Will There Be Coronavirus Personal Injury Lawsuits?

Many of us already suspect we’ve been infected — and even recovered from — the new coronavirus outbreak tearing across the globe. Some believe they contracted the disease COVID-19 as far back as January. The real question is this: who is responsible for this outbreak? People have already been financially devastated by this pandemic, and they’re hungry for someone to blame — someone whose money can help make them whole again.

Of course, the answer isn’t likely to alleviate growing worries about the economic reality that will inevitably become the new world order for many Americans. There is no one person to blame. One law firm has already sued business entities in China for allowing the viral outbreak to grow unimpeded for weeks without notifying leaders around the world. The suit even goes so far as to make the baseless claim that the virus came from a Chinese lab (it did not).

We’re not very optimistic about the chance that this suit succeeds.

Who else can we blame? The government? President Trump? His early ignorance regarding the severity of the then-potential pandemic is arguably the biggest reason that there are more cases in America than anywhere else in the world. Our deaths will eclipse everyone else’s shortly. He denied tests from the World Health Organization (WHO) when they offered, which prevented local and state governments from locating and tracking down those who were infected early.

Who else? The people who have denied stay-at-home or shelter-in-place orders? Many people have yet to take this outbreak seriously, even though the number of deaths in our country will likely equal seasonal flu deaths by the beginning of May. The numbers will only continue to go up from there, in part because people didn’t stay put. 

One man was even recently arrested for making a terrorist threat after licking products at a local Wal-Mart while asking, “Who’s afraid of coronavirus?”

Although many individuals and organizations share blame for allowing the coronavirus to spread needlessly, businesses are the ones who might take much of the early blame. Personal injury law firms expect hundreds of thousands or even millions of cases on their desks in the coming weeks and months.

This is because some businesses are still forcing employees to work sick or face termination, failing to offer (paid) sick leave or time off, failing to offer hazard pay even after workers are classified as essential, or failing to offer a safe environment and personal protective equipment (PPE). These blunders make businesses easy targets.

But do these necessarily make easy cases? No. Negligence does not mean proof of negligence, and that’s what people need to attract the attention of a personal injury lawyer and settle or win a subsequent case. If you think your individual situation requires our attention, then by all means: get in touch.