What Types of Lawsuits Might Come From COVID-19 Exposure?
On top of the many physical and emotional concerns regarding the COVID-19/coronavirus pandemic are also legal issues. People from all over the world are filing COVID-19 lawsuits concerning travel and entertainment refunds, failed business contracts, employment issues, business interruptions, medical negligence, pandemic avoidance, and more. If you believe you have a lawsuit or class action related to COVID-19 exposure, contact a Boston personal injury lawyer right away for a free consultation.
Business and Product Claims
The pandemic hit businesses hard. Mandated closures of nonessential businesses, social distancing rules, municipal stay-at-home orders and workers trying to work from home have forced many businesses to close their doors permanently. Others are struggling to remain in business by adapting to COVID-19 policies. In light of the many issues businesses are facing during the pandemic, this is a significant practice area for lawsuits.
- Business interruption insurance. Many businesses have significant income losses due to forced closures from COVID-19. Business owners have tried to file interruption insurance claims only to receive denials based on virus exclusions or other loopholes. These business owners may need to file lawsuits to receive fair insurance coverage instead.
- Failed service contracts. People who had contracts with dealers, vendors and service providers may have to file lawsuits to get their money back or come to other resolutions if the provider could not fulfill his or her end of the contract due to the coronavirus.
- Price gouging lawsuits. Many consumers have filed lawsuits against companies such as Amazon, Walmart, Costco, Albertsons, Quality King and eBay for price gouging during COVID-19. Price gouging, increasing prices on high-demand items, is against the law during an emergency declaration. It is also grossly unconscionable for businesses to take advantage of the public’s fear of the pandemic.
- False advertising lawsuits. Other businesses are facing lawsuits alleging false advertising. Some companies claimed to have germ-killing hand sanitizers, virus-blocking masks and even a cure for COVID-19 without evidence supporting these claims. This led to many consumers bringing false advertising claims.
The pandemic has led to many legal problems for businesses, from losses of income during quarantine to false advertising lawsuits against them. Both consumers and business owners need to protect their rights during the novel coronavirus by hiring attorneys to help them through the legal process on business claims.
Workers’ Compensation Claims
Thousands of employees have filed workers’ compensation claims for contracting COVID-19 on the job. Each state is handling these claims differently. In Massachusetts, the Attorney General’s Office ruled the state would accept workers’ compensation claims if the employee was in an industry or job that inherently put him or her at a high risk of COVID-19 exposure. Physicians and nurses in coronavirus wings, for example, could qualify for workers’ compensation benefits if they contract the virus from contact with patients on the job. If the Massachusetts Workers’ Compensation Advisory Council unfairly denies a COVID-19 workers’ comp claim, the employee may need to file a lawsuit instead.
Personal Injury and Wrongful Death Lawsuits
Other lawsuits are seeking money damages for negligence in connection to COVID-19 exposure. If an employer was negligent in exposing workers to an unreasonably high risk of illness, for example, an ill employee may be able to bring a claim to damages based on negligence. Any breach of the duty of care that led to someone contracting the virus could give grounds for a personal injury claim. If the victim did not survive the illness, his or her loved ones may be able to file a wrongful death claim against the at-fault party instead. Speak to an attorney in Boston as soon as possible if you think you have any type of lawsuit connected to the coronavirus. One or more parties may owe you compensation.