Updated: February 3, 2021

Bed bug bites are potentially serious and can cause a combination of mental, physical, and emotional distress…

Along with financial problems resulting from medical expenses and lost income.

Subsequently, bed bug injuries can warrant a lawsuit….

Therefore you could receive compensation for all of these damages with the help of a qualified bed bug attorney.

Hotel owners and management staff may be found negligent in the event of an infestation affecting you or a loved one.

This leads to the question… Can you sue for bed bugs?

In this article we will answer that very question.

On that note… let’s dive in. 

Can I Sue a Hotel For Bed Bugs?

Yes. You can absolutely sue a hotel for a bed bug infestation. Depending on the situation and the degree of losses suffered you may be able to sue for damages. The amount of compensation you receive will depend on a variety of factors. 

How Much Can You Sue For Bed Bugs?

After being exposed to a bed bug infestation, it’s normal to want more detail on the amount of money you’re eligible to receive as a result of your injury.

Bed bug lawsuits vary significantly from claim to claim, as the lawsuit amount can range from either thousands, or in some cases, millions of dollars.

The dollar value of the claim depends on the amount of losses you experienced as a result of the infestation.

Let’s look at a few examples below:

Settlement of $35,000The victim stayed at a 3-star hotel for an extended stay. After a week, she suspected the common living areas were infested with bed bugs, and informed management immediately. It took over two months for the problem to be addresses by hotel management, and during that time, the victim and multiple other guests experienced injuries of differing severity.

Settlement of $250,000 – A family of four moved into a duplex in Miami. The landlord failed to inform them that the unit downstairs had experienced a bed bug infestation in the past – and bed bugs were still living in the walls. After a few weeks of staying in their new home, the two sons were bitten badly, and one of them experienced serious scarring as a result of his injuries.

It’s essential that you build evidence in order to have a successful claim. For more information on the average value of a bed bug lawsuit you can view the below resources:

2020 Average Bed Bug Lawsuit Value

2019 Average Bed Bug Settlement

Are Hotels Liable for Bed Bugs?

If an infestation occurs in a hotel, it might result from owners’ or management’s neglect in certain cases.

If hotel staff, management or owners fail…

to take sufficient preventative measures to avoid an infestation and it causes harm to guests, they may be held liable and required to pay compensation for damages suffered.

One thing to note:

Proving negligence is not easy.

The burden is usually on you as the hotel guest. Therefore it’s important to gather evidence (discussed later in this article) to build your case.

You should also talk to a lawyer to discuss your options. Bed bug laws and regulation differ by state, and a local lawyer can help walk you through next steps.

How Do Hotels Prevent Bed Bugs?

Normally, hotels shouldn’t experience problems with bed bugs…

Staff are required to properly maintain all hotel rooms, bedding, and other areas that minimize the risk of an infestation.

However, in certain cases hotel staff may be negligent to the point where an infestation occurs, resulting in injuries to the guests.

Poorly maintained hotels will be more likely to experience an infestation.

This does not mean that these pests don’t infest 5 star luxury hotels, but nicer, well organized hotels are usually more responsive so the infestation doesn’t spread quickly.

I Found Bed Bugs in My Hotel.. Now What?

If you suspect that there’s an active infestation in your hotel, you should take the following steps:

  • Seek Medical Attention – If your injuries seem severe, you’ll want to get the bites checked out by a health professional.
  • Identify the Infestation – Property diagnose the infestation to ensure you’re not mistaking bed bugs with similar insects.
  • Gather Evidence – Take pictures of your bites and any bugs that you can find. Try and get the room in the background and even proof of date if possible.
  • Report the Infestation – Contact hotel management and staff to ensure they’re aware of the infestation. Document the conversation if you can.
  • Talk to a Lawyer – You’ll want to talk to a licensed attorney who understands local laws and ordinances. Get connected with a lawyer in your area to discuss whether you’re eligible for potential compensation.

Can You Bring Bed Bugs Home from a Hotel?

The short answer is yes…

You can bring bed bugs home with you. These insects are excellent hitchhikers, and will attach themselves to your belongings, clothes, or your body.

Here are a few tips to ensure you don’t bring bed bugs home:

Keep Suitcases off the Floor: Keep your suitcase away from the bedroom. No need to go crazy and put your suitcase in the bathtub, but a dedicated storage area may be better than by your bed.

Unpack Immediately: Unpack and Wash/Dry your clothes on high heat just in case you brought back any unwanted guests that you might not have noticed.

Reduce Clutter: Though keeping your living area clean doesn’t technically prevent an infestation, it can still help you spot the first sign of bed bugs more quickly.

How Common Are Bed Bugs in Hotels?

As bed bug infestations continue to grow across the country, travelers are growing more and more weary of staying in hotels. 

Hotels were devastated by the 2020 coronavirus, but bed bugs are quietly causing the hotel industry some anxiety as well.

According to travelpulse.com hotels faces an average of 7.1 bed bug incidents every 5 years.

This costs hoteliers more than $160,000 on average.

Let’s look at some more statistics:

The top three places bed bugs are found are…

  1. Single Family Homes (38%)
  2. Apartments & Condos (32%)
  3. Hotels/Motels (25%)
  4. Other (5%)

One out of 5 Americans either directly experienced, or know someone who’s experienced a bed bug infestation in their hotel.

Different Types of Compensation

There are multiple types of compensation that injured parties can receive, including recovered damages for financial loss and more.

An experienced and knowledgeable personal injury lawyer will be able to go over the various aspects of possible compensation with you.

Get your free consultation to get connected with a lawyer who can help.  

The types of recoverable compensation could include:

  • Damage to property, including items discarded in the process of eliminating bed bugs and preventing them from spreading
  • Lost wages resulting from missed time at work
  • Pain and suffering
  • Emotional distress and trauma, including any lack of sleep resulting from fear of future infestations
  • The cost of ruined vacation
  • Permanent scarring or disfigurement from bites.

Speak with an Attorney 

Bed bug infestations may be the result of negligence, which is why bed bug bite attorneys are available to provide representation and could help you seek compensation.

Consult with an attorney to determine if you have a case today, and an experienced lawyer may help you recover damages for your injuries.

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Date Published: 2019-02-25

Written By Robert Brown

I'm a seasoned pest control veteran. I focus my time on writing educational content about the industry and helping people learn about indoor insects. When I'm not thinking about bed bugs I am spending time with my daughters or walking the dog.

This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. Billy Key

    IMy fiance and I stayed at Quality inn at Brookhaven Ms.and got eat up by bed bugs , we asked to change rooms an they wouldn’t allow us to change an we were eat up by bed bugs an brought them to our home. We have had to burn everything in our home including a new Memory king size foam all our furniture ? Pull up carpet an replaced with wood flooring
    . All our clothes and vehicles detailed .. I’ve missed a month of work an she’s missed 2 months.. We are both disfigured very bad..

  2. Billy Key

    I want something done due to straight up negligence.. We asked plainly to change rooms an was told No

    We have pictures of the bed an sheets,, they were infested with bed bugs an towels were to, an there were colonies of thousands gathered on floor walls an carpet . It was a nightmare an 3 months later we still have them in our home after professional exterminators. Our faces an entire bodies are so scarred up it’s so embarrassing out in public? And my wife just cries her eyes out.. I WANT JUSTICE…..

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