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Over 500,000 people suffer from serious food poisoning in the UK every year and over four million others suffer from less severe food poisoning symptoms which may include diarrhoea, vomiting, fever, stomach cramps, nausea and fatigue. In most cases both health problems and food poisoning symptoms last for only a few days, however, in other cases the problems can be more serious and long lasting particularly if the victim is very old or very young. Numerous fatalities in at risk groups occur every year in the UK as a result of infection by E coli and salmonella. If you have suffered from illness caused by a negligent 3rd party, you can instruct a food poisoning solicitor to take legal action to claim compensation on your behalf.

Chemical contaminants and naturally-occurring toxicants in food may cause food poisoning that gives rise to food poisoning compensation claims. There are specific defined levels for particular contaminants or naturally occurring toxicity in food which determine the maximum level of contamination which is acceptable. Any breach of these regulations may lead to action being taken against a producer of food.

If you have suffered from food poisoning as a result of substandard produce then you may be able to claim compensation. For free advice on no win no fee* compensation claims just use the helpline or email our offices and a member of the Solicitors Regulation Authority panel of personal injury experts will telephone you with no obligation. If after speaking to one of our food poisoning solicitors you decide to proceed no further then you are quite at liberty to do so and you will not be charged for our legal advice.

Safety regulations in the UK require that food should be safe to eat and complies with a wide range of product and process specification standards in order to reduce the risk of food poisoning. The Consumer Protection Act 1987 ensures that food products are the subject of strict liability which enables a consumer who is injured as a result of a 'defective' product to claim compensation for food poisoning from a 'producer' without needing to prove negligence. A defective product exists when the safety of the product is not such as persons generally are entitled to expect.

Salmonella - Campylobacter - E coli 0157 - Listeria

Dangerous micro-organisms including Salmonella, Campylobacter, E coli 0157, and Listeria, are thought to be responsible for most food poisoning symptoms that occur for a variety of reasons including inadequate cooking, improper storage, cross contamination and poor hygiene standards in production or preparation.

Food Safety Act 1990

The governing legislation for this area of law is the Food Safety Act 1990 which defines what food is, how it should be handled, stored and sold, who is responsible for enforcing the hygiene regulations and what action can be taken to prevent poisoning. If you have problems involving food poisoning symptoms you should report it to the Environmental Health Officer who will investigate and take action against the offending outlet which can include closing the premises or issuing improvement notices. All suppliers including non profit organisations must conform with the legislation which specifies that food is illegal and must not be sold if :-

  • It is unsafe by reason of contamination by dangerous organisms.
  • It is unreasonable to expect it to be eaten. This can be very subjective i.e. is blue cheese mouldy and unfit and does hung game breach the regulations.
  • It is incorrectly described - such as selling one type of beer as another even by accident when connecting the barrels to the pumps.

The Food Safety Act 1990 also includes the following:-

    It is an offence to make dangerous produce intended to be sold for human consumption.

    It is an offence to falsely describe, advertise or present food for sale

    It is an offence to supply produce for human consumption which is :-

    • dangerous to health
    • unfit for human consumption
    • contaminated
    • not of acceptable nature, substance or quality demanded by the purchaser

    no win no fee* Compensation Claims

    If you, or a member of your family, have suffered from food poisoning symptoms you may be able to bring a claim for compensation against either the manufacturer or the seller. In addition to being compensated for the general pain and suffering, you are also entitled to claim for time off work, lost wages and the cost of medical treatment and medicines.

    Where there has been an outbreak of food poisoning which affects a large number of people it is often relatively easy to establish liability and in these circumstances it may be possible to take a class action or multi party action. For legal advice at no cost from a product liability solicitor just use the helpline or email our offices and a lawyer will telephone you with no obligation.

    Food Poisoning Solicitors

    Our food poisoning solicitors who offer legal advice at no charge are members of the Solicitors Regulation Authority panel of personal injury experts. We operate the no win no fee* scheme otherwise known as a conditional fee agreement. No legal charge is payable unless the legal case is won and the client obtains an award of compensation. In the event that the legal claim is lost there is no charge made to the client. If you would like free advice just use the helpline or complete the contact form and a personal injury lawyer will speak to you on the telephone without further obligation.



    *Legal Information

    The author of the substantive medical writing on this website is Dr. Christine Traxler MD whose biography can be read here