How to File a Claim Against Seabourn Cruise Line

Make your voice heard and make Seabourn pay: These are your options!

Have you struggled with the Seabourn cruise line, had a problem with them over charging your account, failing to credit your account for a promotion or discount, or just had an issue with the service or a cancellation fee?

You’ve probably headed straight to customer service but with so many customer service numbers for every cruise line, it can be a headache to find the right one, let alone to speak to a human being who has the power to fix the problem.

So now what?

File a claim against Seabourn Cruise Line in small claims courts

What is it?

When you use Seabourn Cruise Line your contract has a lot of fine print some of which says that when things go wrong you can’t sue the company with most forms of litigation but you can file a claim against Seabourn Cruise Line in small claims court.

Small claims court is an option for you to go before a local judge and get a monetary award. However, each court has court limits on how much you can ask for so not every claim qualifies, so not every situation qualifies.

When to try it

This is a very long process with multiple trips to the courthouse and to the post office so make sure you have a lot of time and energy on your hands before you start.

What you need to do

Every court has its own procedures so you have to be very careful to look up your state court website and find any additional information for your county. Follow every step laid out on the site so that you know what to do, what forms to gather, where to go, and when.

What to expect

If you follow all of the rules and have enough evidence to support your claim chances are you’ll get a good compensation award from the judge. There’s even a high chance that the Seabourn Cruise Line will offer you a settlement early on in exchange for dropping the case.

File a complaint against Seabourn Cruise Line with the Better Business Bureau

What is it?

The Better Business Bureau and all of its local chapters are private organizations. They are funded by affiliate fees from businesses and they collect and publish complaints online. Using those complaints they also provide companies with a rating. Companies have the opportunity to respond to these complaints and make resolutions, actions that help improve that rating.

When to try it

If you see that the Seabourn Cruise Line is responding to other complaints you have a higher likelihood of them responding to yours by publishing on their page. If they are however, you can still get your complaint out there for other people to see.

What you need to do

Visit their page on the Better Business Bureau website and follow the instructions to submit a complaint.

What to expect

The expected outcome will differ based on whether the company responds or not. If they respond, they might ask you for more information to try and resolve the problem. If they don’t respond, then nothing happened other than your complaint is added to the other complaints that make up the rating for the cruise line.

File a claim against Seabourn Cruise Line through NAM Arbitration

What is it?

This is a legal option that is an alternative to going to small claims court. You might not be able to sue Seabourn Cruise Line in most situations but you can use arbitration or mediation to still get a reasonable settlement. In fact, in many cases the company will offer a settlement as soon as you notify them that you’re pursuing this route or very early on in the case because it costs them money to continue with arbitration.

When to try it

This option doesn’t take as much time so, as long as you are willing to commit to a few meetings and are able to follow the directions as laid out by NAM very explicitly it’s a good option to consider. It’s also great for situations that don’t qualify for small claims court.

What you need to do

First, you need to submit forms to NAM which include:

  • Names, addresses, and telephone numbers for each party to the case
  • Internal filing numbers for corporate parties, 
  • Whether mediation or arbitration is selection
  • The nature of the claims
  • And an agreement that the settlement can’t be publicly adjudicated, the mediator (in mediations) can’t be called as a witness, and the arbitrator’s decision (in arbitration) is legally binding. 

Second, you have to notify the cruise line within 24 hours by giving them copies of all the documents you submitted.

Third, you have to follow the rules as laid out by NAM for or  arbitration depending on which you selected. You can find their rules and procedures quite well here, or you can contact NAM at 800-358-2550. 

What to expect

For either mediation or arbitration, there are hearings scheduled by NAM.  And with mediation, once those are scheduled you have to attend with any information you have to back up your case. During the session you will negotiate with the cruise line and forth at your side. You will both try to come to an agreement and only once an agreement is reached is that outcome binding. This can be a long or short process depending on the situation.

If you have selected arbitration it works a bit more like a full court proceeding in that you have a discovery phase where you provide the arbitrator with a statement of your facts and each claim you are pursuing as well as any evidence you have for those claims. You have to do this 10 days prior to the hearing. There are also minimum and maximum awards that can be applied to your arbitration case. Once this is done, the information is presented during the hearing and you can have an attorney help you with all of this and be present. You can opt for live testimonies if you have witnesses. Whatever the arbitrator decides at the end of the hearing is binding.

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