The Most Common Reasons Why Restaurants Get Sued

realEats.org pic

realEats.org
Image: realEats.org

Food-industry veteran Joel Feigenheimer, PhD, teaches courses on restaurant management. Drawing on his years of experience in the industry, Dr. Joel Feigenheimer serves as an expert witness in court cases relating to food-service issues.

Restaurants often find themselves the subject of litigation. The three most common reasons are slip-and-fall incidents, altercations, and food poisoning.

According to the National Restaurant Association, slip-and-fall cases are the most prevalent of the three. These frequently occur when a customer or employee encounters a slippery surface or flight of steps. Restaurants can reduce the occurrence of these claims by having a strong policy covering routine spills and placing warnings around slippery surfaces, as well as making sure steps are clearly visible.

Altercations in restaurants can happen, especially in establishments that serve alcohol. In these cases, the restaurant manager should contact the police immediately to ensure the safety of staff and customers.

Lastly, food-poisoning claims arise when there are toxic bacteria or foreign substances in food. Restaurants should do all that is possible to minimize food exposure to these risks.