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C-Card roulette

Discussion in 'Advanced Scuba' started by Chilly_Diver, Oct 27, 2017.

  1. CrumhornDiver

    CrumhornDiver Divemaster

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Arlington, Virginia
    :surrender:I think we've heard well from both sides. I think both sides have been well articulated here so someone can make an informed decision.

    If you show your professional card, maybe you will be brought into litigation, maybe not. If you show the lowest certification card you need for the dive, maybe you will be brought into litigation, maybe not. Maybe a lawyer will find your highest certification and allege you should have acted, maybe not.

    MargaritaMike shared his personal experience. I think everyone should take that into consideration.

    In the end, the American litigation system can be summed up by one of my favorite Far Side cartoons:
    Damned If You Do.jpg

    For me, if something bad happens during a dive, and I can safely try to help a diver in need, I will do so based on my training and ability. Afterward, my certification levels will come out if I in fact stepped in. If I get sued, I get sued. It's a risk I'm personally willing to take. I would not be able to live with myself if someone was in trouble, I had the training and ability to help, there was a need for my help, and I stood by and did nothing. I have some experience dealing with emergencies that I can draw on. Others may not. YMMV
  2. sigxbill

    sigxbill Tech Instructor

    OK - I think I got to the bottom of this, and thought you all might like to know the result. I spoke with the legal department at PADI, and determined victim attorneys can discover highest levels multiple ways, including: getting a padi dive center to look up a padi diver's highest level, or submitting a subpoena or court ordered discovery to padi, ssi, naui, etc., which attorneys regularly do. PADI had no opinion regarding what card to show for protecting it's off duty professionals the most.

    The representative I spoke with shared that within the 30+ years she has worked at PADI, she couldn't remember any case where a dive professional unrelated to the victim was sued. Unfortunately for @MargaritaMike - he must have been an exception...

    We all already knew anyone can sue anyone for anything, so no way to avoid that.

    So since you're potentially damned either way (thanks for the graphic @CrumhornDiver !) - show the card that you think will benefit you the most.

    MichaelMc likes this.
  3. jadairiii

    jadairiii Solo Diver

    The main way attorneys find this information is when you sit down for your deposition in the wrongful death case and they ask you "what is your highest level of SCUBA certification?". Along with "how many SCUBA agencies do you hold certifications from?"

    You could always lie, but you would be under oath, and the attorneys would find out sooner or later, and then you would find yourself before a judge on a contempt hearing.
  4. Diving Dubai

    Diving Dubai Instructor, Scuba

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Ras Al Khaimah, UAE
    Do you really think that lawyers limit themselves to Pro cards? No, if they are trying to squeeze a settlement they'll go for the most experienced diver (see Malta)
  5. Diving Dubai

    Diving Dubai Instructor, Scuba

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Ras Al Khaimah, UAE
    I don't have anywhere near your experience. But I agree.

    I my limited experience, the people that lie, aren't that smart. (tick no to smoking and over 45, when you know their DoB and they're smoking)

    Even if you're alarm bells don't go off when the BS needle goes to red, the first kit up and the first dive shows who can and who can't. It's just our inconvenience having to shuffle groups to put these people with their actual experience level, rather than the one they think they should be with
    charlier likes this.
  6. BCSGratefulDiver

    BCSGratefulDiver Mental toss flycoon ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 2,500 - 4,999
    Location: On the Fun Side of Trump's Wall
    True, but on the other hand, pro cards generally mean the person is carrying a liability policy ... and lawyers tend to target the deepest pockets ...

    ... Bob (Grateful Diver)
    Eric Sedletzky and Scuba J7 like this.
  7. Diving Dubai

    Diving Dubai Instructor, Scuba

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Ras Al Khaimah, UAE
    True also.

    However, if I were to show my Pro card in the US I could. Doesn't mean I can practice because I don't have liability insurance (it's not needed here because we have different laws). So bring it on lawyers

    Actually I like lawyers. They've given me hours of amusement. I've been an expert witness 5 times for both prosecution and defence. Been on the winning side 5 times. Lawyers are all about theatrics and egos and are easy to shut down if you know your subject
  8. Eric Sedletzky

    Eric Sedletzky Contributor

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: California
    I was just going to say, frivolous lawsuit attorneys look for the pot of money first and foremost, they don't work for free. They are not going to spend weeks investigating someone who doesn't have a pot to piss in. Two instructors, one owns a dive shop and has a nice house, car, and money in the bank plus other assets. The other one owns no property, has no savings, no assets, drives an old beater, and pretty much lives hand to mouth as a vagabond.
    Which one do you think they are going to go after?
  9. MargaritaMike

    MargaritaMike Divemaster ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: On a non-divable lake in SE Texas
    @sigxbill - I apologize if I mislead you. My experience was not because of disclosing professional certification. It was from being "low hanging fruit" with deep pockets that led to a groundless, baseless, frivolous lawsuit that I had to fight for two years. It was not diving related. I am just somewhat cautious now about exposing myself to ANY liability. It was NOT a fun experience.
    I'm not sure how someone can find my highest level of certification. "I" had some difficulty and it was MY cert. Giving the info that I provide with my AOW was not sufficient to get to my DM credentials with my certifying agency. Obviously, with a subpoena or court order, it may be immediately forthcoming.
    I'm not saying that my way is the right way or the best way. I'm just saying it's MY way. I have given my reasons. If they don't work for you, then great. Do it YOUR way.
    Just remember this: I'd agree with you but then we would BOTH be wrong. :rofl3::D:rofl3:
    :cheers: - M²
    sigxbill and northernone like this.
  10. northernone

    northernone Contributor Rest in Peace ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Currently: Cozumel, from Canada
    Well I'm back from an experience yesterday from which I'm convinced informing the shop owner of the highest cert has it's advantages. (I still wouldn't in a sue happy country)

    2 years ago I rented tanks from a dive op near tulum. Could have introduced myself as an OW diver and been done with it. Instead I chatted cave diving and mentioned I was a dive instructor in Canada. Volunteered to help translate some course material into French for one of his instructors doing an OW class.

    Showed up yesterday to snorkel nearby and dropped by to say hi. He offered to loan me his complete cave gear kit in doubles for a dive instead. Also outfitted a friend in rental equipment for nearly no money.

    More a story of kindness and a friendship advantage but it did start with certification level identification.

    Last edited: Nov 9, 2017
    RayfromTX, gcarter, sigxbill and 2 others like this.

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