Food Poisoning Lawsuits in Ohio: Seeking Compensation after Suffering from Contaminated Food
If you have fallen ill with a foodborne illness, you may be able to take legal action through food poisoning lawsuits against a restaurant or food distributor. However, you must be able to prove that the particular food caused the food poisoning, which necessitates specific evidence including a doctor’s diagnosis, proving that the illness caused serious harm, and perhaps genetic tests that match bacteria found on the infected person, a restaurant and food.
As a result of food poisoning lawsuits, a victim may be compensated for the results of a serious illness that could have been prevented by taking regular sanitary precautions. In some cases, food poisoning can lead to huge amounts of medical expenses, loss of wages, and significant pain and suffering. The amount of money won in a verdict or settlement with a restaurant or food company depends on the severity of the illness and the body of evidence that the affected party is able to preserve. It is prudent to seek immediate medical attention and contact an experienced attorney. Your illness may be related to a larger disease outbreak, and you are more likely to have a successful case.
Joe Lyon is a highly-rated Cincinnati, Ohio personal injury attorney with experience in injuries due to food poisoning. The Lyon Firm has represented plaintiffs nationwide in foodborne illness claims.
Getting a Medical Diagnosis of Food Poisoning
To protect your legal rights after falling ill from food poisoning, it is important that a medical professional test a urine, blood and stool sample to determine the specific pathogen (bacteria, virus or parasite) that made you sick. This can narrow down where and how you were affected. Bacterial cells must be sent to a laboratory for genetic testing, and the results will be crucial evidence for a plaintiff. If you have any questions about the important lab testing or legal procedure, contact The Lyon Firm for information.
Bacteria have DNA patterns that can be identified with processes called pulsed-field gel electrophoreses (PFGE) and whole gene sequencing. When someone is diagnosed with Campylobacter, E. coli, Salmonella, or another bacterial pathogen, PFGE testing can be performed on bacteria found in the patient, the food and a restaurant. If the DNA patterns match, this is important evidence that can lead to a successful legal claim. Once you have medical evidence on your side, a personal injury attorney can advise you how to proceed against the negligent party that caused the illness.
Leftover food is sometimes tested to find out if it is contaminated. In some disease outbreaks, lawyers and health officials have gathered leftover food suspected of being the source of an illness. It is important to talk to a lawyer before throwing out leftover food from a restaurant.
Some of the most common pathogens that can contaminate food and cause severe foodborne illness include:
- Clostridium botulinum—may cause botulism, and lead to paralysis
- Campylobacter—causes campylobacteriosis, and may develop into Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS)
- E. Coli—can lead to colitis, hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS), or thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura (TTP)
- Hepatitis A—can lead to liver damage
- Listeria—causes listeriosis, and may result in meningitis and sepsis
- Salmonella—in severe cases can cause meningitis and sepsis
- Shigella—may cause hemolytic uremic syndrome
- Vibrio—can cause vibriosis, a fatal illness caused by eating raw oysters and other seafood
Why File Your Food Poisoning Lawsuits?
A legal claim against a company is likely to get a fast settlement if you hire an experience personal injury attorney. Filing a lawsuit indicates to the company that you are prepared to prove with sufficient evidence that their negligence caused a serious illness. A legal claim also communicates to the company that you have an attorney that is willing to fight the company for however long it takes to win rightful compensation.
Once an injury claim is filed, an attorney can take legal steps to obtain relevant corporate and health department documents to help bolster a food poisoning case. Without a lawsuit, it may be difficult to get important company information. At this point, an attorney can interview restaurant employees, management, and other people involved to get additional information.
If you fall seriously ill, you may not be the only one. You may be part of an outbreak that must be contained for the sake of public health safety. Local health departments should know if you are part of an outbreak. People sickened in an outbreak may be able to seek settlements from the company that owns the restaurant.
Whether you get food poisoning from a restaurant or from contaminated food directly from a distributor, contact an attorney to find out if you have a case to sue for rightful compensation.
If you or a loved one has suffered from a foodborne infection, and have questions about food poisoning lawsuits available to improve quality of life and medical care in Ohio, contact The Lyon Firm (800) 513-2403. You will speak directly with Mr. Lyon, and he will help you answer these critical questions.