The list of possible liable parties can vary, depending on the cause of an aviation accident. For example, manufacturers or maintenance suppliers may be liable if the accident is caused by a mechanical malfunction. If the accident was caused by an operator’s reckless behavior or poor judgment, he or she could be held liable. Also, under the Federal Tort Claims Act, the United States government has been sued for the negligence of an air traffic controller that resulted in an aviation tragedy. Identifying who is legally liable in an aviation case is dependent on the unique facts of each accident.
The General Aviation Revitalization Act (GARA) protects the manufacture of a non-commercial aircraft from liability lawsuits for defects on an aircraft that is 18 years old or more. What this means is that once an aircraft and its original component reach the age of 18 years, the manufacturer can not be held responsible for an accident—or any injuries sustained by the passengers if the aircraft crashed. If a problem occurs after the 18 years, it is most likely a negligent maintenance type of case.
All aviation accidents are to be reported to the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB). You can reach the NTSB Communications Center by calling (202) 314-6100. The NTSB will be able to provide you with some information, and can direct you to the right people to answer the questions they can’t. Experienced aviation attorneys can help you gather critical information such as from aircraft insurance companies and other entities in a timely fashion.
Because of the national and international nature of air transportation, aviation accident suits may be filed in a jurisdiction other than where the accident occurred. Commercial accidents often involve federal courts and multi-state issues that require attorneys in other states to coordinate with the lawyers in the state where the accident occurred.
This is beneficial because you can receive expert aviation advice from Law Offices of Allen & Abaray, P.A., coupled with a local attorney’s familiarity with their jurisdictions’ courts and procedures.
In addition to the NTSB, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) may also investigate an aviation accident. An aviation accident investigation can also involve foreign or local authorities or the departments of Justice and Defense. Other agencies may also be involved in providing services to victims and their families including: the Department of Health and Human Services, American Red Cross, and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).
For over twenty years, the law firm of Allen & Abaray, P.A. has provided exceptional statewide representation for injury victims, and the families of those who are injured or killed by the conduct of others. While our personal injury lawyers are based in Lakeland, we represent clients throughout the State of Florida.
Allen & Abaray, P.A. offers a free consultation in all personal injury cases. If you have been injured or lost a loved one in any type of accident, call (863) 669-9999 or toll-free at (877) 669-6899 today to speak with a Lakeland airplane crash attorney about your case. We won’t charge an attorney’s fee unless we recover money for your injuries.*