How to Sue a Hotel for Negligence in Wisconsin
Injured in a hotel accident? Learn which types of cases win the biggest hotel injury settlements.
The statute of limitations for filing a personal injury claim in Wisconsin is three years. Act now and win.
Hotels in Janesville, Madison, Milwaukee and throughout Wisconsin may be liable for injuries suffered by guests while on the premises.
The most common causes of hotel accidents are slips, trips and falls, often in the parking lot, entrances or common areas. Slip and fall accidents can happen quickly and cause serious harm, like the $200,000 slip and fall case Steve Caya won for a client who suffered a severe knee injury.
If you’ve been injured after an accident in a hotel, you may be entitled to compensation for your medical bills, pain and suffering and more. Get a free consultation with Janesville’s leading no-win no-fee personal injury attorney to learn what your claim could be worth.
We take winning personallyReady to make them pay?
Proving Negligence in a Hotel Accident Case
In order to sue a hotel after an injury, you’ll need to prove the hotel was negligent.
Your claim must establish the hotel breached its duty owed to “invitees” (legal term for hotel guest). In general, hotels are assumed to have a duty to exercise “reasonable care” in protecting guests while operating the business.
Visitors to hotels have the right to expect that the hotel will be a reasonably safe space for them. Premises liability laws apply to determine the specific obligation that hotels have to their guests. Because guests come to hotels for the financial benefit of the hotel owners and operators, hotels owe the highest duty of care to guests — all of whom are classified as invitees.
Hotel duties include:
- Inspecting and maintaining property in “reasonably safe” condition
- Maintaining stairs, elevators, lighting and proper security measures
- Exercising “reasonable care” when hiring employees
- Controlling insect infestation (including bed bugs)
Duties can include repairing dangerous conditions (such as spilled water) or protecting guests from hazards (e.g. posting a sign if a staircase is constructed poorly or in an unusual location).
Not only must your claim establish a breach of duty, it must prove this breach directly caused the injury. The best way to find out what your hotel accident claim could be worth in a settlement (or jury verdict) is to contact a personal injury attorney with the experience and resources it takes to win the money you deserve.
Steve Caya offers free initial consultations to Wisconsin residents injured in hotels. We’ll investigate every aspect of your hotel accident and help you through the financial aspects of your case so you can focus on getting better.
How much can you get in a Wisconsin hotel injury settlement?
After hotel negligence has been established, Wisconsin premises liability law adds another factor: fault.
The amount of compensation awarded in a hotel injury claim is determined by Wisconsin Statute § 895.045, the comparative negligence statute.
The court will determine and compare the negligence of each injured claimant and the hotel (all partial negligence amounts total 100%).
What this means for your hotel negligence case:
- If you’re partially at fault for the injury, you can sue for compensation, as long as you are less at fault than the hotel
- The damages (compensation) awarded for your claim will be reduced in proportion to the amount of blame you share for the accident (if you’re found to be 25% at fault, the award amount will be reduced by 25%)
In most hotel slip and fall claims the injured person claims the hotel was at fault because of negligent design or maintaining unsafe premises. The hotel claims the injured person was at fault for causing their own accident. Winning the damages you need to become whole again likely means facing resistance from the legal team working for the hotel's insurer.
How to win a hotel negligence lawsuit
Most hotel negligence cases are hard fought. The difference between a successful and unsuccessful hotel negligence lawsuit often boils down to knowing what information matters most and what to expect from the defense lawyers arguing against you.
Steve Caya is highly skilled in accident investigation and works with a network of experts to follow all leads in injury cases, including:
- Contractual obligations for premises maintenance between the property owners and independent contractors
- Accident reports and witness statements
- The hotel’s historical record of design, construction, maintenance and safety
- Nationwide, state, local and hospitality industry standards for design, construction & maintenance of the hotel in question
- Many other facts, identities and applicable laws
If you were injured in an accident and the hotel is at fault, contact Steve Caya as soon as possible. Having an experienced trial lawyer investigate the important facts of your case is crucial in order to establish negligence and reach the settlement amount you deserve.
We take winning personallyReady to make them pay?
Hotels have to regularly inspect the premises for unsafe conditions, and hotels can be held accountable if they fail to either correct problems or warn patrons about the risks.
Any victim of an injury at a hotel should consult with a Janesville personal injury attorney to find out what options are available to them for pursuing a claim for compensation. Victims should receive payment of both economic and non-financial losses if they can prove the hotel owner or operator breached a duty and injury occurred as a direct result of that breach.
While hotel guests can be injured in many different ways when visiting a hotel, research from Cornell University reveals some of the most common reasons why hotel guests get hurt. According to the research:
- Slips, trips and falls are the top reasons for guest injuries at hotels. Slips, trips and falls in hotels caused 42 percent of all injuries occurring in a hotel setting. Slip and fall lawyers maintain that hotels could be responsible for slips and trips if there are slippery or wet floors with no warning, if there is debris in walkways or if railings or stairs are not in good condition.
- Security-related problems are the cause of 40 percent of injuries in hotels, which makes security-related issues the second leading cause of hotel guest injuries. Problems with security can result in hotel guests being victimized by acts of violence, necessitating the involvement of a premises liability lawyer. Hotels need to take reasonable precautions to prevent robberies, assault, and other aggressive and dangerous acts. The specific level of security a hotel must provide varies depending upon factors like crime rates in the area and a past history of criminal acts.
- Other causes, such as being hit by objects or defective products, are the cause of 15 percent of injuries among hotel guests. If defective products cause harm to people at hotels, the victims could pursue a claim against the hotel, as well as against product manufacturers.
- Food-borne illness is the cause of three percent of injuries and damages that affect hotel guests. When hotels serve contaminated or tainted food and guests get sick, hotels should be held responsible for their failure to ensure the food was safe.
When a hotel injury happens, victims are going to have to prove how the incident occurred and the extent of damage.
Steve Caya understands first-hand what it's like to be injured in an accident through no fault of your own and face the pain and anxiety for weeks after. He's not only a motorcycle accident lawyer and personal injury attorney representing victims across Wisconsin, he has years of experience working for insurers and knows exactly what it takes to make them pay a fair amount for injury claims.