Bit into a screw in my food...

by Robin
(Oakbrook, Il, USA)

I bit into a huge metal screw in my food while eating at the Cheesecake Factory. It cut my mouth but also caused a lot of mental distress. This happened 2 weeks ago. They are wanting to do a settlement with me. What is a good settlement amount for this kind of incident? Thanks.

Visitor Question:
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ANSWER for "Bit into a screw in my food...":

Robin (Oakbrook, IL, USA):

From the facts you present, there is no doubt the restaurant is liable for your injuries. They have a legal duty of care to protect their customers from undue harm and injury. In your case, they wholly failed.

The traditional manner of estimating settlement amounts is to multiply your medical bills by 2-3x, or higher if the injuries are serious. Doing so is meant to take into account your medical bills, out of pocket expenses, lost wages, and your emotional distress, also called mental anguish or pain and suffering.

In your case, you may not be happy with the reality of the settlement. Too often people believe cases like glass, bugs, screws, etc. in their food should be worth a lot of money; especially because the defendant is a large corporation. Unfortunately, that's not usually the case. Instead, unless you have some permanent damages, you may have to be satisfied with a multiple of your medical bills.

Let's say your medical bills were $1000.00. In this case you would demand from the insurance company the amount of $3000.00 dollars. You could negotiate down from there and arrive at a settlement somewhere in between.

The above is general information. Laws change frequently, and across jurisdictions. You should get a personalized case evaluation from an attorney licensed in your state. Find a local attorney to give you a free case review here, or call (888) 647-2490.

Best of luck,

Judge Calisi

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