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Can I Sue if Someone Has Made Me Sick?

In 2018, the flu epidemic has hit a milestone that it has not reached in more than ten years. Influenza was considered ‘widespread’ in 49 states. Inspectors temporarily shut down two Boca Raton restaurants due to health code violations.

As personal injury attorneys in Florida, we want to help you out. To answer the question directly, the question depends on how sick you are, and how you got sick.

Contagious DiseasesCan I sue if someone has made me sick?

If you are considering suing someone because they spread illness or disease to you, you should know that you can still win a case, but you have some very high hurdles to clear. Not only do you have to prove that someone or something specifically is the cause of your illness, but that they were negligent or intentional in their actions.

Proving that one person, and only that person, gave you a disease like the flu is challenging. Contagious diseases are all around you when they are in season. You would need to bring a considerable amount of evidence with you to show that it came from just one person.

There are some exceptions, however. Demonstrating that housing was unsafe or your workplace was hazardous is slightly easier than proving that someone coughed on you, and gave you a cold. Cramped workspaces or asbestos in the walls cause illnesses, and a competent attorney can establish this in court.

In addition, you would need to prove that the sick person acted negligently or intentionally. It is possible that someone with a cold uses hand sanitizer, coughs into the crook of their elbow, and maintains a reasonable distance between themselves and other people, but still spreads their disease. In these cases, lawsuits are not likely to be successful. If they did not take the necessary precautions, you may have a good reason to litigate.

If someone deliberately gave you a disease, then you may have grounds to sue them. For example, if a drug user shares an infected syringe that they know is affected, the infected person should contact a lawyer. Similarly, a boyfriend giving his partner mononucleosis after he is aware of his diagnosis may be successfully sued.

Sexually transmitted diseases are an exception. According to Florida law, the transmission of HIV is a criminal act. With STDs, proving who did it and negligence is generally easier.

Food Poisoning

Just like with contagious diseases, you need to prove that a specific restaurant caused food poisoning. If any time passes between you going to the restaurant and you get sick, your case will be a lot more difficult to win. When multiple people are sick, then your chances of winning improve. Product recalls or health agency warnings could be evidence that works in your favor.

People have settled with Chipotle after their E. Coli outbreak, and a woman is suing Costco because of a chicken sandwich that was unclean.

Restaurants have a duty of care towards you by their nature. This means that they need to have higher standards in taking care of their guests. A chef or manager are assumed to know that if the food they provide is undercooked, then guests will get sick. By their very nature, restaurants need to be clean.

Is It Worth It?

This question is entirely up to you. As mentioned above, there are certain difficulties when it comes to this area of law. You have to jump through many different hoops. If you are looking for an attorney, you would do well to find one that provides free consultations.

If you come down with something that is chronic or causes a big hospital bill, you may want to seek the help of a lawyer. Additionally, if you have missed time from work and are looking to recover lost wages, an experienced attorney can help.

Sometimes, filing a lawsuit is the only way that you can protect your rights. The Berman Law Group can help. Our team is tactful, trustworthy, and thorough. We have already assisted thousands of people in South Florida. The Berman Law Group wants to be your personal injury attorneys in Florida.