Daytona personal injury lawyers from Zimmet & Zimmet see hundreds of people who have visited the Sunshine State with hopes of fun and excitement, only to wind up with an injury due to someone’s negligence at a hotel or resort. Not only is this disappointing for a trip you may have planned for months, but it can also leave you with serious injuries, significant medical costs, and the stress of figuring out how to handle the situation.
We are ready to help you fight for justice, which often includes holding the negligent party responsible for your accident and related costs. With millions of people visiting the state each year, these types of incidents are more common than you may realize. Here you can learn more about some of the most common causes of hotel and resort accidents and injuries in Florida and how our legal team can help you recover the compensation you deserve.
Common Accidents in Florida Hotels and Resorts
Some of the most common accidents that occur in Florida hotels and resorts include:
Slips and Falls
The employees at a hotel or resort are usually responsible for keeping high-traffic areas (i.e., hallways, sidewalks, steps, etc.) free of debris, well-lit, and dry. Failure to do this means that these areas would be unsafe and need warning signs to protect those using the area.
However, since many hotels and resorts stay busy, it may not be possible to fix dangerous situations before they create a risk for guests. Because of this, slip-and-fall accidents are some of the most common incidents seen at Florida hotels and resorts.
Some hotels, especially in Florida, have luxurious pools and hot tubs designed for guest relaxation. It’s required that all water areas remain clean and safe, which includes:
- Water is chemically balanced and sanitary
- Proper water temperatures in hot tubs
- Clean walking surfaces
- Warning signs and rules posted in visible areas
Even though these things are required, accidents still happen, including life-threatening and even fatal drownings.
Even though a hotel or resort may not seem like a setting where burns would occur, this isn’t always the case. In fact, this is a painful injury that is more common than you may realize. Some of the common causes of burn injuries include scalding water from a sink or shower, hot tubs that are overheated, and appliances that aren’t functioning properly, such as irons, coffee machines, hairdryers, and more.
When you stay in a hotel or resort, the last thing you want to deal with is insect infestations or other types of contaminants in your room. Unfortunately, bed bugs and other critters can happen. Bed bugs can be found in a hotel or resort’s furniture, linens, or bedding. Even when their presence is known, getting rid of them is difficult.
Injuries Due to Criminal Acts
Along with taking steps to prevent accidents, resorts and hotels must implement reasonable security measures to help prevent criminal acts like theft, battery, and assault. One example is ensuring their employees are properly screened, the common areas are well-lit, and the locks on the doors and windows function properly. It’s also not allowed for employees to provide a hotel room number to anyone but the guest who is staying there. If the hotel staff and owners don’t take these steps, it may be possible to file a negligent security claim against the hotel or resort.
Obligations of Florida Resort and Hotel Owners
Hotels and resorts in Florida are legally obligated to ensure all guests remain safe from harm. If an owner does not fulfill this obligation and a guest is injured, it can result in a personal injury or premises liability lawsuit. Because of this, hotel and resort owners must avoid causing intentional harm to guests and ensure the property is always safe from all types of dangers.
If an owner or staff member is aware of a possible hazard and doesn’t fix the situation or provide a warning in an appropriate or timely manner, then they can be held liable for the injuries a guest sustains due to this negligence.
If a hotel or resort owner deviates from the standard of care they owe their guests, by omission or act, they may be liable for negligence. To prove negligence in this type of case, there are three things you must prove:
- The hotel or resort owner owed the guest a legal duty of care.
- The legal duty of care the hotel or resort owner owed a guest was breached.
- The breach that occurred resulted in the guest experiencing damages.
If the legal system determines that the hotel or resort was negligent, you may be entitled to two different types of damages – compensatory and/or punitive. There are two types of compensatory damages – monetary and nonmonetary.
Monetary damages in these cases include:
- Current and future medical costs
- Current and future lost earnings
- Household services
- Vocational rehabilitation costs
- Wrongful death damages
It’s more difficult to prove and calculate non monetary damages; however, they can still be recovered. Common examples of non monetary damages include:
- Loss of consortium
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Emotional distress
- Pain and suffering
The court system only awards punitive damages if they discover a defendant’s actions were outrageous or egregious to the point that it is shocking. The purpose of this damage category is to make an example of the defendant and to deter others from doing similar things in the future. In the state of Florida, there is a cap on the total amount of punitive damages that are awarded in personal injury cases. The plaintiff may receive up to three times the total amount of compensatory damages they were awarded or a total of $500,000 (the greater of the two is used).
Potential Damages You Can Collect for Hotel and Resort Related Injuries in Florida
It’s possible, in some situations, to recover compensation for your injuries and damages in a hotel or resort accident. This would be the case if the owner’s negligence caused the accident. It’s also possible to recover compensation for medical costs and care, any lost wages due to time away from work, and pain and suffering caused by the accident.
It’s smart to get in touch with our legal team if you find yourself in these situations. We can help you with your case, whether you are returning to a different state after your Florida vacation.
Do You Have a Claim Against a Florida Hotel or Resort?
Sometimes, claims filed against a Florida hotel or resort will be considered a premises liability case. This means the property owner was responsible for maintaining the premises to ensure guest safety. If your injury occurred because of unsafe conditions or because of some other problem with the property, it might be possible to pursue a claim for premises liability.
It doesn’t matter what type of claim you pursue; you may be able to recover full compensation for the injuries you suffered. Hiring our legal team is smart, as we can help you with your claim and each step of the legal process.
Don’t Wait to Contact Our Personal Injury Lawyers for Assistance
You have rights if you are injured at a Florida resort or hotel. At Zimmet & Zimmet, we provide legal assistance to those who find themselves in these situations. Get in touch with our legal team to discuss your case by scheduling a free initial consultation.