As you make plans for a romantic dinner this Valentine’s Day, you might want to take a minute to confirm that the restaurant you will be visiting has passed recent restaurant inspections. In the state of Florida, you can quickly check this online here through the Florida Department of Business & Professional Regulation.
Foodborne illnesses or food poisoning occurs more frequently than you may realize: nearly 1 in 6 Americans get food poisoning each year. According to the CDC, nearly 50 million Americans become sick annually from these foodborne illnesses. And foodborne illnesses that occurs from restaurant food or even at your home can be serious — over 100,000 Americans are hospitalized each year with food poisoning.
Consumers can acquire food poisoning from consuming contaminated food or drink. Food can become contaminated with bacteria or viruses at the farm, during the packaging process, at a processing facility, or at the store or restaurant. If the food is not maintained at appropriate temperatures or if it is exposed to other contaminants, the food can become a cause of food poisoning.
While there are many, the most common bacterial and viral causes of foodborne illnesses include Norovirus, Salmonella, E. Coli, and Listeria. When individuals get food poisoning, they often react with symptoms including nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain, cramps, and fever. Because these symptoms are similar to the flu and other sicknesses, a medical diagnosis from a physician or medical clinic is important.
What to do if you suspect food poisoning
If you suspect that you or a loved one may have food poisoning, we recommend that you take the following actions:
- Seek immediate medical attention.
Consult with your physician, medical clinic, or hospital to treat your symptoms and confirm a diagnosis. You should request specific, conclusive tests such as stool samples that will help prove or disprove whether a foodborne toxin made you sick.
- Determine which foods and/or drinks caused the illness.
Because food poisoning can occur from hours to days after consumption, it can be difficult to pinpoint the source. If you believe the suspected food was from a restaurant, we recommend that you save any of the remaining food or leftovers that you may have brought home. If the food was consumed at home, save any discarded food as well as any containers. Food scraps and containers may be critical pieces of evidence. Additionally, keep any receipts or pictures from the restaurant or store where the suspected food or drink was purchased.
- Consult with an experienced, reputable personal injury liability attorney.
If you or a loved one has become sick due to a foodborne illness, the best advice is to find a reputable attorney who not only has significant experience with personal injury liability cases but also has specific experience with foodborne illness cases.
The right attorney will provide expert guidance to help you prove the source of the food poisoning, obtain fair and proper compensation (for medical bills, lost income, out-of-pocket expenses, and/or pain and suffering,) and help ensure that the manufacturer or food provider won’t make the same mistake twice. Since certain documents must be filed shortly after the incident, we recommend contacting an attorney right away so that you can protect your rights and receive proper compensation.
The case may be relatively easy to prove if the government health agency has linked a particular food to an outbreak of food poisoning. Alternatively, the case may be complex if the suspected source is from a restaurant and there are no food leftovers available for testing.
Whether the case is easy or complex or somewhere in between, you can expect Goldman & Daszkal, P.A. to provide straightforward guidance on the best options for your case.
Do you have questions about food poisoning? Goldman & Daszkal, P.A. can answer them. Contact us at (954) 428-9333 or www.goldmandaszkal.com.
Since 1990, Goldman & Daszkal, P.A. has provided reputable legal representation to people throughout Palm Beach, Broward, and Miami-Dade Counties. The firm has helped thousands of individuals recover compensation from motor vehicle accidents, slip and fall accidents, product defect and liability cases, pharmacy errors, and negligent security cases to cover medical expenses, pay bills, take care of their families, and return to work. Goldman & Daszkal, P.A. can help you get the relief you need to start living your life again after a serious injury. For a free and confidential consultation, contact Goldman & Daszkal, P.A., at (954) 428-9333.