There is no part of modern society that has not been impacted by the 2020 novel coronavirus pandemic, and businesses forced to close for fear of spreading the virus have suffered particularly debilitating financial losses. In Tennessee and various other states across America, the desire to return to something approaching normality is inspiring many state legislatures to loosen restrictions on business closures. Unfortunately, this can put employees and customers at serious risk.
If you or a loved one contracted COVID-19 due to negligence by a business or healthcare facility operator, you may have a tough time pursuing civil litigation against them even with help from a seasoned attorney. That being said, guidance from a Murfreesboro coronavirus lawyer could still be crucial to boosting your odds of success if you decide to go through with a claim.
When Could a Business Bear Liability for a Coronavirus Infection?
Generally, premises liability law dictates that businesses in Tennessee owe a duty of reasonable care to prevent legal visitors from suffering undue harm due to hazardous conditions on their property. If an injured claimant wants to file suit against a business for failing to uphold their duty of care, they must provide evidence showing exactly how the duty of care they were owed was breached, and then demonstrate a causal relationship between that breach of duty and their injuries and losses.
Unfortunately, there are several places in this formula for legal negligence where civil cases for coronavirus infections will likely run into trouble. For example, it is not clear that eliminating all risk of a customer contracting COVID-19 is a reasonable burden to put on a business during a pandemic, so the applicable duty of care may not cover coronavirus infections in every situation.
In the same vein, proving direct causation of an infection would be extremely hard, even if a business was negligent in their cleaning and sanitation procedures. However, a local coronavirus attorney may be able to help an individual plaintiff successfully pursue compensation under particular circumstances.
Potential Defendants in COVID-19 Claims
The parties most likely to be named as defendants in successful coronavirus claims are businesses that fail to meet sanitation standards established under state or federal law. Currently, healthcare facilities are the only businesses that must meet federal safety standards to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus, so negligence in hospitals, clinics, and especially nursing homes may be actionable grounds for a lawsuit.
Filing suit against private businesses in other sectors is likely to be a more difficult prospect, but especially egregious negligence or intentional actions may warrant litigation. In rare cases, it may also be possible to file suit directly against an individual for an act of criminal assault that results directly in a COVID-19 infection. A conversation with an experienced lawyer could clarify the options available to a particular coronavirus patient in Murfreesboro.
Learn More by Speaking with a Murfreesboro Coronavirus Attorney
Now more than ever before, Tennessee residents need to be careful about how they interact with one another and take all possible precautions to minimize the spread of COVID-19. However, while a business that negligently fails to take such precautions may seem like a good candidate for litigation, recovering compensation through such a lawsuit is likely to be very difficult in practice.
Speaking with a Murfreesboro coronavirus lawyer should be your first priority if you want to explore your legal options after contracting COVID-19. To schedule a consultation, call today.