The woman had first sued in 2007, after a dispute regarding some art purchased on a Princess cruise. The woman, a former native of Canada who had just immigrated to the United States, had booked a Princess cruise to celebrate this event. On the cruise, the woman bought several lithographs, which were shipped to her home. However, the art she received appeared different than what she had ordered. When she attempted to return it, the art dealer from Carnival Corp. (Princess’ parent company), charged her a $585 art-buying fee, which she contested.
The woman’s husband — a labor, employment and personal injury lawyer — represented her in court. The case was settled in 2010, but the couple has still been unsuccessful in recovering the $33,000 they spent in legal and related case expenses. Their dispute continued to drag on for another four years prior to the attempted booking of the second cruise, and culminated in the discovery that she had been blacklisted.
In a rare intervention from the Federal Maritime Commission, the cruise line was ordered to lift the ban. “Do-not-book” orders, they said, are reserved for people who have caused disruptions on board. The cruise line insists that the woman is a “vexatious,” extortive litigant who will seek future lawsuits, but legally, this is not grounds to bar her.
While this whole case may seem like a series of “first-world problems,” this woman still deserved fair treatment. Despite her litigations, she was not a security threat. This case is also a good example of the need for impartiality in court. It may have been convenient that this woman’s husband was a lawyer, but this may have harmed her credibility and limited her options. She may have been better served by a lawyer specializing in cruise ship accidents and maritime law.
If you are injured or unfairly treated on a cruise, you deserve compensation for your damages. An attorney with a history of successful cruise ship litigation will have the specialized knowledge your case demands.
Sun Sentinel, “Princess Cruise Line ordered to lift ban on Weston resident” Alysha Khan, Aug. 02, 2013