Florida Crocodile Injury Lawyer

Cowen Edwards represents injury victims in all different types of accidents and incidents in Fort Lauderdale. When you’re trying to take advantage of the city’s beautiful weather and access to lakes, rivers, and other waterways, there’s a number of different potential hazards. One of these that you might not expect offhand is an encounter with a crocodile. If you or a loved one have been injured in one of these encounters, contact us today for a free consultation.

Interacting With Crocodiles in Fort Lauderdale

Given the climate and surrounding ecosystem, it’s actually not surprising that crocodiles, alligators, and other forms of wildlife are found in Fort Lauderdale. While alligators are more common, crocodiles have been spotted in recent years.

While you might find them in the wild, it’s more likely that you’ll interact with crocodiles at one of the city’s many exhibits or shows. One of the main selling points of these events is that you get an up close and personal experience with a crocodile. Unfortunately, though, this can lead to accidents.

Usually, it involves:

  • Falling into an enclosure – These exhibits and shows typically have fencing or other barriers, but sometimes they don’t do a good job of keeping them maintained. This can lead to falls into the actual enclosure itself.

  • Safety warnings – While these exhibits and shows usually have trained specialists, they’ll still post signs and safety warnings. Ignoring these can sometimes lead to accidents.

  • Slip and falls – Outside of the barriers, these exhibits have wet or slippery surfaces to keep the crocodiles comfortable. This can lead to you or others slipping, falling, and getting hurt.

  • Getting too close – This is an issue, especially for children. They might not understand the hazards or danger, getting too close to the crocodile and falling victim to a bite or worse.

What You Should Do

Obviously, it’s not every day that you or someone you care about will come into contact with a crocodile. Then, if you do so at a show or exhibit, there’s likely liability waivers and other things in place to protect those in charge. Even still, you have legal rights if you get hurt at one of these events because of negligence. However, it’s very important that you do the right things:

  • Report what happened to someone in charge so they can respond
  • Get medical attention right away, either on-site or at an emergency room
  • Gather all the information you can, like pictures, video, or information from any witnesses
  • Call your insurance company and start their claims process

Like any other accident, these steps will not only take care of your safety, but will be important if you want to take legal action. Whether you need our team or not, though, depends on the circumstances.

Do You Need a Lawyer?

Even though these particular accidents aren’t as common as say a car accident, there’s still the possibility that you’ll be hurt. Still, these incidents can also be rather minor, meaning you probably won’t need to worry about legal action. At the same time, because these incidents are usually more severe and legally complex, you’ll probably need all the help you can get.

While you’re not required by law to have us represent you, we can assist you in several ways:

  • We’ll carefully examine what happened to determine who’s responsible.
  • Our team will collect medical records, witness statements, and accident reports to support your case.
  • We’ll talk to witnesses and bring in experts if needed to strengthen your claim.
  • We’ll take care of talking to insurance companies and the other party’s lawyers to protect your rights.
  • Our aim is to secure a fair settlement that considers the extent of your injuries and losses.

There’s a lot that goes into any injury claim, but it’s important to remember that our team can help you through the entire process.

Damages in an Injury Claim

One of the most important parts of any injury claim–including those involving a crocodile–is what your damages are. Whether you decide to file an insurance claim or lawsuit, you can recover certain losses and other financial support under Florida law. Generally, this includes things like:

  • Medical expenses and treatment bills
  • Loss of income or earnings
  • Property damage
  • Physical pain and suffering
  • Emotional distress and mental anguish
  • Loss of enjoyment of life and companionship
  • Punitive damages, in specific cases
  • Wrongful death expenses, such as funeral or burial costs, in fatal accidents.


The total amount recoverable hinges on several factors, but a good starting point is understanding the types of injuries that can happen:

  • Bite wounds
  • Infections
  • Broken bones or fractures
  • Ligament damage
  • Blood loss
  • Drowning
  • Psychological trauma
  • Death, in severe cases

In an injury claim, the total amount of damages you can get depends on a few things, like how the accident happened, how much you’re responsible for (comparative negligence), and how strong your case is. It’s also really important to follow the time limit for filing a claim, which in Florida is two years after the accident. If you miss this deadline, you might lose the chance to get these damages.

Cowen Edwards Can Support You

Dealing with injuries after any type of accident can quickly become overwhelming, but this is especially true in more unique circumstances like those involving a crocodile. The fact is, you have rights as an injury victim, and our team at Cowen Edwards can support you through the process. To learn more about your potential options, contact us today for a free consultation.