Contracting a foodborne illness after attending a wedding or other social event can sour an otherwise enjoyable event. The consequences of food poisoning can range from mild to severe, and could result in death in some cases. After recovering from the symptoms of the food poisoning, the affected person may want to explore the possibility of seeking compensation from the person or entity that catered the event or provided the drinks for the event.
A person who suffers from food poisoning caused by the carelessness of the person or entity preparing the food in question, can seek compensation for their injuries by filing a lawsuit on a theory of negligence. This generally involves proving that a person or entity who prepared the food owed a duty of care and breached it, causing the plaintiff injury. In order to build a good case for negligence, it is important to identify the source of the food that caused the food poisoning.
Usually when the food poisoning happens at a function, and other people also ate the same food and suffered the same symptoms of food poisoning, it becomes easier to prove the source of the problem. However, if you alone suffer from food poisoning, even after eating with a group, you may have to do more to prove the source of the poisoning. This can be difficult if the food poisoning is caused by something that was eaten some time before the symptoms began manifesting, or if other food was eaten after the contaminated food. The key to a food contamination claim is proving that you were made sick by a certain contaminated food.
In some situations, the food poisoning can be caused by food that was contaminated at a factory or facility before being packaged and sold to consumers. If the plaintiff can prove that contaminated food came directly from a producer, the plaintiff may be able to proceed based on strict liability. A case brought under a theory of strict liability can be easier to prove in some ways because there is no requirement that the plaintiff show the producer did anything wrong that caused the contamination of the food. Recalls of certain foods can help provide evidence that the food was contaminated, but the plaintiff still has to prove he consumed the recalled food – ideally before the recall – and got sick as a result.
Florida courts have held that food sold for consumption comes with an implied warranty guaranteeing its safety to each. When a person gets sick from this food, the person can sue for breach of warranty.
Which theory an injured person pursues depends on the circumstances of the person’s case, and what they are likely to be able to prove. The decision on how to be proceed should be made in consultation with an experienced attorney with experience in personal injury cases.
Contact Us for More Information
For more information on how you can seek compensation for food poisoning from a restaurant, a caterer, or a company, contact an experienced personal injury and defective products lawyer at Vocelle & Berg, LLP, in Vero Beach, Florida for a free consultation.