There many hotels in this country, the vast majority of which provide a service that gives its guests, visitors and members of staff the standard of care that they are entitled to expect. Sadly, there are exceptions to this general rule and, where standards are permitted to fall, it sometimes results in an accident. In this article, we explain who is able to make a claim against a hotel for compensation arising from an accident on the premises, describe some common types of hotel claim and set out what needs to be established to succeed in such a claim.
Who can make a claim?
Claims for compensation against a hotel can be made by guests, any visitors to the premises (including those visiting to use the facilities and more formal visitors such as delivery persons) and employees of the establishment.
Common types of hotel compensation claim
There is a wide variety of circumstances in which a claim against a hotel may arise. We set out below some of those that might be considered to be the most frequently arising.
- Faulty furnishings and appliances
Many hotel accidents are caused by the hotel retaining old or damaged furniture or faulty electrical appliances such as irons, fans and hair dryers. Injuries caused can range from bruising, sprains and fractures, if, for example, a chair or bed was to collapse, to electric burns and electrocution in the event of a breakdown in an electrical appliance.
- Swimming pool accidents
Slips on wet surfaces, that cause minor injuries, are common in hotels, whilst, at the other end of the scale of seriousness, a drowning will occasionally occur.
- Slips, trips and falls
Slips on wet surfaces that have not been cordoned off or do not have any visible warning signs, trips and falls caused by obstructions left on the floor, exposed wiring, worn carpeting or an uneven floor are all relatively frequent occurrences in a hotel, giving rise to the possibility of a compensation claim.
- Food Poisoning
Possibly one of the most common causes of claims against hotels, especially where the claim arises in a foreign hotel, is a claim for compensation arising as a result of the claimant suffering from food poisoning. Ranging from mild symptoms to more severe consequences, which effectively curtail the stay in the hotel, food poisoning, caused by poorly prepared foods, unsanitary kitchen conditions and unhygienic plates and utensils, can be extremely debilitating.
- Bed bugs
Bed bug bites can be extremely itchy, irritating and painful. Sadly, the bugs can also be carried back home, resulting in a widespread household infestation.
How to make a successful claim for compensation
Hotels are under a legal obligation to keep their guests, visitors to the premises and employees safe. They need to take reasonable steps to prevent any foreseeable accident, which includes ensuring that the premises and its contents are safe, that there is a proper procedure for inspection and that their staff team operates safe and hygienic procedures. If, through its negligence, a person suffers a personal injury, a claim can be made against the hotel. If you have a potential claim for compensation against a hotel, this should be made within three years of the incident giving rise to the claim and you should seek the advice of an experienced personal injury lawyer well before the expiry of that time limit.