If you’re thinking about renting your home out through Airbnb, you probably haven’t given much thought to injuries on your property. Nevertheless, accidents do happen. If an Airbnb guest is injured on your property, who exactly should be held responsible? The answer isn’t always clear, but there are ways you can protect yourself.
What Qualifies as an Injury?
In legal terms, an injury is any harm a person suffers as a result of the action or negligence of someone else. This includes physical harm like cuts, scrapes, and broken bones, but it also includes certain non-physical types of harm, such as breach of contract, damage to one’s reputation, and the deprivation of legal rights.
How Airbnb Host Protection Insurance Affects Liability
To mitigate the risks to both hosts and guests, Airbnb offers what is known as Host Protection Insurance. According to the company, this insurance “provides primary liability coverage for up to $1,000,000 per occurrence in the event of a third-party claim of bodily injury or property damage related to an Airbnb stay.”
Put simply, Airbnb’s Host Protection Insurance protects you in the case that a guest suffers an accidental physical injury and files a claim against you as the host. It does not, however, cover harm caused by intentional acts, problems with the property (like bed bugs or mold), car accidents, or non-physical injuries. If the harm falls outside the scope of this policy, you may still be personally liable for the injury.
How Does This Differ from Hotels?
Because hotels are fully staffed businesses with the responsibility of maintaining safe and secure premises, it’s much easier for the parties involved to figure out who’s liable and take appropriate legal action. If a hotel guest is hurt after slipping or tripping on an improperly maintained floor, the guest can feel fairly confident that the hotel is liable and that they can afford to pay for the damages.
In the case of an Airbnb, however, things simply aren’t as clear. Hosts can’t be expected to have the same kind of resources to eliminate risks, and they often can’t afford to pay for damages on their own. This leaves both guests and hosts at the mercy of whatever policies are in place.
What to Do if Someone Is Injured in Your Airbnb
If someone is hurt while staying at your Airbnb rental property, get in touch with a premises liability lawyer in Houston or personal injury lawyer before you speak to anyone else. They can help you review any relevant insurance policies and help you understand what your rights and responsibilities are. Other parties—like Airbnb and insurance companies—may place their own interests first.
Find an Experienced Premises Liability Lawyer in Houston
If you’re facing legal claims after a guest was injured at your Houston-area Airbnb, the experienced attorneys at Schechter, Shaffer & Harris, L.L.P., Accident & Injury Lawyers can help you navigate the often gray area of Airbnb-related litigation. Call (713) 364-0723 today to schedule a free case evaluation.