Las Vegas, NV Food Poisoning Lawyer
As many Las Vegas residents know, dealing with the aftereffects of food poisoning can be much more severe than a simple upset stomach or embarrassing bathroom trips. According to the US Department of Health, it is estimated that there are some 48 million cases of foodborne illness in the US every year. What is especially concerning is that these cases of food poisoning result in over 125,000 hospitalizations annually as well.
Clearly, food poisoning is a serious problem that affects both the residents and the thousands of annual visitors to Nevada. If you or a family member has gotten sick from contaminated food, you may be able to receive compensation for the harm caused, especially if the adverse effects were serious and you required medical treatment or time off work to recover.
A free consultation with one of the Las Vegas food poisoning lawyers at Richard Harris Law Firm can help you better understand your legal options. Call or text our legal team 24/7 at 702-745-8555.
Causes of Food Poisoning
As it is something essential for life, we may take food for granted. We may go about our daily routine under the assumption that whatever we eat is safe. While in most cases that might be true, the unfortunate reality is that some bad practices can make our food unsafe.
Unsafe food practices include:
- Undercooked food
- Contaminated surfaces
- Improper food storage
- Contact with raw meat
- Uncleaned vegetables
These dangerous circumstances can happen anywhere in the supply chain – such as the farm where the food was cultivated, the packaging facilities, the warehouse, the grocery store, or the restaurant where a dish is prepared.
Figuring out where the food was contaminated is essential in proving liability, or fault, in food poisoning cases. A personal injury lawyer with experience in handling Las Vegas food poisoning cases can properly investigate your case to identify all involved parties and hold the at-fault party liable for their negligence.
Types of Food Poisoning
Food poisoning happens when a contaminant, such as bacteria, a virus, mold, parasites, toxins, or an allergen, enters the food and causes sickness. Not all types of contaminants are the same, and they each can have different effects on the immune system.
While there are thousands of contaminants that can cause food poisoning, here are some of the most common seen by our personal injury lawyers:
- E. coli – Contamination causes a variety of symptoms such as bloody diarrhea, vomiting, and cramps; these symptoms are usually seen within the first four days after ingestion
- Listeria – Symptoms of a listeria infection can take weeks to show up and can include a stiff neck, fever, and muscle aches
- Salmonella – After exposure to salmonella, symptoms usually appear within the first few days and can include fever, diarrhea, and vomiting
- Clostridium perfringens – This contaminant can cause symptoms such as diarrhea and cramps; the effects are often seen within the first 24 hours and tend to be short-lived
Most cases of food poisoning in Las Vegas are minor and may go undetected, but there is still a risk of serious complications, including kidney failure, chronic arthritis, brain and nerve damage, and death.
Certain groups, such as young children, seniors, and pregnant women, are more at risk for contracting food poisoning and having more serious effects. Listeria, for example, has been known to harm unborn babies in the womb, leading to miscarriage, stillbirth, neurological damage, and developmental delays.
High-risk foods for foodborne illnesses
Some foods are known to pose a higher risk of food poisoning than others. These can include:
- Undercooked beef and chicken
- Raw egg yolk
- Unpasteurized milk and cheese
- Unwashed produce
- Deli meat
People who are at a higher risk of food poisoning are often cautioned to limit or avoid the above foods to protect themselves from contracting food poisoning. However, even a person who is careful and takes all the precautions can still get sick due to someone else’s negligent actions.
Food Safety Rules in Las Vegas
The Southern Nevada Health District has a series of regulations that have been put in place for food establishments. These standards were created to ensure food safety and reduce the risk of food poisoning.
Nevada’s regulations include standards regarding:
- Appropriate food temperature
- Food handling sanitation
- Safe packaging
- Equipment sanitation
- Food storage
Unfortunately, these essential standards often go unmet. This might happen due to insufficient training, understaffing, or carelessness. Regardless, this is no excuse for carelessness. Workers and establishments that do not follow these safety measures are putting their customers at risk of food poisoning and should be held accountable for their actions.
How to Work With a Las Vegas Food Poisoning Lawyer
When we travel and eat at many different places, it can be difficult to pinpoint where we came into contact with the contaminated food. This can make handling a food poisoning case especially challenging. However, if foodborne illness has caused you to suffer financial losses or other damages, you may be able to recover compensation.
After a free consultation, your personal injury lawyer can investigate your food poisoning case to prove the following facts:
- Your illness was caused by contaminated food
- The liable party or parties’ negligence caused your illness
- You suffered damages due to your illness
If there are other people who have contracted food poisoning from the same establishment or outbreak, you may be able to join a class-action lawsuit against the liable party.
There are some actions you can take after getting sick that can strengthen your case as well. It is important to prove the extent of your illness and the source of the food poisoning.
- Keep receipts of your activities and meals
- Visit a doctor to verify your diagnosis and symptoms
- Consult a lawyer to find out your next step
Of course, each individual Nevada food poisoning case will differ in circumstances and details. That is why a consultation with an experienced food poisoning lawyer with Richard Harris Law Firm in Las Vegas can help. Once learning your story, he or she will be in a position to provide more detailed legal advice so you can determine your next steps.
Let the Team at Richard Harris Law Firm Help
Coping with the effects and medical expenses associated with serious food poisoning cases can be both exhausting and overwhelming for the victim and his or her family. You may feel as though you will never be able to hold the liable party accountable for the harm caused. Nevertheless, you can have hope.
If you or a loved one has been the victim of food poisoning in Las Vegas, Nevada, we want you to know that Richard Harris Law Firm is here to help. Our attorneys have been there for countless families across Nevada for over 40 years.
Our team includes experienced and compassionate attorneys who are ready to stand on your side and fight on your behalf. We are prepared to take on the legal responsibilities and communicate with insurance companies so you don’t have to.
A free, no-obligation consultation with one of the Las Vegas food poisoning lawyers at our firm can help to put your mind at ease. The Richard Harris legal team is available 24/7 by phone or text to get you the help you need. Please don’t hesitate to contact us for a free consultation to learn how we can help you recover fair compensation after suffering food poisoning.