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Sickness and diarrhoea on holiday

How Simpson Millar can help you claim for holiday food poisoning

Head of International Travel Law Nick Harris

Author:
Dated: 15th September 2015

Has food poisoning turned your holiday into a nightmare? It's worrying how many people become ill during or after their holidays, particularly if they've visited hot countries.

You might have recently suffered from food poisoning after such a holiday. Or perhaps you'd like the peace of mind of knowing that, if the worst comes to the worst once you're away on that exotic break, there's a way of claiming compensation.

You can seek compensation from your booking agents, or from the hotel whose poor hygiene standards probably contributed to your illness.

So here's Simpson Millar's easy digest of how we can help you claim for holiday food poisoning. Once you've spoken to our friendly Travel Law specialists, we will:

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Find out who was liable for your illness, based on what you can tell us

Under current international package tour regulations, both the hotel you stayed in AND the agent through which you booked your holiday are responsible for your wellbeing during your time as a guest

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We'll compose the 'Letter of Claim'

As soon as we know the responsible party ('the Defendant') we'll formally write them a Letter of Claim. This will clearly set out:

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1. The dates and location of your holiday

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2. The symptoms you suffered while you were there, and on returning home

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3. Diagnoses from doctors at your resort (if applicable) and at home

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4. Any necessary hospitalisation

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5. Whether you had time off work because of your illness

The Letter of Claim will also describe in legal terms where we, on your behalf, assert that the booking agent, travel firm and/or hotel are at fault. The Defendants must reply within 42 days, after which they have 6 months for their own investigations. When 6 months are up, they must either reject or agree to your claim.

What if the Defendant says they're not liable?


For the best chance of a successful claim:

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Get as much evidence as you can. Take photos of poor food and other areas of the hotel where hygiene appears substandard

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If possible, make notes about the food and drink you consume and the hygiene standards in the restaurant/buffet. Even if the food seems okay while you're eating it, its later effects could spell disaster

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Find out if other guests have suffered with similar symptoms. If so, ask for their contact details, which will help endorse your claim

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Tell the hotel and the holiday rep about your symptoms, and request a copy of any illness report. It's important to ensure the hotel management are fully aware of your condition

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Seek medical help while you're at the resort, and follow up by attending your own GP once you're home – even if you're feeling a little better

What else you should know:

Many people don't realise there are rigid regulations in place to ensure that, if illness strikes, they can seek compensation. And Simpson Millar's travel solicitors have the knowledge and skills to negotiate this complex area – giving you the very best chance of benefiting from legal protection.

Get in touch for a chat about how we can help you by filling in our quick, no obligation enquiry form and we will call you back or you can call us directly on 0808 145 1353.