Knowing what to do after an injury at an Airbnb rental includes knowing what to expect when filing a claim with Airbnb and how to sue Airbnb if negotiations fail. Virtually all short-term rental companies, like Airbnb, have insurance covering the costs of personal injuries filed by guests.
However, collecting compensation from these insurance policies isn’t easy. You must take certain steps to present a successful claim. Some steps include gathering evidence, sending a detailed preservation letter and notice of claim as soon as possible, preparing and sending a demand letter to the proper entity, and eventually litigating the claim if it gets denied or the offer to settle is too low.
You shouldn’t handle your Airbnb injury claim alone. Instead, let our premises liability lawyers do the heavy lifting and handle the legal aspects of your case for you. This way, you can focus on rebuilding your life and recovering after an Airbnb injury.
What to Expect When Filing a Claim with Airbnb
The best thing you can do to protect your rights to compensation after getting injured on someone else’s property is to hire an experienced personal injury lawyer. This includes injuries on vacation rental properties in Florida, such as VRBO or Airbnb. Hiring a lawyer can save you significant time and money and help settle your case quicker.
While your attorney gathers evidence and builds your case, there are ways you can help your Airbnb claim and ensure that you receive what you deserve.
Step #1: Seek Medical Treatment
The value of your claim will depend on the severity of your injuries and the type of medical treatment you receive. An individual forced into emergency surgery to repair a fractured femur caused by falling down a defective stairwell will have a more valuable claim than someone who suffers from bed bug bites due to an infestation at the Airbnb property.
Seeking medical treatment immediately after the incident helps document your injuries. This documentation is crucial when filing an insurance claim or pursuing legal action against the Airbnb host or company.
Step #2: Gather Evidence
Evidence makes or breaks any claim for personal injuries, including those suffered in vacation rentals like Airbnb. Immediately after the incident occurs, try to photograph and video the cause of the injury. Collect the names of all witnesses, including all the names, phones, and addresses of all individuals staying at the Airbnb.
The photographic evidence and the witnesses’ statements will help prove liability. Additionally, you should obtain copies of all your medical records and bills to present to Airbnb’s insurance carrier later.
The more evidence you collect, the better you and your Florida premises liability attorney will be in to maximize the value of your settlement.
Step #3: File a Claim with Airbnb
The next step is to complete Airbnb’s insurance program intake form. This form asks for basic information about the reservation, the injured person, and a brief description of what happened.
If you made the reservation, you might have all the necessary information to complete this form. However, what happens if you did not make the reservation or if the person who made the reservation is reluctant to provide you with the details?
If you do not have all the information needed to file the claim, call Airbnb support at 1-844-234-2500 or hire an attorney to investigate the matter and deal with Airbnb directly.
Step #4: Communicate with the Airbnb Insurance Claims Handler
After filing a claim with Airbnb, a claims handler will call you to discuss the incident in further detail. The Airbnb claims handler will likely request that you provide a recorded statement wherein they will ask a series of questions about how the incident occurred, the types of injuries you sustained, the medical expenses you incurred, and your health insurance information. The insurance claims adjuster will also ask for biographical information, including your date of birth, home address, social security number, and employment information.
In many claims, the insurance claims handler will send you medical record authorizations to sign and return to them. These medical record authorizations allow Airbnb’s insurance carrier to obtain your medical records and bills. Providing this information may jeopardize your claim because insurance companies often look for any way to misconstrue or manipulate facts after an Airbnb accident. To avoid potentially damaging your case, it is best to consult with an Florida injury attorney who can handle the claim correctly.
Step #5: Prepare a Demand Letter
This is where things get a bit tricky. Drafting a demand letter and compiling a thorough demand package is not straightforward. A demand letter must summarize many details, including:
- How the incident occurred
- Why Airbnb is liable
- What medical injuries were suffered
- The total medical expenses you paid
- An itemized list of health insurance liens
- The total amount of past and future lost wages, income, and benefits
- Documentation of wage loss (i.e., pay stubs and tax returns)
- Pain and suffering you endured or will live with
- Settlement demands
Many other items can and should be included in the demand letter, but it is difficult to determine what should be included without a complete understanding of your specific case. Sometimes the most challenging part of preparing a demand letter is figuring out exactly how much money to demand.
