How To Claim Pub Food Allergic Reaction Compensation? – A Complete Guide

By Jo Caine. Last Updated 27th June 2023. In the UK it is estimated that between 1-2% of adults suffer from a food allergy. If you are allergic to a certain type of food, you are responsible for managing your food allergy. If you suffered a pub food allergic reaction you may be wondering, “Can I sue a pub restaurant for an allergic reaction?”.

Restaurants, pubs and other eating establishments have a duty of care towards their customers. So if you have suffered an allergic reaction to certain ingredients in pub or restaurant food because the establishment neglected their duty of care towards you, you may be eligible to claim compensation for your injuries.

If you have suffered an allergic reaction after eating food at a pub or restaurant because they neglected to inform you of certain allergens contained in their foods, contact to begin your compensation claim.

We can offer you free legal advice about claiming compensation for an allergic reaction suffered after eating food at a pub or restaurant. If you can prove the pub acted in a negligent manner and caused an avoidable allergic reaction we could offer to connect you with a personal injury solicitor from our panel.

To begin your claim call us today on 0161 696 9685. Or write to us using the contact form on our website.

Pub food allergy compensation claims guide

Pub food allergic reaction compensation claims guide

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A Guide To Pub Food Allergic Reaction Compensation Claims

In the UK restaurants and pubs owe their customers a duty of care. This means that they are legally responsible for providing them with a safe and hygienic environment in which to dine. If an establishment acts negligently this breaches its duty of care. If a customer is injured or made ill as a result the restaurant can be held liable (legally responsible) for their injuries. This is codified in the Occupiers Liability Act 1957.

Is a restaurant liable for food allergies? If a restaurant acts in a negligent manner towards a customer, triggering a food allergy, the restaurant can be held liable for their injuries. For example, if you have a nut allergy and a pub failed to provide information informing you that the food contained nuts, they may be liable for an allergic reaction that took place.

Can you sue a restaurant for food allergy? When we talk about, a pub food allergic reaction, what we mean is a customer having an allergic reaction because of an ingredient that is contained within the food they eat. Meaning that no one is actually allergic to pub food as a whole.

In order to make a successful claim, you must be able to prove using evidence that a third party who owed you a duty of care caused your allergic reaction because of their negligence. If you wish to claim compensation for a pub or restaurant food allergic reaction, contact  Or to learn more, continue reading this allergy claims guide.

Pub Food Allergy Compensation Calculator

Do you wish to claim compensation for an allergic reaction? You can use the table below to estimate how much your compensation payout could be worth in general damages.

Injury Comments On The Illness Compensation Guidelines
Digestive System (b)(i) Severe toxicosis that causes acute pain, diarrhoea and vomiting. The person may require to spend a few days or weeks in hospital. £38,430 to £52,500

Digestive System (b)(ii) Serious food poisoning that is short-lived, with vomiting and diarrhoea that lasts for 2 to 4 weeks. £9,540 to £19,200
Digestive System (b)(iii) Significant stomach cramps, discomfort and altered bowel function due to food poisoning that lats for a few weeks. £3,950 to £9,540
Digestive System (b)(iv) Cramps, diarrhoea and varying degrees of disabling pain that last for some days or weeks. £910 to £3,950
Dermatitis and Other Skin Conditions Itching, irritation and rashes on both or one hand that resolves withing a few months with treatment. £1,710 to £3,950

The compensation amounts listed in this table are based on guidelines from the Judicial College. This publication is used by a solicitor when putting a value on a persons suffering. How much you can claim may vary depending on the circumstances of the accident. There are two Heads of Loss; special and general damages. The table only includes general damages. The table does not include any special damages that you may be entitled to.

Our personal injury claims team can provide you with a rough estimate of how much compensation you could be owed. We can also offer you free legal advice on claiming food allergy compensation. Call us today to learn more.

Types of Damages In Pub Restaurant Allergic Reaction Claims

If you successfully sue a restaurant for an allergic reaction in the UK, you will receive general damages. This is compensation for the loss of amenity, suffering and pain your allergic reaction has caused. Figures for general damages were illustrated in the table above. You may also receive a special damages compensation payout. This is compensation to reimburse you for any out of pocket expenses you had to pay as a result of your injuries.

Special damages you can receive include funds to cover any medical expenses, care expenses or travel expenses incurred. You can also claim for the cost of any income lost if you had to take time off work to recover from your allergic reaction injuries.

What Is A Pub Food Allergic Reaction?

An allergic reaction happens when a person consumes an ingredient they are allergic to. This can take place in any environment where a person can consume food or drink. A food allergic reaction is a medical condition that affects the body’s immune system. The immune system sees an otherwise harmless type of food as a threat. To get rid of the perceived “threat” the immune system releases chemicals including histamines. These chemicals cause unwanted food allergy symptoms.

What are the signs of an allergic reaction to food? A person who is suffering from a food allergy may experience the following symptoms:

  • Wheezing and breathing difficulties.
  • Difficulty swallowing.
  • A tingling and itchy sensation in and around the mouth.
  • Angioedema, which is a swelling around the mouth, throat and face.
  • Nausea, abdominal pains, vomiting and/or diarrhoea.
  • Symptoms that are similar to hay fever such as sneezing and itchy eyes.
  • A rash known as hives. Sometimes there will not be a raised rash but the skin will be red and itchy.

