Bed Bug Lawsuit: A Guide

hotel room with potential bed bug infestation
Madeleine Jones
October 6, 2021

When you visit any location you expect the highest level of accommodation and care in the hotel you’re staying, or in any other establishment. You should never be exposed to dangers such as bed bugs, mold, or vermin. Bed bugs can cause widespread damage and be very frustrating if they infest multiple areas in the hotel. You may have your hotel room compromised or may be bitten. In the event of finding or being bitten by bed bugs in your hotel, you should file a bed bug lawsuit against the party responsible for allowing you to stay in an infected room. Our expert team of hotel injury lawyers at Cogburn Law can help you if you were bitten by bed bugs while in the state of Nevada.

What Are Bed Bugs?

Bed bugs are very small animals, as small as a dime. They are not always easy to see if you don’t know what they look like. They are flat-bodied, round, and reddish-brown in color. Some people often confuse them with fleas. However, the key difference is in how they move. Bed bugs only crawl from their nests to their victims, while fleas can jump long distances. If you see a bug jumping, it is not a bed bug.

Bed bugs tend to come out at night while you are sleeping. They crawl to exposed portions of skin and bite. People don’t feel this because their venom has an anticoagulant. Because of this, they can suck on blood for ten minutes at a time. They bite in a zigzag pattern and will go back to their nests once they are satisfied.

Bed bugs can be dormant for weeks with no food and can be difficult to kill.  If you don’t find bed bugs in your hotel, you may need to take a closer look, they could be lurking about out of sight.

You may not know that there are bed bugs in your hotel until you’ve found bite marks on yourself. They look like red marks on the skin, irritating but not itchy. In some instances, they can turn into festering sores if you’re scratching too much. This will potentially lead to infections. Luckily, they do not carry diseases, so there is no risk of catching any severe illnesses.

Where You Can Find Them

In a state as big as Nevada, you can find bed bugs anywhere. In a tourist spot such as Las Vegas, they could be anywhere. You could find them at rental cars, hotels, motels, and even casinos. Each day, Las Vegas receives hundreds of thousands of travelers and there is no way in knowing how many of them bring bed bugs or make matters worse with their actions.

You can find bed bugs in dark, damp places that are close to where you sleep. If you want to look for bed bugs at the hotel you’re staying, check the following places:

  • Beneath the bed
  • Underneath the mattress
  • Behind the baseboard and the headboard
  • Behind electrical outlets, picture frames, and moldings
  • Inside pillows and couch cushions
  • Underneath chairs, couches, and upholstery
  • On the bottom of nightstands and drawers
  • Underneath carpeting

You can never be too thorough when it comes to searching for bed bugs. Look for them before you go to bed so that you can change rooms if you need to.

What To Do After You Get Bitten

If you wake up and see bed bug bites on you, it is advised to take immediate action to have evidence of the bed bug infestation.

First, take pictures of your bites. Look in all the areas we mentioned above for bed bugs. Take pictures of everything you see. Look for any indicators of bed bugs such as bloodstains on the sheets, small white eggs, etc. Check to see if there are no bed bugs in your clothing or suitcases. You could bring them home with you if you are not careful and cause an infestation in your home.

Once you have all the evidence, contact the hotel owner or manager. Ask to file an incident report and tell them there are bed bugs in your room. It is important that you get all of the evidence before you do this because a hotel manager can simply get you out of the room and clean it and won’t let you go back in to get more evidence. 

Now, hold on to the receipt that shows you were present at the hotel. This will help prove that you are not lying.

Finally, contact an experienced bed bug lawyer in Las Vegas to handle your case. It takes a lot of experience to navigate a bed bug lawsuit against a hotel, and you may not have the legal skills to pull it off on your own. 

Suing for Negligence

Hotel owners are required to give you healthy and safe living quarters while you stay on their property. If they fail to do so, they are breaching the duty of care they owe you and can be the target of a personal injury lawsuit if you were injured in an incident inside their property. You can actually check online for bed bug hotel reports here.

In a premises liability case, you have to be able to show that the hotel owner caused the problem, knew about the problem but did nothing about it, or they should have been aware of it just as any other owner would have. 

These are the negligence points you have to show to be true:

  • You were owed a duty of care as a guest
  • There was a breach in that duty of care by allowing a bed bug infestation to settle in
  • This breach resulted in bites
  • The incident caused you physical harm

It may be difficult to prove these points on your own. This is why it is crucial to hire a skilled lawyer. At Cogburn Law, we can handle the work while you recover. You don’t have to go through any stress because of the lawsuit.

Statute of Limitations

To file a bed bug lawsuit against the responsible party you only have 2 years from the date of the incident. If you fail to take action during this time, you won’t be able to get any compensation from any future lawsuit. You have to act quickly to get the best chance at success.

There may be an exception or two to this statute of limitations. If at the time of the incident you were underage or if the responsible party left the state, this statute can temporarily be suspended until you get of age or until the defendant returns. Your attorney will be able to help you determine what you are eligible for.

Related post: 8 steps to take after a hotel injury

Filing a Bed Bug Lawsuit Near You

Our experienced attorneys at Cogburn Law have won hundreds of thousands of dollars in settlements for our clients. We will win lost wages, pain and suffering damages, property damage, and medical expenses for victims of bed bug bites in the state of Nevada. Our team is aggressive and will not stop pursuing fair compensation until they are satisfied with the settlement offered by the insurance company. For a free initial consultation call us now at (702) 747-6000

Cogburn Law has been my first experience working with a law firm. Not only did they come to my home because I was so badly bruised, but they answered every call and email in a timely fashion. When the time came to present my case, they made sure I was informed of every detail. Jamie won my case because he is an extremely talented lawyer who genuinely cares about his clients.

Jenna F.