Bed bugs are frustrating pests that can wreak havoc on your life for weeks after you suffer an infestation. You could be subjected to the creatures in numerous locations and you may even be unfortunate enough to bring them home with you, resulting in extermination expenses and a loss of property. Bed bugs are not limited to dirty or grimy areas; they can be present in the most luxurious hotels if a guest accidentally brought some in with luggage. You may not be aware of where your bed bug bites came from or how you became the victim of an infestation. If you have been bitten by bed bugs, you should seek the legal assistance of a bed bug lawyer in Stockton / San Joaquin County. Our team of experienced lawyers at the Bed Bug Legal Group can help you receive the compensation you deserve for your injuries and damages.
Key Details about Bed Bugs
In order for you to determine that you have a bed bug infestation, you need to be able to identify the creatures. Some people do not know what they look like and may incorrectly assume that fleas or other pests are the cause of the damages. For one, fleas, usually make their homes near pet beds or where animals hang out; they also primarily affect animals, despite occasionally biting humans too. Fleas can jump great distances as well, which is one of their telltale characteristics.
Bed bugs, on the other hand, are smaller than fleas and make homes near where humans sleep as opposed to animals. They do not get around by jumping; they are incapable of it, actually, and thus, they can only crawl from space to space. They are differently colored, often reddish brown, and more round in shape and flatter overall. They can grow up to 5mm in length and swell when engorged with blood, which changes their appearance. Bed bugs feast on human blood and choose to do so at nighttime when people are sleeping.
Their nests are strategically located near where victims sleep so they have quick and easy access to meals. When they emerge from their nests, they seek out flesh and bite into it, the pain of which is masked by the anesthetic present in the saliva. The pest can drink blood for up to ten minutes at a time thanks to the anticoagulant in the bite. It can then move to another spot on the body, often nearby; bed bug bites appear as clusters in zigzag patterns, and are usually red and swollen. They may not show up for a few days, though, and will itch once they do. Persistent scratching can lead to the bites getting scratched and opening and festering, which may result in infections if you are not careful.
Identifying the nests is important because it can save you a lot of time of money if you find bed bugs beforehand and avoid an infestation. If you are staying at a new location, you should investigate the area and check common locations of bed bugs, including underneath the mattress and headboard, behind electrical outlets and picture frames, inside couches and pillow cases, below sofa cushions and baseboards, and more. The creatures like to make nests in dark, damp places that are not easily accessed or visible. Telltale signs of nesting areas include the presence of cream colored eggs, shed skins of juvenile bed bugs, bloodstains on blankets and sheets from stray droplets of blood, black or brown droppings, and a distinct musty odor.
If you need help determining if bed bugs are the cause of your problems, reach out to a bed bug lawyer in Stockton / San Joaquin County for more assistance.
Steps to Take in the Event of an Infestation
If you have been bitten by bed bugs, you should immediately search the area to find where the nests are. Once you discover them, take photos of the affected areas and videos to document what you found. You should also take pictures of your injuries (bites). Once you have gathered sufficient evidence, you should contact the person in charge. There are different routes you can take that will be determined by the circumstances of the incident.
Hotels, motels, lodges, resorts, and other such places will usually immediately remove you from the room, place you in another free of charge, and clean the affected room. You likely will not be allowed back in; although this can be in the name of protection and safety for your health, it is equally as likely because the hotel manager does not want you to gather any additional evidence. He will also attempt to offer you compensation for your inconvenience; you may be given free stays at the hotel, vouchers, coupons, and other such perks, but be careful not to accept anything. If you do, the manager could say you already were taken care of and a lawsuit is thus unnecessary. Hotel managers have a duty to provide all guests with safe temporary living quarters that do not violate any health codes, and a bed bug infestation is an apparent violation.
Used furniture stores that sold you furniture with bed bugs may ask that you return the furniture for a refund, but you should keep it until further notice. The bed, mattress, couch, sofa, or other piece of furniture will be the key piece of evidence in your case. If you throw it away or return it for a refund, it will be very difficult to prove that you had bed bugs stemming from that used furniture store. You should keep your bill of sale, receipts, and any other documents showing that you did, in fact, purchase the furniture. Used furniture may not have been properly cleaned before it was resold, which is a mark of negligence from the store manager.
Newly rented apartments may also have bed bugs in them. It is up to landlords to sufficiently clean apartments before renting them out, which includes furnishings and carpeting. If a landlord is negligent in his duties, he may not have gotten the apartment cleaned beforehand. If you move into a new home and you discover bed bugs, the landlord can be held liable; however, if the bed bug situation appeared after you had already moved in, it may be hard to blame the landlord. This can be especially tricky because bed bugs can go for many weeks without a meal, and they may simply have been biding their time waiting for new hosts to feed off to show up.
You can receive more detailed information by contacting a bed bug lawyer in Stockton / San Joaquin County.
Compensation from a Lawsuit
Choosing to file a lawsuit against the responsible landlord, property owner, or property manager can be a wise decision, especially if you have accrued various damages from the incident. You should request the services of an expert lawyer to help you pursue the fairest compensation available. You may be able to have numerous expenses reimbursed or covered, including:
- Medical bills (hospitalization, doctor check-ups, medication, and future treatments)
- Damaged property (any furnishings that were thrown away or personal belongings that were ruined, as well as coverage for fumigation or extermination costs)
- Lost wages (due to missing work because of injuries or an inability to make it to your job, such as in instances where your car or home were compromised and required heavy cleaning)
- Pain and suffering (emotional stress, PTSD, anxiety, fear, and more stemming from the incident that can cause you to become hesitant to stay in new areas or have panic attacks brought on by the site of small pests)
It may be costly to suffer a bed bug infestation, and you should not be expected to pay for all the damages yourself if another party caused the problems. Pursuing compensation from the liable entity is the right choice, and our experienced bed bug lawyers in Stockton / San Joaquin County can secure you a fair settlement.
A Trusting Law Firm
Our qualified lawyers at the Bed Bug Legal Group have spent many years handling bed bug lawsuits and there is no better group available to assist you. We know all the nuances of the law and have recovered millions of dollars for our clients. We are characterized by our aggressive tactics in which we refuse to sit idly by while insurance agents undervalue your claims; we will relentlessly negotiate better settlement offers, and if we are not satisfied, we will take your case to a court to present it before a judge. You are our highest priority, and we will do all we can to win your case.
Call us today to schedule a free legal consultation with one of our accomplished attorneys. We invite you to ask questions about your case to clear up any confusion, and we will tell you what we believe your claim is worth and what we can earn for you. You will never be at a loss of information when you come to our firm, and you will also not suffer any monetary losses thanks to our zero fee guarantee. Under this policy, you will not pay any out of pocket expenses for our services; we only get our expenses paid if we win your case, and the money will be drawn from the settlement or verdict we bring you, not your bank account. If we lose, you don’t pay us any bills at all.
For more help, call a bed bug lawyer in Stockton / San Joaquin County. You may be able to earn thousands of dollars for your lawsuit.