If you’ve been on a vacation tour at least once in your life, there’s a high possibility you’re of the notion that nothing beats the monotony of life than traveling does. After a few days or weeks of adventure, relaxation, and leisure in another state or country, you come back relaxed, rejuvenated, and more energetic to continue with your day to day hassles like never before. However, whether you’re a regular traveler or a tourist who takes trips to a different country/state every once in a while, the law is the law… and regardless of where your next vacation or business trip takes you, you will always want to remain on the right side of the long arm. Also, you’ll want to ensure that your safety and your legal rights are protected even while you’re abroad. Simply put, it may come to a point where you need legal assistance. Below are a few potential reasons where a tourist may need a lawyer’s assistance.
1. Before Travelling (Get Familiar with Foreign Laws)
When traveling to a foreign country, you have the obligation to follow their laws as well as their cultures. Even though your respective embassy can protect you after breaking the law while in a foreign country, their ability is often limited. However, most tourists do not break the law intentionally, they find themselves in hot soup due to negligence. And needless to mention, laws may differ from one country to the other. What is legal in your country or state could be illegal in another state or country. For this reason, it is highly imperative to familiarize yourself with some basics about the law in your destination country before embarking on your journey. Due to the complex nature of the law, as well as the fact Law is a huge subject, you may need to seek advice from an experienced attorney depending on where you’re going.
2. Dealing with Immigration Issues
From time to time, tourists encounter several hurdles, including some that affect their ability to travel, or the duration they can stay in their destination country and what they can do while there. In most cases, these revolve around Visas, work permits, and citizenship. If you’re struggling with such, your best bet would be to speak to an immigration attorney for advice and help in solving the specific problem. Common immigration issues that may warrant seeking an attorney’s assistance may include but not limited to the following:
- When you need a waiver of discretionary relief such as asylum
- Trouble obtaining citizenship or USCIS green card
- You’re facing deportation/removal proceedings
- Denied immigration applications
- You wish to return to a country after deportation
- You urgently need an employment permit
- You’re seeking an investment-based visa
- You need legal help preparing crucial documents or filling forms that you find a bit confusing/time-consuming
These just being a few examples, there are many other situations where you may find the need to consult an immigration lawyer.
3. You’re A Crime Victim Abroad
It is not an uncommon thing to travel somewhere and get into a situation where you’re mugged or get mistreated by the locals. Luckily, many countries have laws in place that protect their citizens’ rights while abroad. As a matter of fact, things can be the other way around and you find yourself arrested and convicted for a crime that perhaps you didn’t even commit in the first place. Attorney Michael Litman, an experienced Westchester criminal defense lawyer says that in this situation, you’ll need the best legal representation you can get to have the charges reduced or even dropped. Your experienced criminal lawyer will also help explain the law to you, the crime you’re being charged with, and the potential outlook of the case. They can also help link you up with your embassy, notify your loved ones, and give you the options you have on how you can get out of the mess.
4. An Accident Abroad
When traveling and exploring abroad, it is not uncommon to find yourself going on road trips in a purchased or rented car. And let’s face it; none of us is immune to road accidents. Even when you’ve tried your best to remain as sober as you can, a reckless driver could come out of nowhere and bump into you! However, seeking accident compensation while on foreign land may not be as easy as it may be in your country. You may not know who to approach, where to report the incidence, and how to go about the entire process. You may not even be sure which kind of claim you should pursue. In this case, a personal injury or accident attorney will come in handy for legal advice and all the necessary assistance.
5. Your Travel Insurance Claim Was Denied
If you’re a seasoned traveler, there’s a high likelihood that you carry travel insurance. If not, travel insurance is basically the kind of insurance coverage that gives you emergency care when your trip turns into a mess. It can help replace lost luggage, cover for canceled trips, take care of medical bills incurred abroad, and so forth. However, what is covered and how much is covered will largely depend on the policy you pick when buying travel insurance. Also, you will need to make a claim to your travel insurer for them to cover the aforementioned emergencies. But this doesn’t mean that your insurer will always approve your claim. This is because basically, insurance policies have certain clauses that are often used to determine whether or not your claim is valid.
In other words, the insurer has the right to approve or deny your claim based on ground evidence as well as the outlines of the policy. A good example, one Bill Dunn got his travel insurance claim denied after he lost his job and had to cancel a trip he had booked to his nephew’s wedding in another country. He canceled the trip 6weeks before departure, upon realizing that he couldn’t afford it anymore, given that he was now jobless. The insurer considered his claim invalid on grounds that he had only been employed for 15 months (6 months through an employment agency and 11 months full-time). With this picture in mind, travel insurance can be complex and when making an appeal for a denied claim, you may need the assistance of an experienced lawyer.
Travelling gives you a chance to see new things, meet new people, make new friends, and get experiences that you can’t get in a lifetime in your local area or home country. However, there are quite a number of legal issues that surround traveling, some of which most tourists tend to overlook. With the above few pointers, we’re hopeful that you got inspiration on how legal assistance may be necessary for you as a tourist.