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Sandy Grinnell, Staff Contributor
Sandy Grinnell, Staff Contributor
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Your Rights as a Visitor to the U.S.

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“I’m going to Disney World”

This phrase made infamous by sports champions from all around the athletic world continues to be a successful pitch (no pun intended) for Disney since the campaign began in 1987.

However, Disney World is just one of the feature spots in Florida. Each year millions flock to multiple hot-spot destinations including Orlando, Tampa and Miami. It’s estimated that 22 million travelers visited the mecca of United States tourism in the first quarter of this year alone. Similar to an overcrowded backyard barbeque, accidents are bound to happen.

As a traveler, one is put into a difficult position when faced with an injury to themselves or a loved one. It is all too common when vacationing, to feel vulnerable while away from home. So if you are faced with an unfortunate incident while on vacation here is a few nuggets of information that can be quite helpful.

Know your rights

In an accident involving a rental car, the same steps should be taken as if the car was your own: 1) Call the police 2) Do not be talked out of emergency medical care. If you feel hurt, seek medical attention 3) Call your insurance company 4) Do not give a recorded statement or medical records to the other insurance company.

If you’re injured at a theme park, you may be eligible for compensation even though your first thought may be the fine print you agreed to by purchasing the ticket. Although you may have assumed certain risks in the agreement, if the theme park is deemed to have acted recklessly or purposefully then they may still be held liable. Additionally, you are typically "waiving" only known risks involved in usual theme park participation. Hidden or unknown risks cannot, in good faith, be waived since they are not known.

Take Action

Once you have taken care of your personal health, have a friend or relative take pictures. Since you are on vacation, a camera should be readily accessible but if it isn’t, camera phone pictures have astonishing quality these days.

Pictures are especially important with injuries occurring inside hotels or theme parks. Photos of the water on the floor, a broken sign, rusted handrail, etc. can all be used as evidence in a premises liability case against the hotel or theme park. In such a case you may be entitled to compensation for your injury.

If you in an auto accident, take pictures of the cars involved in the accident if possible. Also take pictures of the area surrounding the accident scene displaying the right of way, street signs, etc. Just remember to do so safely as possible in high-traffic areas.

Follow-Up

Make sure to do your part in obtaining a police report for the car accident. Orange County makes police reports available online. Get pictures developed as soon as possible. Also, contact an attorney as soon as possible, even if you’ve left the state.

If you’ve already been injured in a rental car collision, or at a hotel or theme park, call Wooten, Kimbrough, Gibson, Doherty and Normand, P.A. at (866) 735-1102. For further information on Florida’s booming industry, check out their corporation website that caters to all things tourism.

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  1. Mike Bryant says:
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    Great and helpful information. Thanks for the post.