Personal injury lawsuits filed over food poisoning are sometimes straightforward. Maybe there was a mass case of food poisoning, and you can clearly point to a particular business as the cause of your illness. However, this isn’t always the case.
If you’ve suffered food poisoning and are wondering if you should sue a particular person or business that you think is responsible, you face the tough task of proving they did something wrong to make you sick. As part of that case, you may have to prove that you didn’t willfully contribute to the situation yourself. What you were doing with regard to the food can help distinguish your role in getting sick from the other party’s role.
Food poisoning lawsuits are often difficult to file because symptoms can show up days after you ate the food in question. The culprit could have been a restaurant, the food you ate at your friend’s house or something you cooked yourself. You may have to show that you did not do anything that could have contributed to the food poisoning.
For example, if you went to a restaurant and ate a dish you’ve had many times before, and the dish seemed fine, then it would be understandable why you continued to eat the food. However, if you went to the restaurant and ate something that you thought wasn’t cooked correctly or that seemed off, it is possible that the restaurant could claim that you should have sent the dish back instead of continuing to eat it when you clearly thought something was wrong.
As another example, let’s say you ate at a restaurant and took half your food home in a doggie bag. Did you refrigerate it as soon as you could, within a two-hour safety window? Or did you let it sit in your car for a couple of hours (on top of the hour or so it had been on your plate)? If you take actions that could be seen as reasonable and proper, such as refrigerating leftovers within that recommended two-hour window, you increase your chances of showing that your illness was the result of someone else’s negligence.
Legal Experience and Moving Forward
If you think you have a case against someone regarding your bout of food poisoning, it would be better to talk to a lawyer before trying legal action on your own. These can be tough cases to deal with, and an experienced personal injury attorney can go over everything that happened with you, why you think it was this particular food and what you can expect if you go to court. It’s beneficial to have a good lawyer on your side to ensure you take the best route.