Who to sue ? It may NOT be who you think in a hotel injury case !

Doug Landau, shown here after racing in Connecticut  last week, travels frequently. However, as much as he enjoys racing, he knows that running around at "the 24th hour" trying to ascertain the correct identities of defendants, is no fun when the rights of injured victims are at stake.
Doug Landau, shown here after another successful race in Connecticut last week, travels frequently and stays in national chain hotels all over he country. However, as much as he enjoys racing, he knows that running around at “the 24th hour” trying to ascertain the correct identities of defendants, witnesses and corporations is no fun when strict court deadlines and the rights of innocent injured victims are at stake.

A new lawyer is about to file suit on behalf of an injured guest who had slipped and fallen at an “Inn & Suites Hotel.” This hotel has the signs and logo of a national chain, and appears to be run by a local franchisee. However the property is owned by “Company A”, the facility is managed by “Company B” and the building itself is owned by “Company C” and the new lawyer does not who to name as the corporate defendant. With the time running out to file the case, the injured victim’s counsel is running out of options, and the insurance adjuster will not tell him what the correct corporate name is so that the lawsuit can be properly filed ! Doug Landau notes that had this lawyer filed suit earlier, he could have easily found this information out through the pre-trial process called “Discovery,” where the hotel witnesses would have had to tell him this information under oath and penalty of perjury !

One of the ways the ABRAMS LANDAU team gets the information needed in slip and fall and trip and fall accidents is getting the investigation done early. The correct identities of corporations can be gleaned from the State Corporation Commission (“SCC”) and the Secretary of State for the Commonwealth of Virginia. Land records are also another good place to check, as are applications for liquor licenses, building permits, tax records, etc. It is critical to sue the correct defendants in a permanent injury case because the time limits are very strict, and otherwise meritorious cases can be dismissed by the courts if the wrong companies or individuals are named in the law suit papers.

Too often, Herndon premises liability lawyer Doug Landau sees cases that involve permanent injury and disability that were not properly worked up by the original lawyers. These lawyers focused only on the severity of the injury, collected medical bills, and neglected to do the proper liability and factual investigation early on in the case. Then, with the time limits about to run, and the insurance companies calculating that they have not properly prepared the case for court, no settlement offer (or only a “nuisance offer”) is extended and the ill-prepared lawyer is caught short, and their clients suffer the consequences. That is one reason engaging an experienced, fully-staffed lawyer to help you with your slip and fall or trip and fall case, especially against a national chain of hotels, inns or suites. If the liability (= “fault”) investigation is done early, and the pre-injury and post-accident medical records are evaluated properly, then many problems encountered by lawyers who wait until “the last minute” can be avoided and a much better net outcome for the injured victim can be achieved. If you or someone you know or care for has been injured as the result of a trip and fall, falling in a hole, slip and fall, spill, slippery substance, or other premises liability claim, and there are questions about what laws apply, e-mail or call us at ABRAMS LANDAU, Ltd. (703-796-9555) at once.