Unfortunately, a minority of people who have food allergies will experience anaphylaxis. This is a severe allergic reaction to food. The allergy sufferer can fall into a permanent coma or can die if they do not get immediate medical treatment. We will look at anaphylaxis reactions in more depth later.

Which Foods Can Cause Allergic Reactions?

People can suffer many different types of allergic reactions to food. However, there are 14 food allergens that food providers are legally required to declare to their customers.

To prevent food allergies, it is a restaurant’s responsibility to inform customers on their menu and food packaging if a menu item contains any of these known allergens:

  • Milk, often referred to as a dairy allergy
  • Tree nuts, which include Brazil nuts, hazelnuts and cashew nuts
  • Fish such as tuna or salmon
  • Shellfish, also referred to as a seafood allergy
  • Fruit, sufferers may be allergic to one specific type of fruit
  • Vegetables, sufferers may be allergic to one specific type of veg
  • Eggs
  • Peanuts
  • Soy
  • Cereals
  • Wheat
  • Gluten
  • Celery
  • Lupin
  • Mustard, such as those used in burgers in places like Wimpy
  • Sulphur

How soon after eating can you have an allergic reaction? This depends on the type of allergic reaction experienced. Let’s look at the different types of reactions below:

  • IgE food allergy: IgE food allergies are the most common allergic reaction type. They occur when the body produces the IgE antibody. The effects of the allergic reaction can be seen almost immediately.
  • A non-IgE mediated food allergy: A non-IgE mediated food allergy is when the IgE antibody does not cause the allergic reaction. How soon after eating can you have a non-IgE mediated food allergic reaction? Symptoms can appear several hours after eating. This makes non-IgE mediated food allergies harder to diagnose.
  • Mixed food allergies: A mixed food allergy is an allergic reaction that is caused by IgE antibodies and other chemicals.

What Foods Cause Anaphylactic Shock?

A small percentage of people who suffer from food allergies may experience an anaphylaxis reaction. This is also known as an anaphylactic shock. Foods that can cause minor allergic reactions to food, can also cause anaphylactic shocks.

If someone is experiencing anaphylaxis their condition can worsen rapidly. Anaphylaxis is life-threatening so the individual requires immediate emergency medical treatment. If you or someone else is suffering from anaphylaxis dial 999 right away for an ambulance. You can also administer first aid to help the person if you know how to.

What are the signs of a severe allergic reaction to food? A person suffering from anaphylactic shock may display the following symptoms:

  • Their breathing is fast and shallow
  • They find it difficult to breathe
  • Their chest becomes tight
  • A swollen tongue
  • Trouble speaking or swallowing
  • Feeling dizzy, anxious or faint
  • Their skin becomes clammy
  • They collapse and lose consciousness.

Facts About Food Allergy Statistics

The percentage of the UK’s population that suffers from a food allergy is 1-2% of adult. The rate of people who suffer from an allergy to a type of food in the UK is relatively high. It is estimated that 20% of the UK’s population suffers from one or more allergy. How many of these individuals have a food allergy? According to research conducted by the Food Standards Agency, 2 million people are living with a diagnosed food allergy. Moreover, 5-8% of children in the UK are allergic to one or more types of food.

One in 1,00 members of the United Kingdom’s population suffers from coeliac disease. Anaphylactic allergic reactions are life-threatening. In the two decades from 1992 – 2012, there was a 615% increase in the number of people who were admitted to hospital for anaphylaxis reaction treatment.

When To Inform Staff Of Your Food Allergies

Pubs, restaurants and other eateries are legally required to provide information about common allergens contained in their menu items. This will normally be on their menu and/or on the food packaging. If you suffer from a food allergy, should you also inform pub or restaurant staff of your condition? It is entirely up to you.

Is a restaurant liable for food allergies? A restaurant is only liable if they cause you to have an allergic reaction because of their negligence. For example, if they provide incorrect allergen information on a menu and you order the food thinking it is safe to eat, going on to suffer an allergic reaction could make them liable for your suffering.

What Allergens Could I Ask To Be Removed From My Meal?

You can ask for an ingredient to be taken out of your meal. However, if the pub is not able to do this then you would have to choose another meal. You can ask for any ingredient to be removed including;

  • Without milk
  • With no cheese
  • Without tomatoes
  • With no nuts
  • Without fish
  • With no eggs
  • Without oats
  • With no wheat.

Restaurants Duty Of Care To Remove Allergens

Can you sue a restaurant for an allergic reaction if you ask them to remove an ingredient and they do not? If you ask for an ingredient to be taken out and this is accepted, but the meal comes with the ingredient left in and you suffer an allergic reaction, then they could be liable.

