The coronavirus, officially known as COVID-19, has affected thousands of people across the globe. Despite the social distancing and quarantine measures, the number of cases in New York continues to go up. On March 28, CNN reported that one-third of the country’s reported cases are in the state.
Despite the seriousness of the situation, not everyone is observing the safety rules put in place to prevent the spread of the virus. On March 21, the NYPD visited over 5,500 clubs, bars, and restaurants, 4,111 of which were closed down because of COVID-19. It’s an alarming situation that many people still fail to take seriously.
How COVID-19 can affect your life
If you become infected, then the health consequences and economic repercussions can change your life completely. Pregnant women, seniors, and those with compromised immune systems are particularly susceptible to a life-altering outcome. If you are responsible for the financial support of your family, then the inability to work could cause severe financial hardship.
If you contract the virus or a loved one dies because a business or diagnosed individual failed to take safety measures, then you may be wondering what your legal options are. Can you pursue a personal injury or wrongful death claim against those responsible for spreading the infection?
The answer is yes. A COVID-19 infection can be handled like other illnesses and diseases caused by businesses and individuals, but how you pursue your claim will depend on how you got sick. For example, a food product that transmitted the virus could form the basis of a product liability claim against the seller. If someone knew they had COVID-19 but insisted on going out in public, then their conduct is arguably negligent.
Losses that you may be able to claim include:
- Loss of wages
- Cost of medical treatment and prescription medication
- Loss of consortium (if your loved one dies or the illness has a permanent impact on your health)
If you contracted the coronavirus while working, then you might be able to obtain workers’ compensation if you can prove that the illness was connected to your job. Did your employer refuse or fail to send a sick employee home? Were appropriate safety and sanitation measures not observed after another worker was diagnosed? If the answer to any of these questions is yes, then your employer may be liable.
If you become ill or lose a family member due to reckless exposure to COVID-19, then contact a New York personal injury attorney who will help you determine liability based on the circumstances of your case. While claims based on infectious disease transmission are not unprecedented, they are also not easy to pursue. An experienced attorney will work with you to seek compensation for your damages so that you can recover and rebuild.
If you have questions during the COVID-19 pandemic, then contact the law office of Jayson Lutzky PC. Mr. Lutzky is available a highly experienced Bronx, New York accident attorney. He is currently offering free consultations by phone or video conference. You may call his office at 718-329-9500 to set up an appointment.