By Stephen Kane. Last Updated 2nd February 2024. Have you suffered food poisoning due to the negligence of a third party? And can you prove that the food poisoning had a detrimental effect on your life, possibly for the long-term? If the answer to each of these questions is “yes”, then this guide is just for you. We’re covering important aspects of filing a compensation claim due to a victim suffering from food poisoning. Along the way, we handle a sample case study with one such victim receiving a settlement of £14,500.
Now, you can browse each of the sections by using the list of headings below. But you can also speak to our friendly team at any time. They may put you into contact with our panel of personal injury solicitors if you have a valid claim to make. Our advisors could also discuss how much compensation you may be able to claim when making a No Win No Fee food poisoning claim. To get in touch, you can call 0161 696 9685, complete the contact form or leave us a message via our Live Chat.
Choose A Section
- Case Study: £14,500 Compensation Payout For Food Poisoning
- Am I Eligible To Claim A Compensation Payout For Food Poisoning?
- Food Poisoning Compensation – Time Limits
- When Could You Suffer Food Poisoning?
- Do I Need Evidence To Claim Compensation For Food Poisoning?
- Food Poisoning Compensation – How Much For My Pain And Suffering?
- Food Poisoning Claims With A No Win No Fee Solicitor
This guide will focus on the fictional case study of Mr C. Mr C had a successful career in finance, and reviewed restaurants in his spare time for a hobby website. When Mr. C visited a seafood restaurant, he contracted food poisoning after being served seafood that had expired.
This caused him to suffer from stomach cramps, frequent vomiting, and diarrhoea. After a week of illness, Mr C was admitted to the hospital, where he had to stay for another two weeks. This caused him to miss a month of work, and his wife also had to miss a week of work in order to care for him.
Mr C experienced ongoing bowel problems as a result of the food poisoning and had to hire a dietician to help him find a diet that would not aggravate his condition. He could no longer review restaurants as a hobby, and the illness had a significant effect on his social life.
How Much Compensation Did Mr C Receive?
Mr C made a food poisoning compensation claim, and was awarded a total of £14,500. This included general damages for the pain, suffering, and loss of amenity he endured, and special damages for the financial losses he experienced as a result of the food poisoning. You can find a full breakdown of his payout in the table below.
|Type Of Special Damages
|Lost earnings during his month off work
|Costs of medication during his recovery
|Costs of using public transport for hospital visits
|Costs of hiring a dietitian to help him to alter his diet during recovery
|Additional costs of him suffering food poisoning
|Wife took time away from work
To learn more about making a food poisoning compensation claim, contact our team.
You must meet certain eligibility criteria in order to claim compensation for food poisoning. You must have evidence that proves:
- You were owed a duty of care.
- This duty was breached.
- As a result of this breach, you suffered food poisoning.
Restaurants and similar establishments owe their customers a duty of care. This is set by the Occupiers’ Liability Act 1957 as the party in control of the space must ensure your reasonable safety. Should you develop food poisoning because this duty wasn’t adhered to, you might be eligible for claiming food poisoning compensation.
For example, the Food Standards Agency recommends certain types of meat are cooked thoroughly, and their juices run clear before being served. If a restaurant serves poultry that is still pink inside, this could be a breach of their duty of care. Should you develop food poisoning as a result, you might be eligible for compensation. The Food Standards Agency is an independent government department that protects public health in relation to food.
To find out if you are eligible to make a food poisoning claim, get in touch with one of our advisors.
Food poisoning claims must be started within the personal injury claims time limit. This is generally three years from the date of the food poisoning or the date it could be connected to negligence as set by the Limitation Act 1980. However, there are circumstances that will suspend the time limit for making a personal injury claim. These include:
- If a person under the age of 18 suffers food poisoning, the time limit is suspended until their 18th birthday. However, while the food poisoning claims time limit is suspended, a litigation friend could be appointed to start a claim for food poisoning compensation on their behalf.
- When a person lacks the mental capacity to start a claim for food poisoning compensation themselves, the time limit is suspended indefinitely. A litigation friend can sue for food poisoning on their behalf at any point during the time limit’s suspension. However, should the injured party regain their mental capacity, the time limit begins.
You could sue for food poisoning caused by negligence and you start your claim within the time limit. Call our advisors to learn more about time limits in food poisoning claims.
If you are seeking compensation because you suffered food poisoning, you must be able to demonstrate that a party breached their duty of care and this resulted in your illness. This could occur in lots of different ways.
Examples of how food poisoning could occur include:
- Undercooked food. Thoroughly cooking food can kill harmful bacteria. Food should be cooked at the right temperature and for the correct amount of time.
- Improper chilling. Chilling foods can prevent bacteria from growing. Additionally, some foods need to be kept chilled to keep them safe, such as foods with a use-by date and prepared foods, like salads and desserts.
- Cross-contamination. This occurs when bacteria spreads between food and surfaces. For example, raw meat could drip onto an unwrapped dessert in the fridge resulting in the bacteria from the meat contaminating the dessert. Raw meat should be kept on a lower shelf to prevent this. Additionally, failing to wash hands after handling raw meat can spread bacteria.
- Poor kitchen hygiene. Effective cleaning practices can prevent bacteria from spreading. For example, work surfaces should be cleaned and disinfected between different tasks, such as handling raw meat and then preparing a salad.
