If I choked on a stick that was in a store brand bag of trail mix that I bought from the store, can I sue?

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If I choked on a stick that was in a store brand bag of trail mix that I bought from the store, can I sue?

They wasked for the bag but I wouldn’t give it to them so they took a picture of the bag,, the reciept the stick and what was left of the trial mix.

Asked on June 4, 2012 under Bankruptcy Law, New Hampshire

Answers:

S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

If you did not require medical treatment, you will recover little or nothing.  If you required medical treatment, you have a claim against the store and the manufacturer of the trail mix.  Obtain your medical bills, medical reports, and documentation of any wage loss.  Your personal injury claim should include these items.  File your personal injury claim with the insurance carriers for the manufacturer of the trail mix and the store where you purchased the item.  Prior to filing a lawsuit, it may be possible to settle the case with the insurance carriers for both the manufacturer and store.  Compensation for the medical bills is straight reimbursement.  Compensation for wage loss is straight reimbursement.  The medical reports will document the nature and extent of your injury and will be used to determine compensation for pain and suffering, which is an amount in addition to the medical bills.  If the case is settled with both insurance carriers (manufacturer and store), NO lawsuit is filed.  If you are dissatisfied with settlement offers from the insurance carriers, reject the settlement offers and file your lawsuit for negligence and strict liability against the manufacturer and store.  This area of law is products liability.  The manufacturer is liable for negligence which is the failure to exercise due care (that degree of care that a reasonable manufacturer would have exercised to produce a product that is not defective).  The store is liable even if it could not have known the product was defective.  Strict liability imposes liability whether or not due care was exercised.  Negligence and strict liability are separate causes of action (claims) in your lawsuit against the manufacturer and store.  If the case is settled with one of the insurance carriers (store or manufacturer), but not both, only name the party with whom the case has not settled as a defendant in your lawsuit.  If the case has not settled with either the store or manufacturer, name both as defendants in your lawsuit.  If the case is NOT settled, you will need to file your lawsuit prior to the expiration of the applicable statute of limitations or you will lose your rights forever in the matter.


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