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kittyjg
07-10-2007, 06:46
For the past couple of years, a few friends and the instructors at the shop I frequent have suggested that I go on and get my Divemaster cert. I have a few questions, though.
<DIV> What kind of liability do I have once I have my DM?</DIV>
<DIV> Do I have any responsibility for someone other than my buddywhen I am on a personal dive trip?</DIV>
<DIV>I an sure other questions will come up, but those are the main ones I think about when the discussion arises. </DIV>
<DIV></DIV>
<DIV>Thanks.</DIV>

Dive-aholic
07-10-2007, 07:32
Your liability will depend on what capacity you're working as a DM. DMs are not responsible for planning dives or holding hands, unless you're being paid as a personal dive guide. For the most part, DMs assist instructors in classes and help maintain control. In exotic locations, they brief divers on dive sites and lead the dives.
<DIV></DIV>
<DIV>On personal dive trips, you're just a diver. The lawyers may try to make it out to be more than that, but you're still just a diver.</DIV>

Rabb
07-11-2007, 09:31
For the past couple of years, a few friends and the instructors at the shop I frequent have suggested that I go on and get my Divemaster cert. I have a few questions, though.
<div> What kind of liability do I have once I have my DM?</div>
<div> Do I have any responsibility for someone other than my buddywhen I am on a personal dive trip?</div>
<div>I an sure other questions will come up, but those are the main ones I think about when the discussion arises. </div>
<div></div>
<div>Thanks.</div>

If you are working for the dive shop you have some liability issues, but i'm sure you knew that. If you are just diving with friends or on a trip you shouldn't have a lot of concerns. However, the lawyers are always casting a wide net. When I received my DM the shop I went through put me on their master policy for free, which I greatly appreciated. However, I have a friend, that doesn't dive, that has a 10 yr old that does dive. I take him diving on occassion which leaves me open to liability. I am not diving with the shop, so the liability coverage doesn't extend. I made the decision to purchase my own liability policy. Sucks, but it is what it is. When I go on trips I offer the card I need to make the dive. If I can get by with an OW card that is the one I use. If AOW then that is the one I use. Good luck with your decision.

Jeff
07-11-2007, 16:47
Here's the deal:

Unfortunately the mindset seems to be "sue them all, let the judge sort it out". There's a very good chance that if an attorney finds out your professionally certified, you'll get named in the suit, even though you weren't operating in a professional capacity. Having your own insurance doesn't mean you won't get sued, any more than not having it means that you will. But in the event you do, you have a team of lawyers through the insurance company behind you, as opposed to being in a position to have to defend on your own.

I've had the opportunity to ride a shop policy, but I've always chosen to carry my own, and always will.

woody
07-13-2007, 04:36
Dive-aholic has it right! But so does Jeff. If an accident does happen everyone will be questioned as to what happened. TheLawyers will find out that you are a pro and know that pros carry insurance and you will be named in the lawsuit. So either you or your insurance will have to foot the bill for a wrongful claim against you. <?:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />
Thanks,
Woody

DMWiz
07-13-2007, 22:58
Oddly enough, just the fact that you have an insurance policy makes you a target no matter which card you used for the dive.

Just like in a car accident, if you only have basic coverage all people will get is 10k, but when you have lots of assets and have more coverage the lawyers will go for it.

I was told by an instructor that when he was a DM he carried $250k worth of liability coverage. That made him 250 thousand times more likely to get sued than anyone else in any given dive. Working or not.

I guess my point to the OP is, being a DM doesn't make you more liable if you're not working, but it does makes you more likely to get sued simply because of the fact that you have coverage.

Wys

cummings66
07-15-2007, 08:25
I know for a fact that having great coverage will tend to get you sued. I know of lawyers who won't touch an accident unless there's a big truck involved, know why? Money, there's no money in a small case and they'll do better chasing the big dogs.
<DIV></DIV>
<DIV>If you've got great coverage thenyou've also got a greater chance of being sued.</DIV>

georoc01
07-15-2007, 10:44
Regardless of your liability, if you have assets you will be sued. That is why we carry insurance.
<DIV></DIV>
<DIV>I know instructors that when they are doing personal dives they dive off their master diver card. So at least when it comes to the paperwork, they aren't listed as a dive master or an instructor on the dive.</DIV>

Queen
07-15-2007, 11:06
My LDS has been asking me to get my DM and for the reasons listed above I choose not to. I don't really have any desire to "go pro" and while I wouldn't mind helping out on shop dives I just don't want the added liability.

przeor
07-16-2007, 01:20
We're just finishing up our DM and getting ready to decide what to do about insurance. We can't decide if we should even carry the insurance if we aren't going to work with a shop (or on our own). We're probably won't start working with classes/students for a while and don't figure insurance will be cruicial until then...

frankc420
07-16-2007, 08:21
Insurance cost for a DM isn't but about $325 for a standard policy, if it were me (no, I'm not a DM yet), I would go ahead and get a private policy..

cummings66
07-16-2007, 11:45
My LDS wanted me to do DM for them as well, but I didn't want to added liability and more importantly I wanted to go do fun dives. My LDS has classes EVERY single weekend ALL year round except it slows down in the Winter time to mostly drysuit divers.
<DIV></DIV>
<DIV>I've got a 4 year old to play with and being a DM just doesn't cut it for me, as much as I'd like to help I want some free time and I don't want to be sued 2 years down the road. As in I DM now, give it up and a year later when I'm not even an active DM I get sued, only now I don't have insurance so it gets personal.</DIV>
<DIV></DIV>
<DIV>Too much risk for me.</DIV>

thesmoothdome
07-20-2007, 15:03
I used to worry about the insurance issue, but come on now, I quit diving for 10 years. I'm no more a professional in the industry than the ship's cook. I know in our society, I'd still be a target because of my past, but there's a hell of a lot of people with a lot more experience and diving skill than I'll ever have. Should they be held accountable? Should the rescue trained diver be held accountable? Outside of a teaching, guiding or leadership capacity, I think you can mount a pretty good defense. Of course, either way, you're going to have to mount that defense.
<DIV></DIV>
<DIV>My DM class was a blast. Most of the class had done AOW and Rescue together so we knew each other well and we learned a ton. I wouldn't trade the experience for anything. </DIV>
<DIV></DIV>
<DIV>If you want the education, get it and enjoy it. </DIV>