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Marler Blog Providing Commentary on Food Poisoning Outbreaks & Litigation

Houlihan’s Hepatitis A Class Action Lawsuit Continues

I spoke with Paul Dailing of the Chronicle yesterday about the status of the Class Action (Full Story Here).  The defendants had moved to dismiss the case, claiming that my clients were not injured as a result of the restaurant allowing a Hepatitis A infected employee to work, thereby exposing some 4,000 customers to Hepatitis A.  A few excerpts:

Attorney William Marler of the Seattle-based law firm Marler Clark, which specializes in food cases, filed the lawsuit Jan. 26 on behalf of Geneva resident Rebecca Johnson and her family.

“We filed it as a class action, but ultimately the judge has to certify it as a class,” Marler said.

“The damages are the cost of the shot if they actually had to pay for it, the time away from work or the time away from your family, the inconvenience of having to come in for that and the worry of waiting for weeks to see if the [immunoglobulin] shot worked,” Marler said. Marler said damages in similar cases have resulted in payments of $250 to $400 to each customer.

“Exactly what a court or a jury would award a class action like this is going to be depending upon what a jury thinks … what that is worth,” he said.

Interesting article from this mornings LA TImes:

Supervisors can’t require hepatitis A vaccinations

The county cannot legally require food workers to be vaccinated against hepatitis A, and overseeing a large-scale vaccination program for up to 400,000 workers would be complicated and expensive, according to a county health report issued this week.  The report was produced for the county Board of Supervisors after concern in recent months about a series of hepatitis outbreaks at restaurants and catered events across Los Angeles.  The report concluded that only the state could require vaccinations for food workers.