Posts Tagged ‘Financial Plan’

What Do New Jersey Hotels and Motels Have To Do To Ensure Guests’ Safety?

April 22nd, 2022

Whether you travel for vacation or for work, most of the time, you will be staying over night at a hotel or motel. Your hotel room becomes your home for the length of your stay. Because the room is your “home” away from home, you want to feel safe and secure. So what does the hotel have to do to ensure safety?

Under New Jersey law, innkeepers are simply required to take reasonable steps to prevent accidents and injuries to persons who are lawfully on their property. This is the case in security or negligent security situations. Assaults, sexual assaults, robberies and other physical attacks may be caused by inadequate security, improper lighting or design of the building or other such inadequate conditions of the premises.

If criminal activity is foreseeable, the innkeeper must take reasonable steps to make its premises safe for guests to prevent injuries. If innkeepers do not do that, they can be responsible for injuries their guests sustain as a result of an assault by a third-party on the premises, and even in a guest room.

In a New Jersey case, a guest of a resort was sexually assaulted in her room by a former employee of the resort. On the evening of the attack, the former employee was seen on the premises by security guards. The resort knew that this former employee was bitter about being fired. The security guards tried to find the former employee but were unsuccessful. Furthermore, several weeks before the attack, two other disgruntled former employees broke into guest rooms to steal a number of things. In a situation like this the resort can be found responsible for the guest’s injuries from the sexual assault because the criminal activity was foreseeable. The Resort knew about the prior criminal activities because of disgruntled former employees. Grossman v. Club Med Sales, 273 N.J. Super. 42 (1994).

Another example of when hotels can be held responsible for injuries to their guests if a guest gets hurt as a result of a fight or brawl at the hotel. If the hotel or motel hears or knows of loud, violent activities on its premises, it has a duty to intervene. If a fight breaks out in the pool area and the hotel knows about it, it has to intervene either by stopping the fight or calling the police or both. The hotel cannot just sit back and do nothing. Nebel v. Avichal Enterprises, 704 F. Supp. 570 (1989).

With the above in mind, it’s not enough to rely on the hotel to ensure your safety. As the traveler, you must be security conscious and can ask the hotel some questions before you make your reservation:

1. Does the hotel have round-the-clock security personnel?
2. Does the hotel require guests to present a government issued photo ID when registering?
3. Does the hotel restrict access to guest-room floors to those staying there?

The more you know about the Hotel or Motel is one of the best ways you can ensure peace of mind.