Food Poisoning Case Heard in Florida

When you go to a restaurant, you expect the food you are served to be safe. However, this does not always happen. The United States District Court of the Middle District of Florida heard a case related to food poisoning. If you get sick or injured at a restaurant, an experienced South Florida personal injury attorney can help you to hold the responsible parties accountable.

Standards of Negligence

In order to recover damages, plaintiffs must generally prove that their injuries were caused by another’s negligence. Negligence has several elements: first, the plaintiff must prove that the defendant owed them a duty of care. In order to owe someone a duty, you must have a certain kind of relationship. Businesses have a duty to their patrons to keep them reasonably safe and warn them of non-obvious hazards that they are aware of. Thus, proving that there was a duty of care should not be an issue in this case.

The second thing that must be proven is that the defendant breached their duty of care, which usually means that they acted unreasonably under all of the circumstances. Part of this element also requires that the plaintiff show evidence of what the standard of care for the particular industry or circumstances are. This can often be the most difficult part for plaintiffs as sometimes the business will be acting reasonably but accidents still happen.

Plaintiffs also must show that the breach caused an injury and that the injury resulted in damages. Plaintiffs in personal injury actions can recover damages for things like medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other losses. In some cases the spouse of the injured person can also claim damages for loss of consortium.

This Case and Damages

This case, however, is mostly focused on damages and accessing evidence to determine damages. The plaintiff in this case has chronic liver disease. He went to a restaurant owned by the defendant where he ate raw oysters and then soon after came down with a severe bacterial infection. The plaintiff is alleging that the defendant breached the duty of care that they owed because they did not properly warn the plaintiff of the risks of eating raw oysters, especially for those with liver disease. The plaintiff is claiming that the defendant violated Florida state laws around negligence, strict liability, and breach of warranty.

The instant case involves a small, though potentially important, issue. The plaintiff ate at the restaurant 2012. Their final complaint was filed in 2015. The trial is scheduled at the end of 2018, and the defendant wants to depose the plaintiff to ask him about the current state of his health. The plaintiff does not want to undergo the deposition. Thus, this decision is about whether the court will compel the plaintiffs to do the deposition.

Of course, the underlying issue is about the amount of damages caused by the defendants alleged breach. The plaintiff is alleging that his symptoms are the same as they were in 2015 when the complaint was filed. The court in this case held that the plaintiff and his wife were compelled to undergo the deposition for one hour by phone, as it was not duplicative since it is new and updated information.

Contact an Experienced South Florida Personal Injury Attorney Today!

The experienced South Florida personal injury attorneys at Donaldson & Weston can help you get what you are owed. Contact us by using the contact form on this website or call 772-266-555 or 561-299-3999 to schedule your free consultation today.

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