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Old 22-04-2015, 22:43   #4
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Re: Got rear-ended

Here's another story of a crash by a Dream Yacht Charter boat:

Swell Voyage » Forgiveness is Freedom

Seems Dream Yacht could care less about their boats running into others.

Here's an excerpt from that site, describing what it was like to deal with them:

Quote:
Friends and strangers alike urged me to fight back. I could sue Mr Dimmit in California for my losses due to his recklessness. I could file an international lawsuit against the charter company manager, Jerome, who I watched sneakily wipe off the paint from collision point of the accident above the Swell’s waterline, and then tell the yard worker not to grind that area down (because he didn’t want to have to pay to redo the paint!?). When I ground the patch down myself, there was a large area of damaged fiberglass that would not have been repaired had I not happened to see him slyly arrive on his scooter with acetone and a rag in hand.

The whole ordeal was time-consuming, energy draining, and downright disheartening. I wrote some letters of appeal for support to Glenn and those higher up at Dream Yacht Charter. Glenn never responded at all, and the company only turned accusations and faults on me. I spent too much time feeling angry, hurt, confused as what was the best thing to do…I had always tried to do right by others…how could they care so little??
You might take her experience into consideration as you plan on how to respond.

As my lawyer always says, "Anyone can sue for any reason, but the guy who wins is almost always the guy with the money." If you aren't financially prepared to go toe to toe with a well-established international business...

Good luck.
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Old 23-04-2015, 01:46   #5
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Re: Got rear-ended

If the skipper of the offending vessel is British and had enough $$ to charter a boat I'd assume he's not completely judgment proof. Why not expolore to see if you can hire a British based law firm on contingency basis in GB? My understanding that in Britain it's "loser pays" so if what you described is accurate rendering of the event as it happened there should not be a problem with getting a judgment against the offending party. Getting it paid, now that's another matter altogether.
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Old 23-04-2015, 02:16   #6
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Re: Got rear-ended

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Originally Posted by Island Time O25 View Post
If the skipper of the offending vessel is British and had enough $$ to charter a boat I'd assume he's not completely judgment proof. Why not expolore to see if you can hire a British based law firm on contingency basis in GB? My understanding that in Britain it's "loser pays" so if what you described is accurate rendering of the event as it happened there should not be a problem with getting a judgment against the offending party. Getting it paid, now that's another matter altogether.
Don't fall into the trap of, 'I have right on my side'.
He's offering to fix it for you. Let him do it, but insist on being able to watch it done. Get out of it as easy as you can.

Unfortunately being uninsured means compromising.
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Old 23-04-2015, 02:27   #7
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Re: Got rear-ended

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Don't fall into the trap of, 'I have right on my side'.
He's offering to fix it for you. Let him do it, but insist on being able to watch it done. Get out of it as easy as you can.

Unfortunately being uninsured means compromising.
Now that's a trap to be fallen into. If a company that's doesn't give a flying f*&k to begin by not covering the damage in full with an offer to "rectify" the damages using their own apparently substandard contractors how well will this turn out to be? The loss in value of a not well repaired boat may be as much as the cost of the repair if done correctly. Not to mention the potential need to re-do the repairs at some point down the road.

The hard truth of the matter is that the OP is out of luck either way and there is no perfect solution. There is only partial mitigation of damages or so it seems.

Personally I would shop around to see if it can be fixed cheaper but still pursue a claim against the offending parties if that can be done on a contingency or low cost upfront basis. In my experience a delay in asserting your legal claim always works against the injured party.
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Old 23-04-2015, 20:09   #8
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Re: Got rear-ended

I was owed money from a trucking co for some work I had done. After waiting over a couple of months to be paid and getting the runaround I left a message that if I didn't get my money in the next 2 weeks I would cut in two the frame of the next truck I found that belonged to them. I got a check in the mail in a few days. I would have a heart to heart with the charter co manager, if he thinks ignoring you and you'll go away will save him money that is what he will do. You have to convince him that he gains nothing and will lose much if he follows that course. I really dislike people who avoid their responsibility, you just have to make sure he see doing the right thing is his best option.


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Old 26-04-2015, 01:25   #9
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Re: Got rear-ended

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Originally Posted by american View Post
Here's another story of a crash by a Dream Yacht Charter boat:

Swell Voyage » Forgiveness is Freedom

Seems Dream Yacht could care less about their boats running into others.

Here's an excerpt from that site, describing what it was like to deal with them:



You might take her experience into consideration as you plan on how to respond.

As my lawyer always says, "Anyone can sue for any reason, but the guy who wins is almost always the guy with the money." If you aren't financially prepared to go toe to toe with a well-established international business...

Good luck.

If I remember correctly, Liz was given the boat that she is on and is somehow "Sponsored". She has chronicled her adventures for a few years in the sailing magazine, Latitude 38.

Her manner of dealing with her situation is very different in comparison to how I would have handled it. When the boat is something that one has put a considerable amount of their own money into for the purchase and upkeep, no way I'm going to let it slide. The offending party is the one that needs to worry about his karma, not me.
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Old 26-04-2015, 02:10   #10
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Re: Got rear-ended

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If I remember correctly, Liz was given the boat that she is on and is somehow "Sponsored". She has chronicled her adventures for a few years in the sailing magazine, Latitude 38.

