Food Safety Lawyer Can Help You Recover
Dining out or cooking a favorite meal at home should be an enjoyable experience. Instead, if you have suffered due to a foodborne illness in a packaged product or at a restaurant, a food poisoning lawyer can help. You shouldn’t have to worry that a restaurant employee or food manufacturer skirted safety protocols, leaving you eating contaminated food.
About one in six Americans (48 million people) will get foodborne illnesses every year, according to the CDC. While food poisoning can sometimes result in minor discomfort, the CDC also reports every year 128,000 people are hospitalized for their illness, while 3,000 people die.
If you or someone you love has been impacted by a severe food poisoning case, our food poisoning product liability lawyers are here to help you recover. From medical bills to lost wages, emotional stress, and more, food poisoning due to someone else’s negligence can wreak havoc on your life. We can ensure you get the compensation you deserve. And we don’t get paid unless we win your case. Contact us today for a free consultation to discuss the specifics of your food poisoning case.
What is Food Poisoning?
Many Americans will experience food poisoning in their lifetime. Also classified as a foodborne illness, food poisoning is exactly what it sounds like: poisoning due to contaminated or mishandled food. You could experience food poisoning symptoms from eating a variety of contaminated foods.
A typical case of food poisoning could result in an irritated stomach, hospitalization, or in the very worst cases, death. If these are present in your food, it could result in contamination:
- Bacteria or viruses
- Exposure to bugs, rodents
- Exposure to very hot weather for long period of time, especially if food is meant to be refrigerated
When to See a Doctor for Food Poisoning
Often people who experience food poisoning are able to recover from their symptoms at home. The bst thing you can do is get rest, drink plenty of water, and take over the counter medication as needed. Some common symptoms of food poisoning according to the CDC include:
- Upset stomach, severe abdominal pain, or cramping
While some cases of food poisoning just need time to resolve themselves, others require medical treatment. But how do you know when to see a doctor for food poisoning symptoms? According to the CDC, if any of these symptoms are present after consuming contaminated food, you should seek medical attention:
- Bloody diarrhea
- Fever over 102 degrees
- Excessive vomiting (if you cannot keep any food down, you could become severely dehydrated)
- Dehydration (signs to look out for include: Dry mouth, no urination, dizziness)
- Diarrhea that lasts more than 3 days
This is not an exhaustive list. If you feel for any reason like your symptoms are beyond at-home care, you should call a doctor. It’s always better to err on the side of caution. The CDC also warns that while most people only experience symptoms for a few hours or days, other cases have lead to hospitalization and long-term health issues. Some examples of long-term health issues caused by food poisoning include:
- Brain and Nerve Damage
- Kidney failure
If your bout of food poisoning has kept you out of work for any period of time, you will want to visit a doctor. Should you decide to seek compensation from the negligent party, documentation from your doctor will be key in showing how the incident impacted your life. A food poisoning lawyer can help you build your case and gather evidence.
Types of Food Poisoning
From cross-contamination to improperly prepared or unsanitary conditions, foodborne illness can be a very unpleasant result of dining out. You should be able to trust that a restaurant is following local health department guidelines and food safety rules when preparing your food. If that does not happen and a negligent restaurant serves unsafe food, resulting in food poisoning in any of its customers, it should be held responsible.
Unfortunately there are many ways foodborne illnesses can be present in your food. Here are some of the major contaminants that could cause food poisoning and serious illness, according to the CDC:
- Staph (Staphylococcus): This is often present in food that is not cooked after handling by a person who potentially has not washed their hands. Think foods like: sliced meats, sandwiches, pastries.
- Vibrio: Often present in uncooked shellfish, particularly oysters.
- C. Perfringens: One of the most common types of food poisoning, impacting about 1 million people a year according to the CDC. This is most often seen in meat and poultry that has been pre-cooked in large batches and then held and served at unsafe temperatures. C. Perfringens is commonly seen after people have eaten at a cafeteria, a catered event, or another place that has prepared food in large batches.
- Salmonella: A very common source of food poisoning outbreaks, salmonella is estimated to impact 1.35 million Americans each year, according to the CDC. They also report salmonella results in 26,5o0 hospitalizations and 420 deaths each year.
- Norovirus: The most common culprit for foodborne illness, norovirus is often seen in leafy greens, fruit, shellfish and unsafe water, according to the CDC. It can be passed onto food by a person who has feces or vomit particles on their hands before food handling. This makes food safety practices incredibly important.
- Botulism: This type of food poisoning generally comes from improperly canned or fermented foods.
- E.Coli: This is often found in raw or undercooked meat and raw vegetables like lettuce.
- Listeria: The third most common cause of death from foodborne illness, listeria is particularly dangerous for pregnant women and infants. It is often found in soft cheeses, deli meats, and unpasteurized milk.
Can I Sue For Food Poisoning?
The short answer is yes, you may have a lawsuit if you have suffered from food poisoning. If you have eaten or been exposed to contaminated food that caused serious illness, food poisoning lawyers can help you with a product liability lawsuit against any parties responsible for your illness.
Everyone from restaurant employees to commercial farmers and manufacturers should be following food safety and local health guidelines. Doing so ensures the food supply is safe. If that is not the case, and a consumer ends up eating contaminated food, then a food poisoning lawsuit could be the best path to help the person recover from serious illness.
Who is Responsible For My Food Poisoning
The strongest food poisoning or product liability cases will be if there is documented evidence of contaminated food in the supply chain. For instance, if you were left severely ill after eating romaine lettuce and the FDA issued a recall on the manufacturer, that would be solid evidence for a food poisoning attorney to build your case.
Otherwise, the first step in food poisoning cases is to establish negligence. At what point in the chain of command did the food you ate become contaminated, and was it due to someone’s negligence? Here are just a few parties that could be held responsible in food poisoning cases:
- Food manufacturer
- Corporate food company
- Food service worker
- Cook or Chef
- Restaurant Owner
- Restaurant Server
- Restaurant Back of House Prep Employee
How Do You Prove a Case of Food Poisoning?
Once you have identified the party responsible for your food poisoning claim, you then must show they failed to take necessary steps to prevent your food from being contaminated. Unfortunately, many times a company is aware they are cutting corners when it comes to food safety, but they would rather prioritize maximizing profits.
Experienced food poisoning attorneys know how to build a successful food poisoning case. Our team will work to investigate the source of your illness. This could mean sourcing security camera footage from warehouses or restaurants, or checking food safety logs to ensure standards were being met. We also have teams of experts we can call on to back up claims of when, where, and how your illness was caused by contaminated food.
If you think you have fallen ill after eating foods that were contaminated due to someone else’s negligence, it’s imperative you don’t delay. Reach out to a food poisoning lawyer today. Not only do you have to worry about the statute of limitations to file your case, but food poisoning lawsuits are best acted upon immediately.
A Food Poisoning Lawyer Will Help You Recover Compensation
Eating your favorite foods shouldn’t result in a health risk after eating contaminated foods. Experienced food poisoning lawyers at Munley Law are here to help you get the compensation you deserve. Our team of product liability lawyers as been holding negligent parties responsible for decades on behalf of our clients. We’re passionate about making sure our clients receive compensation for their injuries, including medical bills, pain and suffering, emotional stress and in the very worst cases, wrongful death.
Foodborne illness cases can be complicated to win. In many cases, you will be up against large corporations, from food producers to restaurant chains, who have teams of lawyers who will fight to ensure they don’t have to pay for their mistakes. At Munley Law, our food poisoning lawyers do not get paid unless we win your case. Contact us today for a free consultation.