Serving Maryland and Washington D.C. 301-870-1200

Proving Food Poisoning in Your Maryland Lawsuits

Unfortunately, getting food poisoning is relatively common. So, how do you prove that you had food poisoning and that someone else is liable for your injuries? In many cases, it is possible to pursue a claim when you have food poisoning and can prove a connection to an establishment or event at which someone else was responsible for food handling and cooking.

If you suspect you have food poisoning, it is important to obtain medical treatment right away and confirm that the source of your illness is the food you consumed. Based on this, it is helpful to have a doctor who can provide the evidence needed in the event the case goes to trial. In addition, you also need to seek advice from a skilled Maryland personal injury attorney who can help preserve evidence and ensure you have a strong case for liability.

Liability Theories in Food Poisoning Incidents

In general, liability for food poisoning can be considered a defective product case since you were sold a “defective” product, the food, which caused your injuries. When your attorney is preparing a case on your behalf, some of the more common legal theories argued in food poisoning cases are:

  • Product Liability: Many states, including Maryland, have strict liability when it comes to product defects. This means you are not required to show that the supplier or manufacturer of contaminated foods did not exercise proper care when making or distributing the product. You are only required to prove the food you ate was contaminated and that is what caused your illness.
  • Negligence: You can also bring a claim for negligence that says the defendants failed to exercise reasonable care in the making or distribution of the product that made you sick.
  • Breach of Warranty: Another option is to include a cause of action for breach of warranty. Many states have requirements for products to meet minimum standards, known as implied warranties. Contamination of a food product could constitute a breach of that warranty. There could be a violation of express warranties too, such as a food product that is labeled as “triple-washed,” yet there was still contamination caused by not thoroughly washing the food.

Who is Liable for My Food Poisoning?

Depending on the situation, there could be multiple people liable for food contamination, and you have to trace it to the source. Everyone involved in the chain of distribution or after the point of contamination can be held liable. Common parties named include:

  • Food processing companies like a farm or slaughterhouse
  • Suppliers
  • Wholesalers
  • Distributors

Restaurants are also included as they also have a duty to not serve contaminated food. Be cautious of restaurants that try to avoid liability by claiming their employee is at fault and acted against company policy, like by failing to wash his or her hands. The restaurant is likely still going to be held at fault since making and serving was within the person’s regular job duties.

Retaining a Maryland Personal Injury Attorney

If you have suffered injuries due to food poisoning, contact the Law Offices of Robert R. Castro at 301-870-1200 to schedule a consultation.