The COVID-19/coronavirus pandemic brought with it new risks, problems and questions. The world has had to adapt swiftly to a constantly evolving situation. No industry was left unaffected, including the legal sector. Personal injury law responded by offering the opportunity to file injury cases for COVID-19-related losses, in some circumstances. Find out if you have grounds for a personal injury claim during a free consultation with a lawyer in Texas.
Contracting the coronavirus in itself will not constitute grounds for a personal injury claim. You will need proof that someone was negligent and that this is why you contracted the virus. A common example is contracting COVID-19 at work. Your employer has a legal responsibility to keep you reasonably safe from injuries and illnesses, including the coronavirus.
If your employer negligently failed to keep you safe, such as by forcing you to return to work without taking the proper precautions or sanitary measures, you could have grounds for a claim against your employer for contracting the virus. You may be eligible for workers’ compensation in Texas, or else be able to bring an injury claim against the company.
Information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says that cruise ships are more likely to transmit COVID-19 than most other settings due to the enclosed spaces, dense populations and close living situations. Furthermore, the CDC says that decreasing populations onboard cruise ships without taking other mitigation measures will not protect passengers. If you were a passenger or crewmember on a cruise ship when you contacted COVID-19, you may have grounds for a negligence claim against the cruise line for failing to take proper precautions in preventing the illness.
Most hospitals and health care workers have done their best to stop the spread of COVID-19 and care for infected patients. Some facilities, however, have not taken the proper steps to ensure patient care or protection. Medical malpractice such as failing to maintain a safe premises, lack of sanitation protocols and lack of proper employee training could lead to hazards for patients, such as a higher risk of COVID-19 transmission. If you suffered adverse health complications or lost a loved one due to medical malpractice during the pandemic, you may have grounds for a claim against the health care center or emergency room.
The elderly are especially vulnerable to COVID-19. They have the highest odds of developing severe and life-threatening symptoms. It is especially important during this time for nursing homes to take care of their residents. Nursing homes must take reasonable steps to prevent disease transmission, such as hand-washing stations, staff member training, premises sanitation and quarantining residents when necessary. If a nursing home failed to properly care for its residents and this led to your loved one’s illness or death related to COVID-19, you may have grounds to bring a claim against the nursing home in Texas.
If you believe you can file a personal injury claim for COVID-19, contact a personal injury lawyer right away for legal assistance. The pandemic has impacted normal legal processes. You may have to file online, for example, rather than submitting your claim to a courthouse directly. Your case may take longer to resolve due to backups in your city’s court system. You may also need to wait longer to file if your medical treatment or surgery has been delayed due to the virus. Note that some states have tolled personal injury statutes of limitations, while others have not. In Texas, the Supreme Court ordered the suspension of some time limits for lawsuits. Contact an attorney as soon as possible to find out how COVID-19 might affect your case.