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Standing up to negligence whilst on holiday

As the last few weeks of summer pass us by, I am reminded that holidays are important. They are a time to relax and reconnect, a chance to wash away the worries and stresses of everyday life and leave us with many happy memories.

For some, however, that precious time may be ruined by an unexpected illness or injury cause by another’s negligence.

We have all seen compensation for holiday sickness highlighted in the news in recent months due to a reported rise in false claims. Food poisoning being one example, when it was later found that the person in question had consumed a considerable amount of alcohol during the course of their stay.

Negligently injured whilst away

We know from our caseloads that not all claims are false and sadly, people do suffer injury that could have been avoided whilst away. Accidents include:

  • An accident in an overseas hotel or resort premises. For example a trip, slip or fall on a wet floor in the hotel lobby or by the pool;
  • Illness suffered whilst staying in a holiday resort, such as food poisoning from all-inclusive food and drink provided by the hotel, or sickness from a contaminated swimming pool;
  • An accident while on an excursion organised by the hotel or other organisation
  • Serious injuries from activities such as paragliding or jet skiing.

Protection from Holiday Regulations

If you have booked your holiday through either a UK travel agent or tour operator such as Thomson or Thomas Cook, your holiday may be covered by “The Package Travel, Package Holidays and Package Tours Regulations 1992”, which set out comprehensive guidelines on how companies, and their service providers, should operate.

The “Regulations” allow for a claim to be brought against the travel agent or tour operator back home in the UK. They cover holidays which last either more than 24 hours, or at least overnight, which include two of the following which are part of an all-inclusive price: transport; accommodation, or another tourist service which is not considered ancillary.

Holiday makers have 3 years from the date of the accident or illness in which to bring a claim.
But what if you have booked flights and hotels separately? Even when these holiday “Regulations” don’t apply, there are a number of other laws that can help you claim compensation for your injuries or illness.

Take care on your holiday and come back with good memories!

Alexandria Jones is a solicitor in Personal Injury team.