"The team has so many contacts with foreign insurers and so many people with foreign languages that it is miles ahead of others."

Chambers and Partners (2014)

Accidents and Illness at Sea

We are experts in handling cruise illness and accidents claims.

We have acted for clients in several ground breaking claims arising from accidents or illness suffered on board cruise liners, pleasure craft and other vessels around the world.

Many of our lawyers have won record awards of damages for clients in group actions and individual accidents and illness claims and are recognised as leaders in the field.

If you or someone you know has been affected by illness or injury during a stay on board a cruise ship, we may be able to help claim compensation. Fill in our online claims form for free legal advice.

We are currently acting for the victims and families of those who have suffered from illness or who have been injured or killed on board a number of ships including:-

Successful cases

In a successful claim, damages can be substantial. We have acted for hundreds of clients in many successful cases over the years recovering millions of pounds in compensation. Here are just a few examples:

Recovered in excess of £250,000 in compensation for passengers on the SS Ausonia after a number of passengers were taken ill with Salmonella food poisoning.

  • Topaz

Over £190,000 recovered for 39 passengers who travelled on the Topaz Cruise Ship some of who were diagnosed with salmonella food poisoning.

  • Odysseus

Compensation recovered for 48 passengers who travelled on the Odysseus and contracted gastric illness.

We have also successfully won compensation for many clients suffering illnesses including Salmonella, Guardia, E-Coli, Shigella, following cruises on several different cruise ships on internal waterways including the River Nile in Egypt.

Athens Convention relating to the Carriage of Passengers and their Luggage by Sea 1974

The provisions of the Athens Convention relating to the Carriage of Passengers and their Luggage by Sea 1974 (The Athens Convention) govern most claims arising out of accidents at sea. In many cases, compensation can be recovered without having to prove fault. This includes if the ship has a defect or it was involved in a collision or there was a fire on board.

Time Periods

You should be aware that when bringing an action in relation to an illness or accident at sea that the Limitation period in which you have to bring the claim is normally 2 years from the date of disembarkation from the ship. If your cruise does not cross international waters other Limitation periods will apply.

It may be possible, depending upon the circumstances of the accident, to bring a claim against the cruise organiser or the operator in England. Under the Athens Convention, you have a choice of where to bring your claim which will include the country where the cruise company is based, where you departed from and where you arrived, where you permanently live (if the cruise company also has a place of business there) or where your contract with the cruise company was made.

The Package Travel, Package Tours and Package Holidays Regulations 1992 may apply to your claim if your cruise or carriage by sea or inland waterway was included in your package. The regulations make a tour operator or other holiday provider or organiser responsible for all services which are provided as part of a package holiday including this carriage.

The Package Travel Regulations may allow you to bring your claim against your tour operator in England. Where there is the option to bring a claim in England, it is often advisable to do so because levels of damages awarded are often higher than in other jurisdictions and legal costs are normally paid if you win your claim.

We have a highly experienced team working to recover damages for our clients and we are well known for our ability to ensure our clients recover full and fair compensation for their losses, whether they have suffered from minor injuries or illness or they have been the victim of serious brain, spinal and other injuries or death. More than anything, we aim to keep things clear, simple and as straightforward as possible for our clients, so there's no need for you to worry at any point about the legal complexities or technicalities of your case. You will be kept regularly updated about the progress of your claim and throughout receive expert advice and assistance.

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0800 056 0066

"We were very happy with the outcome of our case, especially as we were initially offered nothing from the Tour Operator. Irwin Mitchell were very professional throughout and we are very happy with the outcome."

Chris and Michael, Worksop