Do we have a case against a motel for an injury suffered at its swimming pool?
Question Details: My 7 year old son and 15 year old daughter were in our hotel swimming pool while on vacation. My son was outside the pool and my daughter was inside. They were hitting a beach ball back and forth to each other. The ball hit a light fixture hanging on the wall and the glass from the fixture shattered. The glass sliced my 7 year olds should down to his shoulder blade. 911 was called and we went to the emergency room for him to be stitched up. He had to get 17 stitches total. The next morning we went to get a copy of the accident report and the first thing the general manager said was that he reviewed the video and that our son was unsupervised. My husband said no, our 15 year old was with him. He then said, the girl is the one who hit the ball. At that point we just left. We feel there should not have been fixtures that have risk of shattering in a pool area. They gave us the accident report, however 4 days later and we still do not have a case number. We have pictures of the lights, and of my son's wound.
The motel is liable for your son's injury based on premises liability.
Prior to filing a lawsuit against the motel, it may be possible to settle the case with the motel's insurance carrier.
When your son completes his medical treatment and is released, obtain his medical bills and medical reports. Your son's claim filed with the motel's insurance company should include those items.
Compensation for the medical bills is straight reimbursement. The medical reports document your son's injuries and are used to determine compensation for pain and suffering, which is an amount in addition to the medical bills.
If the case is settled with the motel's insurance company, no lawsuit is filed.
If you are dissatisfied with the settlement offers, reject them and file a lawsuit against the motel based on premises liability. You will need to be appointed guardian ad litem to file a lawsuit on behalf of your son because he is a minor.
If the case is not settled, the lawsuit against the motel must be filed prior to the expiration of the applicable statute of limitations or your son will lose his rights forever in the matter.