According to bed bug attorney Jeffrey M. Lipman, the mere existence of a bed bug should, in most cases, not be enough to impose liability. Yet, while there are no consistent pieces of legislation to govern situations that involve bed bugs, that should not be misinterpreted as lack of laws or liability.
So, can you be sued? Of course you can.
We live in a litigious society, and lawsuits are frequently brought against hotels, both the corporate entity and the individual property owner. Verdicts of $500,000 have been awarded, and legal fees can easily hit $30,000 to defend a hotel against bed bug litigation.
That said, there are steps hotels can take to significantly decrease liability. One thing we know for sure is you can’t just say, “We hired a pest control professional to handle it.”
Here are a few action steps to protect your business:
- Implement a documentation system with response protocols. A paper trail is key to demonstrating you took proactive measures.
- Hire a pest management professional (PMP) to train maintenance and housekeeping staff to perform frequent room and common-area inspections. If bed bugs are discovered by hotel staff, it is essential the inspection is followed by an immediate response from the PMP.
- Contract periodic inspections by a PMP for quality assurance.
- Install active mattress liners such as ActiveGuard Mattress Liners, which prevent bed bug infestations for two years.
- Ask your PMP about using perimeter insecticidal dusts in hallways and rooms as a line of defense.
- Consider the use of mattress encasements to protect the capital asset against fluids and stains.
As noted above, a field-proven bed bug prevention program with active mattress liners installed on mattresses or box springs is proof you did all you could to prevent bed bugs. This program can prevent a bed bug incident from turning into an expensive, litigious situation.
Learn more about bed bug prevention in hotels and how you can avoid being the subject of the next negative review on Trip Advisor during a free one-on-one webinar. Or call 1-866-978-6288 to secure your hotel with the ultimate in bed bug prevention.
About Allergy Technologies
ActiveGuard Mattress Liners kill bed bugs. Easily installed on mattresses or box springs, these liners offer two-year continual prevention and control against any adult bed bugs, nymphs or eggs. ActiveGuard has no cautionary signal words or use restrictions on its label. Only four sizes—single/twin, double/full, queen and king—fit almost every available mattress or box spring and accommodate up to extra-large in length and 17-in. in depth. Underlying is ActiveGuard’s formulation: a unique and proprietary delivery system that offers sustained bioavailability of permethrin for two years. Newest research supports that after a short exposure to ActiveGuard of only 10 minutes, bed bugs, regardless of their level of resistance, begin to show significant reductions in feeding (biting) and a dramatic inability to lay eggs. This results in discontinuation of population growth thereby halting progression of an incident to an infestation. If you are seeking a proactive preventative approach, ActiveGuard should be considered as the centerpiece of your long-term solution to keep bedding from being infested. ActiveGuard Mattress Liners are covered under U.S. Patents 5,916,580, 6,214,365, 6,440,438 and pending patents.
For more tips on preventing bed bugs and uncovering infestations early, visit us online at www.hotelbedbugprevention.com.