It can be difficult to prove a food poisoning claim as the cause of your food poisoning could be something you ate two, three or even up to ten days ago. This is why it is vital to use a solicitor with a great deal of experience in investigating and successfully bringing food poisoning claims. We have a dedicated team who will be able to help and advise you on your claim.
We have successfully claimed compensation for many clients who have suffered from severe food poisoning, either at home or abroad, caused by Salmonella, Listeria, Campylobacter, E. Coli 0157 or the Hepatitis A virus.
The law and your food poisoning claim
Consumer Protection Act 1987 – this is a very useful law which makes it easier to bring food poisoning claims. The Act says that the food retailer must sell a product which is free from harmful bacteria which could cause food poisoning. If you can establish the source of the food poisoning infection then the law imposes a “strict liability” rule on the offending restaurant, shop or supplier. Unusually, you do not need to prove that anyone was negligent, only that:
- the food was not safe (it contained food poisoning bacteria)
- you have been made ill (suffered food poisoning symptoms)
- the cause of the illness is the unsafe food (the infected food gave you food poisoning)
You can sue any or all of the organizations listed below:
- Producer of the food
- Importers i.e. importers into the EU not just the UK
- Own-branders – e.g. supermarkets who put their own name on a product
Our approach to food poisoning claims
We have a great deal of experience in bringing food poisoning claims. In one instance we acted for a number of people who contracted salmonella after eating at an East London restaurant. More than 160 people were poisoned and one of our clients was hospitalized for nearly a month. Unfortunately, he has ongoing neurological problems as a result of the severe dehydration he suffered.
Speak to one of our expert solicitors about your food poisoning claim
Please call 0800 916 9046, email email@example.com or use the short food poisoning online enquiry form. Our dedicated food poisoning claim solicitors operate from London, Manchester, Birmingham, Sheffield, Cardiff and Edinburgh and can offer immediate and accessible representation anywhere in the UK.
What to do if you think you have food poisoning
- Seek medical assistance
- Contact your local Environmental health department
- Stay off work or school for 48 hours or you may pass the illness to others
- Make a list of everything you ate in the previous 24 hours
- Keep the suspect food, if you still have it, in it’s packaging if possible
- Preserve the food (i.e. freeze it) but prevent contamination with other foods
- Keep all relevant receipts such as restaurant bills or supermarket receipts
- Take down names and contact details of possible witnesses
- Medical evidence from a gastroenterologist will be required to prove your illness and the extent of your recovery.
Claims can be difficult to pursue if the food poisoning bacteria have a long incubation period. But if you were one of large group who have been poisoned then your food poisoning claim will be easier to prove.
If you ate in many different establishments in a short period of time then it may be difficult to identify the source of the infection.
- Stomach cramps
Repeated vomiting and diarrhea from food poisoning can dehydrate a person rapidly. The elderly and the very young are at particular risk from serious injury due to dehydration. Urgent hospital treatment can be required for severe cases of infection.
Likely reasons include
- inadequate cooking to kill food poisoning bacteria
- improper storage of foods that are a potential source of food poisoning bacteria
- cross contamination of bacterial infection from food to food
- poor hygiene standards
More information can be found at the Food Standards Agency.
Environmental Health Officers handle complaints about food quality, hygiene and safety issues that have caused food poisoning. They will investigate allegations and prosecute the food establishment if there is sufficient evidence.
Environmental Health Officers can gather evidence quickly using their statutory powers. Such evidence may be vital to your food poisoning claim.