If you’re planning a holiday, taking annual leave overseas or have recently come back from a trip abroad, you hopefully won’t need to make a holiday food poisoning compensation claim. With many personal injury solicitors advertising their services, our team of Travel Litigation Solicitors thought you might like to know how they work and what it is a specialist travel lawyer can do for you.
Where does a Travel Litigation Lawyer begin?
Once you have contacted Slater and Gordon, the first thing our Travel Litigation Solicitors do is to take instructions and review the booking documents to identify the correct Defendant – is the Defendant the English Tour operator, the accommodation provider or the hotel directly. This will determine the relevant Regulations and jurisdiction.
Once we have identified the Defendant we write a formal letter of claim outlining our position. This gives the Defendant 42 days to acknowledge the claim and then six months thereafter in which to investigate liability. At the end of the 6 months they must state whether they intend to admit or deny the claim.
What happens if the Defendant denies liability for your illness?
If the defendant denies liability then they must disclose any evidence they have in support of that decision.
Whilst the 6 month time period is running we take a formal statement from you, the client, which will cover:
• how the holiday was booked;
• the holiday itself;
• the illness;
• how the illness has affected you thereafter.
Assuming that we consider your case has prospects of success we shall obtain medical records – both from the UK and, if necessary, abroad.
What can you do to increase your chances of a claim?
As the claimant, you can increase your chances of a successful case by gathering as much evidence of the food poisoning as possible.
If you suffer food poisoning at a resort, if possible, you should do the following:
1. If possible take photos of any substandard food.
2. Report the illness to the manager and tour rep – keep a copy of the illness report/record.
3. Speak to other guests – take name and numbers of other people who are suffering.
4. Keep a diary of the food that you ate on the days before you became ill.
5. Call for a doctor.
6. Keep any medical records you are provided with.
If you suffer food poisoning in the UK, you should:
1. Visit your GP.
2. Contact a Travel Litigation Solicitor.
What happens next?
Slater and Gordon Travel Litigation lawyers will then approach a medical expert experienced in dealing with illness cases, and will send them your signed statement and medical records to enable him to produce a report supporting your case and detailing the illness you have suffered. At that stage we can then decide if it is necessary for you to undergo a formal examination or whether we can value the claim based on the evidence we have obtained to date.
We also gather details of your out-of-pocket expenses and then look to make an offer to settle the claim.
Should the defendants deny liability or not make a suitable offer, then we issue court proceedings.
Read our previous blog on why it is important you choose a specialist Travel Litigation Solicitor to pursue a compensation claim overseas.
If you or your holiday party have suffered food poisoning on holiday our No Win, No Fee Solicitors can help you with your claim for compensation. Call us on freephone 0800 916 9046 or contact us online.