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Ely
Ely, Attorney
Category: International Law
Satisfied Customers: 102142
Experience:  Private practice with experience in common law, civil law, international family law, and international contracts.
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I need to find out what are the local Cuban laws / building

Customer Question

I need to find out what are the local Cuban laws / building / health & safety standards / regulations / customs with respect to someone walking back to their hotel room in a resort, who tripped over a defective step. Also on the same matter, I require advice on the duty of care in Cuba for occupiers of holiday accommodation. Essentially, what I need here are various documents addressing such matters.
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: International Law
Expert:  Ely replied 3 years ago.
Hello friend. My name is Ely, and welcome to JustAnswer. Please note: (1) this is general information only, not legal advice, and, (2) there may be a slight delay between your follow ups and my replies.

At this time, there are no Cuban experts on JustAnswer. I am an expert based in USA, but I can provide an answer. Would this be acceptable?

This is not an answer, but an Information Request. I need this information to answer your question. Please reply, so I can answer your question. Thank you in advance.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hello Ely and thank you for your prompt response. Yes, I fully appreciate that this is information only and not legal advice. Also, I am fine with the slight delay. As long as you can provide the information requested, I am more than happy to continue. As I mentioned, I am really looking for documentation that I can refer to.

Expert:  Ely replied 3 years ago.
Lisa,

Okay, no problem. Please allow me a few moments while I type out the answer; apologies in advance for the wait...
Expert:  Ely replied 3 years ago.
Negligence in Cuba
While Cuba has overhauled much of its legal system to correspond to socialist doctrine, a lot of old Spanish and civil law remains, especially when it comes to private actions such as "negligence." This is called "negligencia."

Essentially, you are not going to find many articles online about Cuban law. This is because there are not any. Cuban is mostly closed off from the internet and access is strictly regulated. In addition, there is little international research about Cuban law.

What I can tell you is that it is possible to sue. However, it is hard to do. This is because:

1) Cuba is not part of the Hague Convention for process service, meaning it is "hard" to sue someone there. If you send process (i.e. a lawsuit) from the UK, they may simply not respond or even get it;

2) They may not recognize a UK judgment if you get one;

3) If you get a UK judgment, it is hard to enforce unless the entity has holdings in the UK or EU.

Pursuing a Lawsuit
Because of this, you may wish to pursue this matter in Cuba. Attorneys do work in Cuba, and you can retain one - see here and here to find one.

For an overview of the Cuban legal system, see here, but I am afraid you are simply not going to find more than this.

Your basis of suit here would be negligencia - negligence - the failure of the hotel to maintain proper safety for its guests. The issue is that even if you get a judgment, it may be much less than what you are expecting because simply speaking, Cuban Courts award less money.

Good luck.

Please note: I aim to give you genuine information and not necessarily to tell you only what you wish to hear. Please, rate me on the quality of my information and do not punish me for my honesty. I understand that hearing things less than optimal is not easy, and I empathize.

Gentle Reminder: Please use the REPLY button to keep chatting, or RATE my answer when we are finished. Kindly rate my answer as one of the top three faces and then submit, as this is how I get credit for my time with you. Rating my answer the bottom two faces does not give me credit and reflects poorly on me, even if my answer is correct. I work very hard to formulate an informative and honest answer for you; please reciprocate my good faith. (You may always ask follow ups at no charge after rating.)
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hi, thanks for this.


 


Let me give you a little more detail.


 


There is a claim being brought in the UK against a UK travel company that this holiday to Cuba was booked with.


 


The person that was injured stayed in a resort hotel in Cuba which was booked through this UK travel company.


 


Essentially the UK travel company will only settle the claim if the Claimant can point to local standards in Cuba being breached.


 


That's why I really need some guidance on what are the local standards in Cuba for the state of pavements / walkways and are the responsibilities of the Cuban hotel owners in respect to this.

Expert:  Ely replied 3 years ago.
Hi, thanks for this.

No problem.

There is a claim being brought in the UK against a UK travel company that this holiday to Cuba was booked with.

If the claim is being brought IN the UK against a UK company, then UK law applies! So Cuban law does not apply, UK law does. It is simply that the local CUBAN STANDARD is seen as the reasonable standard of maintenance of the grounds, not a UK standard. There is no published Cuban standard, however.

That's why I really need some guidance on what are the local standards in Cuba for the state of pavements / walkways and are the responsibilities of the Cuban hotel owners in respect to this.

You are not going to find this, I am afraid. This does not exist. The Cuban government - which controls all media - does not put out such reports. What you seek is an "expert" on Cuban sociology and law. You can find this by letting your barrister have someone from the local university/college who teaches about Cuba testify - this will be just as good. In addition, their testimony will likely then be favorable to you, as they would be YOUR expert.

Gentle Reminder: Again, surely you prefer that I be honest in my answer – please remember that rating negatively due to receiving bad news still hurts the expert – it is simply the way that the system is set up. Please use REPLY button to keep chatting, or RATE my answer when we are finished. (You may always ask follow ups free after rating.)

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