Can I Sue for Food Poisoning in Nevada?
Every year, one in six Americans comes down with a case of food poisoning. Usually the effects of food poisoning are minor and do not require hospitalization.
However in some cases—often in the elderly or immuno-compromised—food poisoning can become a serious medical emergency. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimate that food-borne diseases cause approximately 76 million illnesses, 325,000 hospitalizations, and 5,000 deaths in the United States each year.1
If you or someone you love were a victim of food poisoning in Nevada, our caring Nevada personal injury lawyers may be able to get you compensation for:
- Medical bills,
- Lost wages,
- Pain and suffering, or
- Wrongful death.
Causes of Food Contamination
Food contamination can happen at several different points—from the farm to the table. Some food contamination occurs at the harvest of the food. For example, if a person picking your produce did not wash his or her hands after using the bathroom, you could get sick especially if the produce was rinsed poorly or not at all.
Other cases of food poisoning occur because of contamination during production or processing. This could include bad butchering of meat or a production line introducing a harmful micro-organism to flour.
Food contamination can also happen during preparation or serving. This usually results from cross-contamination from unwashed hands. The remaining way that food can become contaminated is through poor storage: Unrefrigerated food invites harmful microbes to multiply.
Generally, you are not eligible to receive compensation for your food poisoning if you became ill because you stored food improperly. However, illnesses caused by problems with the manufacturing of your food—or its preparation if it was prepared outside your home—may be compensable.
Types of Food Poisoning
Food poisoning can result from a variety of microorganisms. Common types of food poisoning leading to hospitalization in the United States include:
Salmonella poisoning, which can last up to a week. Salmonella is the most fatal type of food poisoning in the United States. Generally, a salmonella infection will begin 12 to 72 hours after exposure to contaminated food.
E. Coli poisoning usually comes from eating undercooked meat. While a healthy person can often fight off e. coli poisoning at home, young people and the elderly may die from it.
Norovirus typically contaminates food when food service workers come to work sick. It can cause severe diarrhea and dehydration.
Some of the people who can be most vulnerable to food poisoning are young children, the elderly, and the immunocompromised.
When people are poisoned by their food due to negligence, Nevada state law allows them to collect the full amount of their damages. This holds true even if an immune condition or age caused them to became sicker than the average person. Talk to a Clark County attorney for more information on what compensation you may be entitled to receive.
Making Your Food Poisoning Case in Nevada
It can sometimes be difficult for people to prove that they were given food poisoning by a specific food or establishment. Because of this, food poisoning victims should keep meticulous records and talk to a Las Vegas lawyer as soon as possible.
In some situations—such as widespread food contamination leading to a product recall—it can be relatively easy for victims to show where their food poisoning came from. In other circumstances, you may need the services of your Clark County attorney to help you prove why and how you became sick.
Were you a victim of serious food poisoning? Call us for help...
For a free consultation with one of our experienced Nevada product liability attorneys call us at 702-DEFENSE (702-333-3673) or complete the form on this page. If the incident was in California, please visit our page on filing a food poisoning lawsuit in California.
The more time passes the harder it can be to prove the cause of your food poisoning. For the best results, call us today.
- Paul S. Mead, Laurence Slutsker, Vance Dietz, Linda F. McCaig, Joseph S. Bresee, Craig Shapiro, Patricia M. Griffin, and Robert V. Tauxe, Food-Related Illness and Death in the United States, Volume 5, Number 5—October 1999.