San Bernardino County Bed Bug Bite Lawyers
How Can Landlord or Hotel Owners Be Liable for Bed Bugs?
Hotel operators and owners of apartment and condo buildings owe thier guests and tenants a duty to provide a place that is devoid of potentially harmful and unsanitary conditions, including bed bug infestations. Unfortunately, many owners and operators fail to properly inspect for bed bugs and take necessary measures to rid of infestations resulting in severe bed bug bites to hotel guests and residents of apartment buildings. Duque Law is proud to provide legal representation for victims of severe bed bug bites.
Property owners and their agents may also be subject to disclosure liability. Some states and cities have laws that require that property owners disclose the presence of bed bugs within their property. Failure to warn tenants or guests about bedbugs could subject the owner or the owner’s agent to liability as well.
When these disclosure laws have been violated, the tenant can be relieved of the duty to pay rent in full or in part. The tenant may also be entitled to compensation for any injuries or health problems resulting from the infestation of bed bugs. Damages may be higher if the tenant or guest can prove that the landowner was aware of the bed bug infestation, and did not take reasonable steps to address it.
While their name implies otherwise, bed bugs can make their homes in any number of objects and appliances, including but not limited to carpeting and upholstery, drapes and curtain rods, outlets, wallpaper, and even ceilings. When hotel guests bring bed bugs back in their suitcase, their entire homes can become infested in a matter of weeks.
How to Tell If You Have Been Bitten by Bed Bugs
Bed bug bites are frequently misidentified as flea, mosquito or spider bites. Bites from bed bugs can be distinguished from other bug and insect bites based on the following characteristics:
- Several welts, typically found in concentrated rows or clusters
- A bite diameter of approximately 3/8″, or about half an inch
- Welts that itch intensely
- A pale pink hue with a darker red spot in the center
- Specks of blood on the bedding
Since bed bugs typically strike while victims sleep, the bites from these nocturnal pests tend to appear on areas of the body which are left exposed by pajamas and sleepwear, such as the face, feet, neck and hands.
Bite victims should remember that self-diagnosis always carries the danger of potential misidentification. Even if you feel confident in your ability to identify your bites, it is critically important to consult a doctor to ensure proper identification and treatment. Bed bug bites can lead to added medical complications which far exceed itching and general discomfort.
Health Risks Caused by Bites and Infestations
Reactions to bed bug bites often vary between each victim. Some people have very mild reactions while others experience serious health issues that can be both physically and emotionally devastating.
For instance, frequent scratching can cause bites to open and become infected, a condition known as impetigo. Impetigo is a bacterial skin infection that can cause symptoms such as pus production, inflammation, skin lesions, as well as swollen lymph nodes. Impetigo can also cause secondary infections that can result in further health problems.
Unfortunately, impetigo is highly contagious and can easily spread from the original victim to people who come in contact with afflicted. Consequently, the bug bite victim can be restricted from going to work, resulting in loss of wages in addition to escalating medical expenses.
An experienced personal injury attorney will discuss with you not only your existing medical bills, but what costs you expect to incur for future treatment or therapy, and whether you have lost income or will lose future income as a result of your injuries. Other types of damages you may be able to recover include pain and suffering, emotional distress, loss of normal life, and disability and disfigurement. Your attorney’s goal will be to convince the insurance company or a jury to compensate you for all of those costs or as much as is possible given the limits of the insurance coverage.
In the end, your personal injury attorney is your advocate in court. At the Law Offices of Brent A. Duque, we maintain a staff of a highly professional, knowledgeable, aggressive and successful attorneys who represent injured people through our offices that stretch across Southern California. Time limitations apply to any injury claim you might have, so for purposes of investigating a possible case and possibly preserving evidence, it is best for you to contact us immediately after an injury.
Contact our San Bernardino County Personal Injury Attorney at 1-877-241-9554 to learn more about your legal options. A free consultation is just a phone call away. You can even use our online contact form, and we’ll reply to you quickly.