The Statue of Liberty is one of New York City’s most popular attractions. According to the National Park Service (NPS), as many as 4.5 million people visit Liberty Island and the Statue of Liberty National Monument each year. While the NPS has installed safety systems and set rules to help keep visitors safe, these measures have not eliminated the risk of accidents at the site.
If you suffer an injury at the Statue of Liberty or Ellis Island, you may be owed compensation for your losses through a personal injury claim. Depending on what caused your injury, several different parties could be responsible. For more information about accidents at the Statue of Liberty or Ellis Island and what you can do if you’re hurt in one, contact Finz & Finz, P.C. to talk to one of our NY personal injury attorneys.
What Types of Injuries Can You Suffer on Ellis Island or the Statute of Liberty?
Possible injuries from accidents that happen to visitors to the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island include:
- Broken bones
- Crush injuries
- Dislocated joints
- Drowning after falling off the ferry
- Herniated discs
- Internal injuries and bleeding
- Lacerations and abrasions from hitting the ground or sharp objects and surfaces
- Ligament, tendon, and muscle injuries
- Overexertion leading to medical emergencies such as heat stroke, exhaustion, heart attacks, or strokes
- Perforation injuries
- Repetitive stress injuries
- Spinal cord damage and paralysis
- Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs)
What Should You Do After Being Injured at the Statue of Liberty?
To protect your rights, you can take the following steps after suffering an accident during a visit to the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island:
- Get contact information from any eyewitnesses to the accident– Objective accounts of the incident can be valuable as you seek compensation for your injuries.
- Seek prompt medical attention– Liberty Island has park rangers who can call or provide emergency medical assistance. See a doctor as soon as possible after the accident to document the injuries you suffered.
- Take photos or videos of the accident scene with your cell phone– If possible, use your phone to document important details such as the hazardous condition that caused the accident, a lack of safety equipment or warning signs, or weather and lighting conditions.
- Keep copies of bills and invoices– Documentation from your medical treatment, property repair estimates, and copies of your income statements or pay stubs if you take time off work due to injuries. This will help establish the extent of your losses.
- Talk to a lawyer – Reach out to a personal injury attorney as soon as possible to discuss the details of the accident and learn more about your legal options for obtaining financial compensation for your injuries.
Who May Be At-Fault in an Accident on Ellis Island or at the Statue of Liberty?
Depending on where and how your accident happened, some possible parties that may be responsible for your injuries include:
- The City of New York
- The Ellis Island Foundation
- The U.S. Federal Government
- The States of New York and New Jersey
- Private boat and tour operators
- Statue City Cruises
- Other visitors to Ellis Island and/or the Statue of Liberty
How Long Do You Have to File a Claim?
The amount of time you have to pursue a claim after an accident at the Statue of Liberty or Ellis Island will depend on who is at fault:
- The U.S. Federal Government — Under the Federal Tort Claims Act, you have a two-year statute of limitations to file.
- The City of New York — You must provide a 90-day Notice of Claim if you are filing against NYC.
- Private boat and tour operators — Most claims against private operators have a three-year statute of limitations.
- The States of New York and New Jersey — You also only have 90 days to file a Notice of Claim against either New York or New Jersey.
- Other Visitors — You have three years to file a lawsuit.
The above deadlines for filing a claim or a lawsuit may be shorter or longer depending on the facts of your case. It is critically important to speak with a personal injury lawyer in New York immediately following an accident at Ellis Island or the Statue of Liberty so that all court deadlines are met and your legal options are protected.
Contact a New York Personal Injury Lawyer to Seek Compensation
Don’t wait to get legal help with your injury claim. Contact Finz & Finz, P.C. today for a free, no-obligation consultation with a New York personal injury lawyer about your options for recovering compensation. Our firm will vigorously pursue maximum financial recovery on your behalf.