Can I Sue For E. Coli Poisoning?

e coli

What You’ll Learn Reading This Article:

  • The kind of evidence you might need when building an E. coli poisoning case
  • The origins and symptoms of E. coli poisoning
  • The benefits of suing for E. coli poisoning

E. coli poisoning is unpleasant and dangerous. While many cases of E. coli poisoning are mild, some lead to serious health complications, including kidney failure and possible death. According to the CDC, there are over 73,000 cases of E. coli poisoning every year in the United States. If you’ve experienced a serious E. coli infection, you should consider hiring a personal injury lawyer to sue for damages so that you can receive compensation for medical bills, lost income, pain and suffering, and more.

Can I Sue for E. Coli Poisoning?

The short answer is yes. If you can prove a connection between the poisoning and contaminated food, you have a good chance of building a case and receiving compensation.

You can prove a connection with evidence. Examples of evidence include:

  • Proof that you became seriously ill with E. coli poisoning that was contracted from contaminated food or beverage
  • Proof that you consumed the food or beverage at a location, or from a manufacturer, that has had a recent E. coli outbreak
  • Proof that the E. coli bacterium that made you sick is the same as the bacterium that made others sick (this evidence is relevant if you are trying to connect your case to an outbreak). Evidence of the specific bacterium that made you sick can usually be collected from a stool sample.

Regardless of whether you decide to pursue legal action regarding your E. coli poisoning, it is a good idea to report your infection to the local health department. They can help determine if you are part of an E. coli outbreak. If you are connected to an outbreak, you have a greater chance of leveraging a strong liability case against the manufacturer, packager, or distributor of the food or beverage that contained the bacteria.

Sources of E. Coli Poisoning

The Escherichia coli (E. coli) bacteria are found in the intestines of many humans and animals. While E. coli infections can occur in many ways, some of the most common situations that may produce an E. coli infection include:

  • Consuming ground meat – Packaged ground meat often contains meat from multiple animals, raising the risk of E. coli contamination. Contamination often occurs during packaging or storage, or if meat is undercooked.
  • Unpasteurized Dairy Products – Drinking unpasteurized milk (or consuming products that use unpasteurized milk as an ingredient) carries the risk of E. coli infection.
  • Unpasteurized Juice – This product carries the same risks as unpasteurized milk.
  • Contaminated fruits and vegetables – Produce can contract E. coli from contaminated water sources or runoff from livestock farms.

Symptoms of E. Coli Poisoning

If you’re beginning to build a potential E. coli poisoning case, take note of the symptoms you’re experiencing. The most common symptom is hemorrhagic colitis, which can cause abdominal pain, cramps, a fever, and a headache. Severe cases can lead to kidney failure caused by hemolytic-uremic syndrome (HUS). E. coli can be especially debilitating if contracted by children, the elderly, or individuals with compromised immune systems.

Benefits of Suing for E. coli poisoning

The benefits of seeking legal action concerning your E. coli poisoning include:

  • Receiving compensation for lost income, medical bills, and mental/emotional distress
  • Encouraging better safety practices for food manufacturers and distributors
  • Encouraging investment by companies into better health and safety practices (settlements often come with a promise to increase investments in this area)
  • A greater chance at securing the highest compensation possible from the involved corporation or organization (this is particularly true if you decide to file your legal case promptly after experiencing the illness)

If you or a loved one has experienced illness because of E. coli poisoning, you deserve to receive compensation and hold responsible parties accountable.

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