Bed bug infestations can be a debilitating experience to suffer through, no matter if you are affected while traveling and staying at a hotel or if you are at home. If the infestation was brought on because of the negligent actions of another party and you suffered various bites from the creatures, you could file a lawsuit to pursue compensation for your damages. It may be difficult to prove that the specific entity had a hand in your injuries, so an experienced bed bug lawyer in Ohio in Cleveland, Columbus, Toledo, or Cincinnati can help. Our team of attorneys at the Bed Bug Legal Group has handled these types of lawsuits for many years, and we have made it our mission to ensure that all of our clients are treated with respect and receive the fairest settlements possible for their injuries.
Bed Bugs – Details and Information
Bed bugs are small insects that feast on human blood, generally while the person is sleeping. You may not be aware that you were bitten until some hours or days later; the bites are often red and inflamed and show up in a zigzag pattern after the fact. You do not feel the bites when they happen because of the anesthetic quality in their saliva, and your blood continues to flow because of the anticoagulant present as well.
Some people often believe fleas are bed bugs, but fleas stay near animals and animal beds, choosing to infest them instead of humans, although they will bite you too. Fleas can also jump, while bed bugs can only crawl. If you feel you have a bed bug infestation, you should properly identify the creatures so you can move forward with legal action and repair measures. Here are some ways to identify bed bugs:
- Reddish-brown in color
- 1.5mm to 5mm in length, but can grow larger when engorged with blood after a meal
- Flat and round bodied
- Slow moving as they can only crawl
- Distinct musty odor
Figuring out that that creatures are present in your home or at a location you are staying is also crucial. Anytime you stay somewhere, such as at a hotel or motel, you should inspect the room to see if there are any bed bugs. You can prevent a long headache if you check ahead of time as opposed to after an attack has already finished. Further, you should properly inspect an apartment or house that you may move in to and meticulously examine any used furniture that you are interested in purchasing from an outlet store. Some of the indicators of a bed bug infestation include:
- Small, cream colored, oval shaped eggs
- Dark stains on the sheets that indicate blood from bites
- Red stains from crushed bed bugs
- Droppings, which are dark brown or black mounds
- Exoskeletons of juvenile bed bugs
Discovering that there are bed bugs nearby can be a shocking occurrence, especially if you woke up suffering from bites. The creatures can be found primarily in dark, damp places; they do not usually nest out in the open where they are easily visible. You may have to do a fair bit of searching to find the nests, as they can be in numerous places around the space. Some of spots include:
- Curtain folds
- Mattress creases
- Electrical outlets
- Picture frames
- Sofa cushions
- Drawer joints
- Loose wallpaper and molding
- Baseboards and headboards
You may find yourself tearing a room apart trying to find bed bugs. Once you have found them after being bitten, you should contact a bed bug lawyer in Toledo, Cincinnati, Columbus, or Cleveland for more help taking the next step of legal action.
In order to file a personal injury lawsuit against the responsible party, you must be able to prove four points of negligence. These four points are as follows:
- You were owed a duty of care: The property owner, landlord, hotel manager, or furniture store supervisor has a duty to you to make sure you are not exposed to any harms by staying at the vicinity or purchasing the furniture. They essentially promise to keep you safe for as long as you are doing business with them.
- The duty of care was breached: If a party does not protect you, whether by selling you infested furniture or not properly cleaning a room that has been contaminated with bed bugs, the care that they were supposed to bestow on you was violated. In some cases, this breach has a place in the law (for example, bed bugs in apartment buildings can be labeled a health code violation).
- The breach led to an incident: Because the party did not do its due diligence, there was an incident involving bed bugs; notably, an attack in the night.
- The incident resulted in physical injuries: Bed bug bites can be serious injuries if they become infected. Although the bugs do not transmit diseases, there are still risks involved. This is an important part of the lawsuit; if you do not suffer any physical harm, you won’t be able to file a personal injury lawsuit.
If all of these points are true, you can move forward with a lawsuit and work to receive compensation. You will need to collect evidence to prove that you were hurt by bed bug bites that infested a space you were in. The most important piece of evidence can vary from circumstance to circumstance; for example, if you bought a used mattress that was infested with bed bugs, you should not clean it, throw it away, or return it to the store, as it will be the primary piece of evidence used. However, if you were in a hotel or motel during the incident, you should be certain to take as many photos and videos of you can. The nests bed bugs, injuries you suffered, and more can all be used to back up your claim. You should always keep documents, receipts, bills of sale, emails, and other such proof to further show that you were a victim in that particular establish.
Importantly, you should not accept any compensation from the responsible party. They may try to give you credits, coupons, free rooms, a refund, or something else; if you accept, you could be said to have already been repaid for the damages, and pursuing additional compensation may not work.
A bed bug lawyer in Toledo, Cincinnati, Columbus, or Cleveland can help you file a claim and figure out the statute of limitations for your lawsuit. In Ohio, there is a two year deadline during which you can file a lawsuit; if you miss this deadline, you may not be able to pursue compensation.
You should not be expected to cover your own expenses if you were the victim of a bed bug infestation that started because of another party’s negligent actions. You may be able to receive coverage for:
- Medical expenses and hospitalization costs, as well as medication costs and any future doctoral check ups
- Property damage for anything you owned that had to be thrown away or repaired, in addition to fumigation costs
- Lost income for any days you missed or will miss work
- Pain and suffering for the emotional trauma you suffered because of the infestation and ensuing bites
It can be extremely difficult to receive the compensation you deserve if you do not hire an expert bed bug attorney in Toledo, Cincinnati, Cleveland, or Columbus. You may not be knowledgeable enough to negotiate a fair settlement, and you may not have the time to dedicate to winning a lawsuit. For this reason, it is crucial that you hire legal counsel to assist you.
Our Firm: Here for You
Our expert attorneys at the Bed Bug Legal Group are constantly handling bed bug lawsuits in the Ohio area. We have years of experience with these types of cases, and we know all the nuances and details of winning settlements. There is no better choice than our law firm if you have been hurt by bed bug bites. Our aggressive lawyers have a penchant for tirelessly negotiating with insurance agents and we will not stop until a satisfactory offer is on the table; if it isn’t, we will take your case to court to fight for your rights in front of a judge and jury.
Call us today to set up a free legal consultation with a professional bed bug lawyer in Cincinnati, Columbus, Toledo, or Cleveland. Any questions you have can be answered, and we will be more than happy t look over your claim and determine how much it’s worth. We will also give you more details about our zero fee guarantee, which essentially promises that you will never pay any out of pocket expenses for our representation. If we win, you won’t have to pay us yourself; our fees will come from the settlement we win for you. If we lose, you owe us nothing regardless, and we suffer the losses of the case ourselves.
If you want to file a lawsuit against a negligent property owner or store, reach out to a bed bug attorney in Cleveland, Toledo, Cincinnati, or Columbus.