Bed Bug Injury Settlement $155,000
Just prior to a jury trial scheduled in the Anne Arundel County Circuit Court, a bed bug case by a tenant against the former Owner and Agent of the Spa Cove Apartment Community in Annapolis, Maryland agreed to a $155,000 settlement for our client’s bed bug injury claims. The settlement disputes liability. On move in, our client, a 34-year-old certified orthotist and pediatric specialist, was provided a Bed Bug Addendum to the Lease which stated that the apartment had been inspected, and that the Owner/Agent knew of no bed bug infestation. An accompanying pamphlet provided by the Owner/Agent stressed that bed bugs, if sighted, require immediate treatment, and that if ignored, the infestation will become more severe. Nonetheless, our client began to find bed bugs after moving in, and sustained bed bug injuries, which led her to find Whitney, LLP’s Annapolis bed bug attorneys.
Find Bed Bugs After Moving In
After several weeks she started waking up with itchy bites, and then woke up one night to find four bed bugs crawling on a bedroom wall. She emailed to the property manager date and time-stamped photos of the bed bugs and photos of her bites. She also captured bed bugs and placed them in a container to show them to the pest control inspector. Our Annapolis bed bug attorneys would eventually use the photographs our client took to help prove her case and maximize her compensation.
Property Manager Agreed to Treatment
The Spa Cove Apartment property manager agreed to arrange extermination through its pest control contractor, Orkin. It turns out that Orkin only treated the apartment for ants, crickets and cockroaches, but not for bed bugs. Our client was not aware that only a general pest control treatment was performed, and continued to sustain bites and see bed bugs throughout the apartment. She reported this to the property manager who assured her it would take time for the Orkin treatment to work. Supposedly, a second bed bug treatment was performed by Orkin. Nonetheless, she continued to find bed bugs after moving in.
The Apartment Was Not Inspected or Treated for Bed Bugs
After suit was filed, we established that the Owner/Agent had no evidence that a bed bug inspection was performed prior to leasing the apartment. Also, astoundingly, we found out that Orkin had not been contracted to inspect and treat the apartment for bed bugs.
Bed Bug Injury and Ordeal
Our client sustained many bed bug injuries including itchy skin lesions and long-term hyperpigmentation, and was treated by a dermatologist. She was led to believe that Orkin sprayed for bed bugs in her apartment, yet continued to get new bites and continually spotted bed bugs. She resorted to various forms of self-help including over-the-counter bed bug spray, diatomaceous earth, bed bug traps, bed bug interceptors for her bed frame, and bed bug encasements for her mattress and box spring; and endured these deplorable conditions for 7 months while the Spa Cove apartments in Annapolis were owned by Defendant Lexin Spa Cove Owner, LLC and operated by Lexin Realty, LLC (until February 27, 2019) (collectively “Lexin”).
Legal Theories of Liability
Plaintiff’s claims against Lexin were based on allegations of negligence, fraud and violation of Maryland’s Consumer Protection Act. Defendants agreed to pay the $155,000 but denied liability.
Lexin Blamed Orkin
Lexin blamed Orkin, but Lexin’s claim against Orkin was dismissed by the Court, and we did not file suit against Orkin in this case.
Annapolis Bed Bug Attorney
Whitney, LLP’s bed bug attorneys have represented hundreds of clients across Maryland and have recovered millions of dollars for our clients in bed bug injury claims, including numerous clients in the Annapolis area. We previously recovered $100,000 in a jury verdict in a bed bug injury claim for a guest of the Red Roof Inn in Oxon Hill, Md.
Apartment tenants, hotel guests and vacation rental guests are entitled to a safe, clean and sanitary dwelling, free of infestation. However, when placed in a bed bug infestation, and after suffering a bed bug injury, legal claims can be brought to recover compensation.
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