In addition to the global pandemic due to the COVID-19 illness, the United States is also facing a serious salmonella outbreak from onions, and most recently, peaches. The red, yellow, white, and sweet onion salmonella outbreak last month infected nearly 1,208 people across the United States and Canada, which resulted in 85 hospitalizations.

Just like it is your legal right to pursue compensation after another’s negligent actions injured you in a car accident, you may also pursue legal action if a company’s negligence caused you to suffer from salmonella poisoning. If you or a loved one contracted salmonella from ingesting contaminated food, you may be able to recover financial compensation for your losses. To learn more, continue reading.

Visit the Doctor

If you believe you are suffering from salmonellosis, it is likely you are suffering from any or all of the following symptoms: fever, diarrhea, severe headaches, stomach cramps, and vomiting. Even if you feel you may be able to “power through” the symptoms, it is vital to seek medical attention to prevent serious complications or long-term harm. 

Seeking medical attention will help you combat and treat symptoms and will allow for testing to detect if you are suffering from a Salmonella infection. 

Report Your Illness

Once the presence of the salmonella bacteria is confirmed, a doctor should report your illness to your local health department. Ideally, illness should be reported within one week of developing symptoms. If you are unable to contact your local health department or in case of an emergency, you may also report your salmonella infection directly to your state office. 

At this point, it is also important to create a written account of how you may have contracted salmonella poisoning. Consider what you ate, when you ate, where you ate, and how the food was prepared prior to experiencing symptoms (symptoms usually appear within 6 to 48 hours). 

Speak with an Attorney

After you’ve received a confirmed salmonella diagnosis, you have a case. “Under the law, food is a product, so contaminated food would be considered a defective product,” notes salmonella attorney Jory Lange, “there are food safety laws in place that require the food processor or manufacturer, as well as the restaurant or retailer to exercise reasonable care when handling food that’s for sale.”

Speaking with an attorney who specializes in food contamination cases can help you explore your legal options for recovering compensation for various damages. If you required hospitalization and had to take time off of work due to a salmonella infection, you may be able to recover for your medical costs and lost wages through a defective product lawsuit.

Understanding Your Rights Under Law

After you or a loved one suffered from salmonella poisoning, you have the legal right to pursue compensation from the responsible party. Defendants in a salmonella lawsuit could range from the restaurant that served the contaminated food, a supermarket that sold the contaminated food, or the manufacturer of the food. 

To learn more about how you can recover financial compensation after a salmonella poisoning diagnosis, speak with an experienced food safety lawyer in your area.