Her manner of dealing with her situation is very different in comparison to how I would have handled it. When the boat is something that one has put a considerable amount of their own money into for the purchase and upkeep, no way I'm going to let it slide. The offending party is the one that needs to worry about his karma, not me.
So, by your logic, if someone gives me a thing of great value - sentimental value, cash value, and life-style value - it's not worth as much as the same thing that you have, because you've purchased it and I have not?

If we were talking about a physical home - one sat on land - and it had been given to Liz, then run into by a truck... would you say the same thing?

In my view her decision on how to deal with her boat being damaged is not a reflection of the value of her boat (to her or anyone else). It's a valid response to a no-win situation. Companies regularly engage in "law-fare" against individuals. The term "law-fare" exists because it's a well known tactic for large, multinational corporations (such as Dream Yacht Charters) to use their money and global scope to defeat valid legal claims brought against them by individuals.

Please, explain to us how you would have handled her situation. Or how you would handle the situation outlined by OP in this thread. Curious to hear you extend your logic into a real-world proof.
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Old 26-04-2015, 03:17   #11
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Re: Got rear-ended

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Originally Posted by River Cruiser View Post
I was owed money from a trucking co for some work I had done. After waiting over a couple of months to be paid and getting the runaround I left a message that if I didn't get my money in the next 2 weeks I would cut in two the frame of the next truck I found that belonged to them. I got a check in the mail in a few days.
Extortion -- in this case, obtaining money by threatening to destroy the property of another -- is still a crime even if you are legitimately owed the money.

You are lucky that the trucking company didn't turn to the police.
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Old 26-04-2015, 03:19   #12
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Re: Got rear-ended

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Please, explain to us how you would have handled her situation. Or how you would handle the situation outlined by OP in this thread. Curious to hear you extend your logic into a real-world proof.
If Dream Charters has ads in US magazines that's enough to take them to court in a plaintiff friendly jurisdiction in the US. Once the judgment is procured by the plaintiff (and if the facts are as presented it will be procured) he is in much stronger position not only to get full reimbursment for the damages but also for court costs and legal fees. Most likely when faced with an already filed law suit they or most likely their insurance carrier will just cough up what's owed. And in some jurisdictions (here in MA for example) a good plaintiff's/consumer attorney may even get treble damages (especially if the liability part is a nonbrainer). Now that will be an eye opener for those a-holes at Dream Charters.

PS Many courts will not even uphold a boiler plate language in the contract which forces the customer into some far away jurisdiction to which they have no connection if the contract writing side has extensive business contacts in US (such as ads, offices, personnel, etc). One office in USVI or PR is enough to trigger US jurisdiction.
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Old 26-04-2015, 03:39   #13
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Re: Got rear-ended

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Extortion -- in this case, obtaining money by threatening to destroy the property of another -- is still a crime even if you are legitimately owed the money.

You are lucky that the trucking company didn't turn to the police.
that was my thought to when I read that. As a former cop, it would have been taken very seriously. Without any doubt.
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Old 26-04-2015, 09:29   #14
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Re: Got rear-ended

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Originally Posted by River Cruiser View Post
I was owed money from a trucking co for some work I had done. After waiting over a couple of months to be paid and getting the runaround I left a message that if I didn't get my money in the next 2 weeks I would cut in two the frame of the next truck I found that belonged to them................
Childish, stupid and bad advice. That could easily have caused you a lot of problems.

For the OP, since you are uninsured, you have nobody to back you up. The company has offered to do the repairs. That's your best option. Make sure they do it right.

Sometimes, insurance is worth it.
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Old 26-04-2015, 10:43   #15
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Got rear-ended

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Originally Posted by american View Post
So, by your logic, if someone gives me a thing of great value - sentimental value, cash value, and life-style value - it's not worth as much as the same thing that you have, because you've purchased it and I have not?

That isn't even close to what I said. What I said was, sometimes people who are given something don't appreciate the true value of what they have. Don't get me wrong, I envy what Liz has been able to do over the last few years.



If we were talking about a physical home - one sat on land - and it had been given to Liz, then run into by a truck... would you say the same thing?

Absolutely.



In my view her decision on how to deal with her boat being damaged is not a reflection of the value of her boat (to her or anyone else). It's a valid response to a no-win situation. Companies regularly engage in "law-fare" against individuals. The term "law-fare" exists because it's a well known tactic for large, multinational corporations (such as Dream Yacht Charters) to use their money and global scope to defeat valid legal claims brought against them by individuals.



Please, explain to us how you would have handled her situation. Or how you would handle the situation outlined by OP in this thread. Curious to hear you extend your logic into a real-world proof.

See Island Time O25's response above.

I've never chartered a bare boat before, but I've rented plenty of cars and I've always had the option to purchase liability insurance and I'm assuming that the bare boat charters offer the same, correct me if I'm mistaken. If the offending party had the opportunity and didn't avail himself of the protection provided, it's not Liz's fault, why should she pay the price. Some of us anticipate selling our boats sometime, proper repairs cost money, especially somewhere like Tahiti. Pity the next owner of her Cal 40 if they aren't done correctly. Even though she is being sponsored, she isn't flush with cash, she already had to put out a solicitation for money when she had a problem with her stern tube/cutlass bearing.

Again I'm in her corner, no hate towards her in any way.
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