To discuss food poisoning claims and the incident that led to your illness, get in touch with an advisor from our team.
One of the most important steps in the food poisoning claims process is gathering evidence. Evidence is crucial, as it can help prove different areas of your claim, including confirmation that it was food poisoning caused by negligence, who is responsible and how severe it is.
Some examples of evidence that you could collect to prove a claim for compensation for food poisoning include:
- Photographs: Taking photographs of the unsanitary conditions or any visible symptoms you are suffering could support a claim for food poisoning.
- Medical records: Your medical records may also be able to illustrate the severity of your food poisoning and the treatment you received. Similarly, if you choose to work with a solicitor, they may arrange for you to undergo an independent medical assessment.
- Witness statements: While you cannot collect these statements yourself, you can take the contact details of anyone who witnessed the circumstances leading up to the food poisoning or the effect it had on you. Then, a professional can take their statements at a later date.
One of the many benefits of working with a solicitor on your claim is that they can help you gather evidence. They can talk to witnesses on your behalf, arrange an independent medical assessment, and help source other useful evidence.
To find out if you could be eligible to work with a solicitor from our panel, contact our team of advisors today.
Compensation for a valid food poisoning claim can vary on a case-by-case basis. The amount you could receive will largely depend on factors such as the severity of the harm you have suffered, the treatment you have required and your recovery rate.
Your compensation payout will include general damages if your claim is successful. This is to compensate you for the pain and suffering your injuries or illness have caused.
In the table below, we’ve included compensation figures from the 16th and latest edition of the Judicial College Guidelines (JCG). This a document that may be used by those valuing your claim for general damages as it provides guideline compensation brackets for various forms of harm.
The figures in this table should be treated as a guide only. Also, note that the first entry in this table is an estimated figure that is not based on the JCG.
|Multiple Serious Injuries With Special Damages
|If you have grounds to claim for multiple serious injuries (physical and/or psychological), then you may receive a compensation payout for all of these plus certain special damages, like loss of earnings, for instance.
|Up to £500,000+
|Head/Brain Injury – Very Severe
|The person will have little to no language function. They’ll also show little, if any, meaningful response to their environment and will require full-time nursing care.
|£282,010 to £403,990
|Head/Brain Injury – Moderately Severe
|The person will be very seriously disable and will require constant professional care. Both physical disabilities and impairment of intellect and personality may be evident.
|£219,070 to £282,010
|Head/Brain Injury – Moderate (i)
|There is moderate to severe intellectual deficit. Other symptoms may include a personality change, plus issues with sight, speech, and other senses.
|£150,110 to £219,070
|Psychiatric Damage Generally – Severe
|The injured party will have problems that severely disrupt their life, education and work and the prognosis will be very poor.
|£54,830 to £115,730
|Psychiatric Damage Generally – Moderately Severe
|Those covered by this bracket will have significant problems with everyday activities. However, their prognosis will be much more optimistic than severe cases covered by the compensation bracket just above.
|£19,070 to £54,830
|Non-traumatic Digestive System Illness Or Injury (i)
|For severe cases of toxicosis, that could cause vomiting, fevers, diarrhea and require a hospital stay
|Non-traumatic Digestive System Illness Or Injury (ii)
|Serious cases of food poisioning with vomiting and diarrhea that could last over weeks. Symptoms could last for years
|Non-traumatic Digestive System Illness Or Injury (iii)
|Food poisoning causing cramps, bowel problems and fatigue. Effect could last over weeks but the person will recover
|Non-traumatic Digestive System Illness Or Injury (iv)
|Food poisoning that causes cramps and bowel problems over weeks
|Up to £3,950
If you’re eligible to claim general damages, then you may also receive compensation for special damages. This can cover financial losses or expenses which are directly related to the injuries or illness you’ve suffered. Loss of earnings is an example of a financial loss that may be covered under special damages. However, you will need to provide evidence of these losses. For example, a payslip could help prove a loss of earnings.
For more information on the other financial losses you may be compensated for under special damages, you can contact a member of our advisory team.
If you are making a food poisoning claim, then you could choose to seek legal representation from a solicitor who has experience with this type of case. One of the solicitors on our panel could help you with making your claim if you have a strong claim.
Furthermore, they may offer to work with you on a No Win No Fee basis with a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA). If you work with a No Win No Fee solicitor, you will not be required to pay any legal fees upfront. You also won’t need to pay any fees while your case is being processed. If your claim is unsuccessful, then you won’t need to pay for their services.
A success fee is subtracted from the compensation awarded to you if your claim is successful. This is a legally capped percentage of your compensation that is taken by the No Win No Fee solicitor supporting your case.
For more advice on making food poisoning claims with a No Win No Fee solicitor, you can contact our team:
More Resources And Guides On Food Poisoning
This guide has been covering all aspects of food poisoning compensation claims. But maybe you wish to know more information about this topic. That’s why we have a list of additional research links for you to check out.
- We also go into further detail on compensation settlement estimates.
- On that note, we break down compensation calculators as a whole.
- The NHS website also has a page covering severe food poisoning in great depth.
- They also explain poisoning in general.
- And the Food Standards Agency discusses how you can report food poisoning.