Of course, not all ingredients can be removed from every menu item. For example, some food items are pre-prepared so it isn’t possible to remove an ingredient. In this case, you would have to choose another meal. Can you sue a pub or restaurant for an allergic reaction? If you request for an allergenic ingredient to be removed and the establishment fails to warn you that it cannot be, they may be held liable for an allergic reaction that you suffer as a result. In this instance, you may be eligible to claim compensation for a restaurant food allergic reaction.

If you believe that a pub is responsible for your allergic reaction injuries, call today. We can offer you free legal advice and help you determine if a pub is liable for your suffering or not. What will happen if we can see that you have legitimate grounds to claim compensation for an allergic reaction? Once our advisors have assessed your case and any evidence you have if they can see you have legitimate grounds to claim they can connect you with a personal injury solicitor.

 How Do I Make An Allergic Reaction Claim?

As we have previously stated, in order to have a valid allergic reaction injury compensation claim, you will need to prove that you suffered your allergic reaction due to a relevant third party breaching their duty of care. For example, if you have a dairy allergy and the pub listed a menu item as dairy-free when it actually contained milk, you could suffer an allergic reaction.

Gathering sufficient evidence could help you with your claim, as it could prove the extent of the harm you suffered and who was liable. Some examples of the evidence that could be used in your allergic reaction claim include:

  • A copy of your medical records stating you suffered an allergic reaction and any treatment you required.
  • Photographs of any visible symptoms, such as a rash.
  • A photograph of the ingredients list for the pub’s menu items.
  • The contact details of anyone who witnessed your allergic reaction, or the pub stating that a certain food item didn’t contain the allergen you mentioned when it did.

To find out if you may be eligible to make a compensation claim, or if you are wondering ‘How do I make an allergic reaction claim?’ you can contact our advisors.

What Allergen Information Should Restaurants Provide?

Should pubs and restaurants provide allergen information? Yes. They are legally required to inform customers if their menu items contain any of the 14 most common allergens. Eating establishments should provide information on any potential allergens used in food on the menu, or by staff informing customers or a notice telling you where the allergen information can be found. If the food is packaged there should also be a written allergen warning statement on the food packaging. Many restaurants highlight allergen warning information in bold or red to make it more visible to customers.

A pub’s duty of care is breached if they fail to provide adequate allergen information to customers. If you suffered a pub food allergy because they did not provide adequate allergen information can you sue? You may be able to sue a pub restaurant for an allergic reaction in these circumstances. Call today to enquire about claiming compensation for an allergic reaction in a restaurant today.

Food Allergy Legislation

As well as the Occupiers Liability Act 1957, there is specific legislation practised to protect people from unsafe food. Let’s look at this legislation in more depth below:

Article 28 of EC Regulation 178/2002 (General Food Law Regulation)

This piece of legislation provides a level of protection for food consumers.

Article 14 of EC Regulation 178/2002 (General Food Law Regulation)

This section looks at food that is sold must not be unsafe for human consumption. Food labels should contain information to stop any adviser health reactions.

Section 15 Of The Food Safety Act

This piece of legislation states that misrepresenting food, or the quality of food is an offence. If the contents of a food item are misrepresented, this can affect people with food allergies. The allergy sufferer may eat food that is not suitable for them and suffer an allergic reaction.

Section 14 Of The Food Safety Act 1990

This piece of legislation states that selling food that is not as described is an offence. If food is not as described, it is likely to mislead.

No Win No Fee Pub Food Allergic Reaction Claims

When making a claim for allergic reaction compensation you can either pursue the claim yourself or opt for a solicitor to represent your case. We always advise that having a solicitor make the claim on your behalf offers a wide array of advantages. But are you worried about paying upfront solicitor fees? Then you needn’t worry. A No Win No Fee solicitor could be a good option. This means that you will sign a Conditional Fee Agreement, whereby you agree that you will pay a success fee if your compensation claim is successful. If the solicitor does not win your claim you will not have to pay your success fee.

Many of our clients prefer to make a claim with a No Win No Fee solicitor because it involves less financial risk. It is also more affordable for many, as there are no upfront or hourly legal fees to pay for. Call us to discuss making a compensation claim for an allergic reaction after eating at a restaurant today.

Contact Us

If you have suffered a pub or restaurant food allergic reaction, you may be eligible to claim compensation for your injuries. To begin your compensation claim contact using our contact details below. If we can see that you are owed compensation, our panel of expert personal injury solicitors will start to work on your claim right away.

Contact us using the details below:

  • Call us on 0161 696 9685.
  • Email us using our online contact form.
  • Use our Live Chat widget to speak to a claims advisor directly.

Pub Food Allergy Resources

We hope you have found the advice in this pub food allergic reaction compensation guide helpful. You may also wish to consult these resources to learn more about claiming compensation in these related guides.

Allergic Reaction Injury Claims Guide – How Much Compensation Can I Claim? – How To Claim?

Pub / Bar Injury Personal Injury Claims Guide – How To Claim Compensation For An Accident In A Pub Or Bar? – View Amounts & Payouts

£14,500 Compensation Payout For Food Poisoning – Advice To Help Calculate Compensation Payouts

External Guides

Help and support for allergy sufferers from Allergy UK

Allergen guidance for food businesses, from the Food Standards Agency

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