Who is liable in a drowning death?

It's summertime, which generally means that people all across North Georgia will be getting out on the water at Lake Lanier and other nearby rivers and lakes. Unfortunately, this also statistically means that some individuals will lose their lives in drowning accidents. Depending on the nature of the accident, a number of individuals and entities may be held liable in a wrongful death suit after a drowning.

If the drowning occurs in a maintained, regulated area such as a pool, then the owner and operator of the pool may face some responsibility. This is most common when the drowning was due to some negligent or reckless behavior by the pool's owner. This might include poor maintenance, or the absence of a lifeguard when one should be provided. Even if there is a lifeguard, and the behavior of the lifeguard contributed to the death, the owner may also face liability.

Of course, out on the lake there is a different set of concerns. The water can get rather crowded in summertime, and if a person is killed because of another person's negligence, that persons may face liability. In some cases, especially if drug or alcohol consumption contributed to the death, an individual may face criminal charges as well as civil liability.

If you have lost someone you love to drowning, you should not hesitate to reach out to an experienced attorney who can help you navigate this difficult season. With proper legal guidance, you can rest assured that your loved one will not be forgotten, that your rights will remain protected, and that justice will be served.

Source: findlaw, "Drowning," accessed May 12, 2017

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