How to pursue a personal injury claim if you were injured in a Las Vegas hotel
Las Vegas is known for its world-class casinos and hotels that attract visitors from all over the world. In some cases, hotel management and staff fail to provide proper maintenance and address certain hazards. Those who own and manage Las Vegas hotels can be held accountable when someone is injured because of their negligence.
Some examples of incidents we see at Lasso Injury Law LLC that lead to injuries include:
- Slip, trip and fall accidents. These are usually caused by slippery floor surfaces, uneven surfaces, unsecured rugs, and debris left in walking areas. Slip and falls are also common around hotel pools and on stairs.
- Violent assaults. Hotel management is expected to protect visitors by providing adequate security, surveillance cameras, and proper lighting in common walking areas. They must also ensure that all rooms have properly working locks. Violent assaults are often the result of fights, robberies, sexual assault, or senseless violence.
- Electrocutions or burns. Broken or poorly maintained power outlets and poor wiring is often to blame for these injuries. In 2018, a 6-year-old girl was electrocuted after touching a handrail at an MGM resort in Baltimore. She suffered brain damage as a result.
What duty do hotels have to guests?
The guests who visit and stay at Las Vegas hotels are considered "invitees" under premises liability law. An invitee is any member of the public who legally accesses a property for business or public use. They also have the highest level of protection under the law in comparison to licensees (someone who performs work on the property) and trespassers.
Hotel owners and managers have an obligation to operate a facility in a way that is reasonable and safe for visitors. This includes, but is not limited to:
- Regularly maintaining and inspecting the property.
- Promptly addressing dangerous conditions that can hurt guests and making repairs as needed.
- Ensuring that hotel staff are properly screened and trained.
- Providing adequate protection for guests in lobbies, walking areas, rooms, and other areas of a hotel.
- Ensuring that pools and gyms are adequately staffed with employees who are trained to prevent accidents and/or address injuries.
- Quickly addressing spilled liquids and other slipping hazards by placing warning signs and removing the hazard.
Establishing negligence after a hotel injury
Hotels breach their duty of care to guests when they fail to take the right precautions. If you were injured while visiting a Las Vegas hotel, negligence must be established before you can take legal action against the defendant.
Common hotel injuries include:
- Traumatic brain injury or concussion
- Bone fracture
- Neck, back, or spine injury
- Cuts, burns, bruises, or contusions
- Knee injury
- Soft tissue injuries
- Any other serious injury that requires hospitalization, surgery, or a medical procedure
Your injuries likely resulted in hospital bills and time away from work, as well as future medical costs (usually surgery, medication, and/or physical therapy). Moreover, you're likely dealing with pain and suffering and possibly trauma as a result of your injuries.
Now we need to established two things:
- The hotel breached its duty of care. The hazard must have been present long enough that it should have been known about or was created by the hotel staff.
- Your injuries were the direct cause of the hotel owner or manager's negligence.
An in-depth investigation needs to be conducted to establish this. An experienced personal injury lawyer can help you build a strong premises liability case by:
- Interviewing witnesses and asking them what they saw.
- Reviewing the incident report.
- Obtaining video footage from nearby surveillance cameras.
- Examining the location where your injury occurred to look for lack of maintenance, defects, and other evidence to support your claim
Without the right evidence, the hotel owner or management can take advantage of Nevada's comparative negligence rule by arguing that you were partially at fault. If you're found to be more than 50% responsible for your injury, you will be barred from recovering damages from the defendant.
What to do after getting hurt at a hotel
The first thing you should do is document the incident and report it to management. Be sure to take pictures of the area where the incident occurred and note the date, time, and location. That way, you have the details documented while the evidence is fresh. You should also fill out an incident report with the hotel so that it's documented on their end as well. If there are any witnesses nearby, be sure to ask them what they saw and take down their contact information. In many cases, witnesses will stop to help you.
Next, you should see a doctor as soon as possible. Never try to "walk off" an injury, no matter how minor it seems. Delaying medical treatment can also hurt your chances of recovering damages from the defendant. The insurance companies and their lawyers can argue that your injuries were pre-existing and had nothing to do with the incident. Be sure to get a clear diagnosis of your injuries and documentation of your medical evaluation.
Lastly, speak to an experienced personal injury lawyer at Lasso Injury Law LLC to discuss your legal options during a free consultation. The statute of limitations to pursue a personal injury claim in Nevada is two years, so you must act fast. Contact our law firm online or call us right now to get started.