When you decide to go out to eat with your friends or family, the last thing you expect is to end up in an emergency room. When you eat in a restaurant you have the reasonable expectation to assume the appropriate parties are serving you food that has been properly stored, is properly prepared, and is not contaminated with bacteria and viruses that can result in serious foodborne illnesses such as food poisoning. Unfortunately, in severe cases, individuals can suffer serious health problems and permanent damage. Since food poisoning can lead to devastating health complications many people wonder whether they can sue a restaurant for food poisoning. Keep reading to discover whether you can take legal action against a restaurant for food poisoning and learn how a competent Chesterfield County Personal Injury Lawyer can help you.
Can I hold a restaurant legally responsible for food poisoning in South Carolina?
If after consuming a meal at a restaurant you suffer from symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain, fever, loss of appetite, or cramps you likely have food poisoning. Food poisoning is a type of foodborne illness that individuals suffer from consuming contaminated food. Food poisoning is caused by bacteria and viruses such as E. coli, salmonella, norovirus, and listeria. Most instances of food poisoning are mild and individuals recover rather quickly. However, in more serious cases, individuals may require hospitalization as this illness can cause serious health complications and even death. If your case is severe and you have incurred substantial damages such as hefty medical bills, lost wages, or extreme mental anguish as a result of this foodborne illness you may be entitled to significant compensation. That being said, if you have contracted this foodborne illness you can file a personal injury lawsuit against a restaurant to recover monetary compensation for your economic and non-economic damages.
However, you can only pursue legal action against a restaurant if you can prove that the food served at the restaurant made you sick. Like any other type of personal injury claim, you must establish that the restaurant owes a duty to its customers. This includes serving food that has been properly stored, kept at the right temperature, cooked thoroughly, and prepared with clean utensils. Essentially, the restaurant must live up to certain safety standards to ensure they do not provide their customers with contaminated food that can cause them to get sick. Once you have established that the restaurant owes you a duty of care, you will need to show that you were diagnosed with food poisoning by a medical professional. From here, you will need to prove that you consumed food from the restaurant or contracted the foodborne illness from another person who consumed food at the restaurant. Finally, you must prove that your illness caused you to suffer some form of damage such as lost wages from missed work.
If you have suffered a serious foodborne illness such as food poisoning from consuming contaminated food at a restaurant, you need a determined lawyer from the Cockrell Law Firm, P.C. on your side. Our firm is committed to helping you secure the compensation you deserve.