Being bitten by bed bugs is nothing short of a nightmare.
Infestations can turn your life upside down, and lead to significant losses.
Common casualties bed bug victims experience include:
Physical injury, pain & suffering, lost wages, and damaged belongings.
(among many others)
Unfortunately, bed bugs have made a comeback since the late 20th century, and infestations are worse than ever.
If you have fallen victim to a bed bug infestation due to someone else’s negligence…
You MAY be able to file a lawsuit against them.
However, taking legal action may not lead to positive results for you, because every bed bug case is different.
This is simply because….
There are several factors that go into the equation of determining the value of a bed bug lawsuit.
So let’s take a look at ways to calculate the amount of money you could get from a bed bug settlement.
5 Key Factors for Determining the Value of a Bed Bug Lawsuit (Plus 1 Bonus)
The Number of Bed Bug Bites
This is important because a couple of bites don’t prove that bed bugs did indeed bite you.
You’ll need more evidence than that.
To build your case and ensure you didn’t mistaken bed bugs for similar insects….
You should do your research.
Ensure that you fully understand and can speak to what bed bug bites look like.
Then compare your knowledge with the bites on your body.
If you have suffered a high volume of bites , this should increase the likely value of your compensation.
If you happen to have more than 50 bites on your body, this could help you prove that:
These little pests were residing for a long time in the place in question.
If your bites can prove that bed bugs existed before you arrived:
You’re in a good spot.
The Severity of the Physical Reaction
Bed bug bites can lead to a variety of health issues…
If you experience an adverse reaction or more serious health problem due to bed bug bites.
This could increase the value of your case.
To determine this….
You should ask yourself these questions:
Have I suffered bed bug bites with blisters?
Have I gotten Hives, or a rash as a result of my bites?
Have I developed a fever?
Did I have to a go to a hospital as a result of my injuries?
Did I have to deal with any kind of allergic reaction?
Did the bites leave me with keloid scars? (scar marks that can can only be removed with cosmetic surgery)
If you answered yes to any of these questions, your chances are greater that you have a case to sue.
The circumstances and severity of your injuries play a major part in evaluating your bed bug settlement value.
The Financial Losses
The financial burden of a bed bug infestation can sometimes be overwhelming.
The following are common expenses you may endure as a result of an infestation.
- Medical Expenses – Hospital receipts, cost of medication etc.
- Lost Wages – Lost income due to time off work (spent recovering or dealing with treatment)
- Removal – The costs of hiring a professional pest control service to eliminate the bed bugs.
- Damaged Furniture – The costs of repairing the damage of fumigating your personal belongings (or replacing them entirely)
- Emotional Damage – Including any mental or psychological issues experienced as a result of bed bugs.
The extent of the financial losses you experienced will have a direct effect on the value of your potential settlement.
The Conduct of the Negligent Party
The degree of negligence occurred can make or break your case for a lawsuit.
The way the negligent party behaved regarding their property’s bed bug infestation is one of the most crucial factors for estimating the proper value of your bed bug lawsuit.
Whether it be hotel management or your landlord..
If the property owner was fully aware of the infestation and did absolutely nothing to resolve it:
You could prove their liability in court.
In some cases it may not be negligence due to inaction but rather negligence of disclosing an existing or previous infestation.
In some cities like Chicago, property owners are required to disclose an infestation to new tenants.
But what if the property owner did try and resolve the problem, but didn’t take proper measures because they were looking to save money?
There is no “A” for effort in this case.
If the infestation was improperly addressed it’s as if the problem wasn’t addressed at all.
5. Pain and Suffering
Suffering is considered part of the non-monetary damages that occurred as a result of a bed bug infestation.
This can include the following:
- Stress and anxiety
- A constant fear of infestation recurrence
- Disturbed sleep
- Social isolation (because of the stigma associated with bed bugs).
6. (Bonus Factor) Punitive Damages
Punitive damages, or exemplary damages, also have to do with conduct.
If the responsible party was causing harm purposefully, these damages could serve to punish them or deter them from ever engaging in similar actions again.
Check out the video below for more information on Punitive Damages.
In instances of gross negligence or severe neglect, you could receive additional compensation for punitive damages.
What Is the Average Value of a Bed Bug Settlement?
Now it’s time to talk numbers.
As already mentioned, the value of your settlement will depend on the aforementioned factors.
Nonetheless, here are a few common cases to give you a clearer picture of how much compensation you may get if you have a strong case.
If you suffered something like 100 bed bug bites after moving into a new apartment, and you complained to property management, who did nothing to resolve the issue, you could potentially receive a $200,000 settlement.
If you stayed in an apartment with your family and suffered bed bug bites that resulted in all of you suffering multiple injuries…
Including permanent keloid scars, you could potentially get a settlement of $1,500,000.
Hotel Bed Bug Settlements (Examples)
In this case a couple went to San Francisco on their honeymoon in April 2019. After a long day of sightseeing they went to sleep at their affordable hotel just outside of downtown. In the morning the husband awoke to over 50 bites on his body.
The husband had a pre-existing skin condition which caused the bites to balloon to over 3 inches in diameter. This required multiple hospital visits and the man lost his job as a result.
A family of 4 recently moved into their apartment on the north east side of Chicago. After about 3 weeks the twin boys began receiving bites on their face and neck.
The family did everything they could to report the situation to their landlord.
(They even wrote a demand letter)
But the landlord refused to take responsibility. The two boys have since dealt with significant scarring that has altered their appearances.
(and one of them developed severe anxiety as a result).
Below is a report from San Diego News about a woman who sued a Las Vegas hotel for bed bugs.
So How Much is My Bed Bug Lawsuit Worth?
The first step in determining the value of your case is to get connected with a lawyer.
A licensed personal injury attorney will walk you through next steps, and tell you how to build a potential lawsuit.
We’ll connect you with an attorney who will provide you with the necessary assistance for evaluating your case.
If you’ve experienced a problem with a bed bug infestation, where the responsible party was the owner of your residential home, hotel, or any other property, we’re here for you.
Get in touch today for a FREE CONSULTATION.
(Absolutely zero fees unless you win your case)
For more detail and an updated version of this post, go ahead and check out the 2020 Average Bed Bug Settlement Value.