Injured by Metal Wire in Food...

by Dev
(Houston, TX)

I went to a restaurant in Miami, Florida last week and ordered a shrimp dish. I found a metal wire in my food while chewing. It cut my mouth from inside. At that time I let the head chef know about it (manager was on vacation that day).

After that I still felt something sharp in my mouth, so I went to check in the restroom and I found a small piece of metal stuck in between my wisdom tooth and gum. I pulled it out. The head chef gave me the card of manager. After the incident they offered me another plate of food, but I couldn't eat it (due to pain and I was kind of scared).

For a week I've been having some pain near my wisdom tooth. I thought it would recover by itself so I took some painkillers and didn't pay attention to the pain. But now 9 days after the incident it is getting kind of annoying. I decided to call the manager and tell him about the incident before I go to a dentist.

I will have to skip my work to go to dentist. Also due to that incident, I am reluctant to go out to eat (this is not an exaggeration). Do you think I can get the money to pay for my dentist's bill and my lost wages?

Visitor Question:
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ANSWER for "Injured by Metal Wire in Food...":

Dev (Houston, TX):

There is a good possibility you may be reimbursed by the restaurant for the dental bills you are about to incur, as well as the wages you may lose during the time you will not be able to work. A lot will depend upon the cooperation of the restaurant’s management and ownership.

Call the manager and report your injury again. Tell the manager your injury can be verified by the chef on duty the day of your injury. Normally taking a friendly approach usually works best. Hopefully the management will act in a professional manner and cooperate.

If they are a large franchised operation they may tell you they will report the matter to their insurance company and someone from there will get in touch with you. That’s pretty standard. If you are in too much pain and discomfort to wait to hear from someone, tell the management that you are in too much pain to wait, and go ahead and have the dental work done.

A Claims Adjuster will probably contact you to take your recorded statement and then will proceed to reimburse you for the injury and lost wages, and any of your reasonable out of pocket expenses. They can include medications, parking fees, and the like as long as they are related to the injury. The adjuster should also agree to reimburse you for your lost wages.

Although there isn’t any law requiring an insurance company to pay an additional amount for pain and suffering, it would not be out of line to ask the adjuster to compensate you in a reasonable amount for the emotional distress the injury caused.

Presuming your dental bills are reasonable asking the adjuster for an additional amount of $1,500.00 dollars wouldn’t be inappropriate. Any amount between $500.00 and $1,500.00 would be normal under the circumstances.

Forget about relying upon your fear to go out to other restaurants. That’s pretty weak cause of action and will probably not be taken seriously.

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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