Once you have determined the demand figure (how much money you are asking to settle the claim), you must specifically request the number and give the insurance company a deadline to respond to your letter. A general rule of thumb is that thirty days is sufficient time.
As you can see, drafting a demand letter and holding insurance companies accountable is not easy. For this reason, it is best to have an experienced premises liability lawyer handle your case from the start. Doing so will ensure you do not miss any critical deadlines or make crucial mistakes that could affect your case. An experienced Airbnb rental injury lawyer will handle all the legwork to maximize your claim’s value.
Step #6: Negotiate a Settlement
The demand letter should provide Airbnb’s insurance company with all the information they need to make you a fair and reasonable settlement offer. However, it is very likely, that the insurance company will not agree to the number you demanded. When this occurs, they will present a much smaller number or outright deny liability.
If the insurance company denies liability, they are stating that they are not responsible for paying for your damages because Airbnb or any other insured party did not do anything wrong.
If their counteroffer is too small, your attorney will negotiate with the claims adjuster to reach a fair settlement.
If your claim is denied or the insurance company refuses to make an acceptable settlement offer, you and your Florida personal injury legal team may need to file a lawsuit to obtain the right.
Airbnb Claim FAQs
Can You Sue Airbnb for Injuries?
Yes, you can sue Airbnb for personal injuries sustained while staying at an Airbnb rental. However, the lawsuit’s or claim’s success will depend on whether the Airbnb, the Airbnb host, or Airbnb property manager’s negligence caused your injuries. Other parties may be liable. This list is not meant to be exhaustive.
Can You File a Claim for an Injury at an Airbnb Located Outside of the United States?
Yes, Airbnb’s terms and services permit an Airbnb guest to file a claim against Airbnb for an injury outside of the United States. Suppose you suffered an injury while staying at an Airbnb rental in a different country like Mexico. If this occurs, you may be able to seek compensation here in the United States from Airbnb, inc. for the damages that occurred outside of the country.
Who Can File a Claim Against Airbnb?
Any person staying at or visiting the Airbnb rental has a right to pursue a claim. It does not matter whether the individual pays for the rental, stays overnight, or is just visiting friends for lunch and is not staying at the property. Anyone who is invited to the Airbnb rental can file a claim.
When is Airbnb Liable for Injuries?
Airbnb may be liable when the rental property presents a dangerous condition that causes a guest to suffer an injury. Examples of dangerous conditions include:
- Defective or broken stairs
- Dangerous swimming pool conditions
- Roof collapses
- Unsafe flooring
- Inadequate security
This list is not exhaustive. Plenty of things can go wrong.
How Much Insurance Coverage Does Airbnb Provide?
All Airbnb rental properties in North America (including most of Central and South America) are covered by a one-million-dollar host protection insurance policy. The one-million-dollar host protection insurance policy pays up to one million dollars in damages for any individual claim for injuries.
Most personal injury claims against Airbnb settle for less than one million dollars. However, there are circumstances where one million dollars is insufficient to compensate the victim. In these cases, the property owner likely maintains a homeowner’s insurance policy as well. The homeowner’s insurance policy may provide excess coverage. However, many homeowner’s insurance policies exclude coverage for short-term rentals.
If you or a loved one sustained injuries that you believe are worth more than one million dollars, you must contact a personal injury attorney to assist with the matter.
Contact Our Airbnb Injury Lawyers Today
Prosper Shaked Accident Injury Attorneys PA has extensive experience handling Airbnb claims and helping clients obtain the compensation they need to cover medical bills, lost wages, and other damages.
If you or a loved one has been injured while staying at an Airbnb property in Florida, don’t hesitate to contact us at (305) 694-2676 for a free consultation with Prosper Shaked. Our Airbnb injury attorneys will provide the legal guidance and support you need to pursue your claim and protect your rights.