Can I Seek Compensation if I Contract Food Poisoning?

The history of Jasper County goes back to 1632 and so has a special place in Georgia’s history. Although the city still has a small town feel, residents still suffer from the same problems as those who live in busy cities. This can include everything from bicycle accidents and car crashes to swimming pool accidents and food poisoning. According to data published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), as many as 128,000 people are hospitalized for contracting foodborne illnesses every year. Food poisoning can be both painful and expensive, and in rare cases, deadly, so if you live in Monticello or somewhere else in Jasper County and recently contracted a foodborne illness, it is critical to speak with an experienced personal injury lawyer who can help you seek compensation from the responsible parties.

Food Poisoning Defined

Food poisoning is a term used to describe a number of different illnesses caused by ingesting improperly prepared, stored, and cooked foods, which can carry dangerous bacteria, viruses, and parasites, such as:

  • Salmonella;
  • E. coli;
  • Listeria;
  • Giardia; and
  • Shigella.

Most food poisoning is contracted through the consumption of tainted animal products, such as meat and eggs, which can cause specific and often dangerous, symptoms, including:

  • Vomiting;
  • Diarrhea;
  • Abdominal cramps;
  • Fever;
  • Dehydration; and
  • Headaches.

These kinds of symptoms usually occur between 12 and 72 hours of ingesting contaminated food or drink and can last up to a week. Food poisoning can have serious repercussions, especially for children, the elderly, and those with compromised immune systems.

Potentially Liable Parties

The Georgia Food Act, specifically prohibits slaughterhouses, processing plants, grocery stores, and restaurants form producing, storing, delivering, or selling adulterated foods, including:

  • Products that contain foreign objects not intended for human consumption;
  • Products that contain unsafe levels of pesticides;
  • Misbranded or mislabeled products;
  • The meat or products of a diseased animal; and
  • Products that became contaminated as a result of preparation in unsanitary conditions.

Under Georgia law, food manufacturers and sellers have a legal responsibility to properly store, prepare, transport, and sell food products. This means that any one of a number of individuals or entities can be held legally responsible for a failure to adhere to these laws, including:

  • Corporate farmers who allowed produce to become contaminated;
  • Raw meat processors;
  • Restaurant owners who did not inspect, refrigerate, or properly store, cook, or handle food products;
  • Grocery store owner or managers who sold expired food or beverages or failed to prevent the sale of contaminated food products;
  • Food companies whose owners were careless in regulating the mass production of canned or sealed food or drink products; and
  • Trucking companies that did not refrigerate or store food products properly.

Georgia residents who suffered from food poisoning will need to establish that a food company or restaurant was responsible for their illnesses. In some cases, however, a plaintiff can obtain compensation under a negligence per se claim, which only requires that plaintiffs demonstrate that state law prohibiting the sale of unadulterated food was violated.

Contact a Dedicated Jasper County Personal Injury Attorney Today

If you live Monticello or somewhere else in Jasper County and recently contracted a foodborne illness, please contact The Angell Law Firm, LLC at (770) 217-4954 to schedule a free consultation with an experienced personal injury attorney.