For the most part, hotels are completely liable for the safety of their guests and their guest’s property. Similar to rental law, hotels have a duty of care to their guests and it is the responsibility of the victim to prove that hotel management was negligent.
Under premises liability law, a hotel guest is an “invitee” which means they were legally invited on the premises and under those grounds they are owed a greater level of protection. The hotel must conduct routine inspections and readily repair dangerous conditions.
Some of the hotel’s obligations are to:
- Maintain locks on the hotel rooms
- Have enough security, including guards and cameras
- Train staff
- Keep working elevators and safe stairs
- Prevent insect infestation
If you can prove that the hotel directly contributed towards your injury or losses then you may have a premises liability case. The hotel is not liable for injuries that occur beyond their foreseeable scope of view, such as an injury caused by another guest or if the victims own negligent actions added to the injury.
Vicarious liability is the legal term used when a company is held liable for its employee’s behavior if it falls under the course of their employment. This includes but is not limited to bullying, harassment, violent, illegal, or sexual acts. Under this legal theory, the hotel is liable for its employee’s actions even if they are unaware of them. Although California hotels have limited liability when it comes to theft in most cases, the law is cut and dry.