What Are Your Rights After an Allergic Reaction At Starbucks?

Have you suffered an allergic reaction at Starbucks after eating their food or drinking one of their beverages? This could happen for a number of reasons. When choosing what to eat in cafes, you may neglect to check the appropriate allergen information. If so, you could be liable for your own injuries.

However, staff may give you incorrect information about allergens in the food, causing you to consume something that triggers an allergic reaction. You might be eligible to claim compensation if the allergic reaction took place because a cafe acted negligently.

UK Law could help you claim compensation if you have suffered from an allergic reaction that was not your fault.

Allergic reaction at StarbucksTo see if you can begin your allergic reaction claim for compensation, contact UK Law today. We will be happy to consult with you in-depth about your ordeal and offer you free legal advice about claiming compensation.

And if you have evidence of a valid claim and are owed compensation, our panel of lawyers could start working on your claim.

Get In Touch With Our Team

To see if you can begin your claim for allergic reaction compensation, contact UK Law right away.

Alternatively, continue reading this guide to learn more about what you could do after an allergic reaction to Starbucks food or drink.

Services And Information

Everything You Need To Know About Your Rights After An Allergic Reaction At Starbucks

Under the Food Safety Act 1990 food businesses owe their customers a duty of care. This means that they must ensure that the food they provide isn’t harmful to their customers who consume it. What happens if a business acts negligently, by providing incorrect allergen information for example, and a customer becomes ill as a result? The business could be held liable for the customer’s injuries and may pay them compensation.

Starbucks is a multinational company with high standards of health and safety in operation. However, errors can take place.

People who suffer from food allergies are responsible for managing their condition. They should take time to check ingredients lists on food packaging and allergen information on menus to avoid allergens.

However, food and drink businesses can help customers with allergies make informed decisions. Cafes should provide the correct allergy information to customers. Furthermore, businesses must ensure that their products do not contain ingredients that should not be present. If they fail to do so and a customer suffers an allergic reaction, the company could be held liable for their injuries. Consequently, customers could claim allergic reaction compensation for their injuries.

How Can We Help You?

This guide will explain how to claim compensation if you have suffered an allergic reaction to food or drinks due to a cafe’s negligence. In addition, we will explain what laws protect the rights of consumers with food allergies.

Importantly, UK Law can help you if you have evidence of a valid claim. Our panel of skilled personal injury lawyers can handle your claim and will try to ensure you receive the correct amount of compensation. So contact UK Law to get started right away.

What Is An Allergic Reaction At Starbucks?

A food allergy is a medical condition that affects the immune system. People experience food allergies because their immune system mistakes otherwise harmless foods as a threat.

Consequently, to combat the perceived threat, the immune system releases chemicals. This causes unwanted symptoms. Furthermore, allergic reactions to food can range from mild to moderate to severe. An anaphylactic shock or anaphylaxis is a severe allergic reaction to food. An anaphylactic reaction can be fatal and should be treated as a medical emergency.

What Ingredients Could Cause An Allergic Reaction In A Cafe?

The most common food allergies include the following:

  • peanut allergies
  • tree nut allergies
  • fish allergies
  • milk allergies
  • allergies to some fruits and vegetables.

It is not yet fully known why some people develop food allergies. However, people with other allergic conditions such as hayfever or eczema may be more susceptible to developing food allergies. You can read more about the causes of food allergies in this NHS guide.

How Do I Know I am Having An Allergic Reaction?

A mild to a moderate allergic reaction can have the following effect on the body:

  • An upset stomach and vomiting.
  • The throat, mouth or ears feel itchy.
  • You may experience urticaria, also known as hives, which is a raised, itchy red rash.
  • A swelling of the face, known as angioedema. Angioedema can happen around the eyes, on the tongue, lips, and the roof of the mouth.

A severe allergic reaction is known as anaphylaxis. As we have stated, anaphylaxis is a life-threatening medical emergency. The NHS recommends you dial 999 immediately if you or someone else is suffering from anaphylactic shock. Please also administer the appropriate treatment if you can.

Symptoms of anaphylactic shock include the following:

  • An increased heartbeat.
  • Feelings of faintness or lightheadedness.
  • The skin becoming clammy to the touch.
  • Feelings of anxiousness or confusion.
  • Breathing difficulties such as wheezing or shallow breathing.
  • Fainting or collapsing.

Allergy Warning Information Rights

14 ingredients are the most common causes of food allergy cases in the UK. Food sellers are legally obliged to have easily accessible allergen information for customers. And, if a prepackaged product contains any of these 14 allergens, you should see that it’s clearly listed as part of the ingredients on the packaging.

So, for example, there could be a written warning on menus if an item contains any of these allergenic ingredients. In addition, if any common allergenic ingredients are used in prepacked food, the business should highlight these ingredients on the packaging. The text can be bold, italic or red, for example, so the words are easier for consumers to see.

What happens if a cafe fails to provide an adequate written warning about common allergenic ingredients contained in its products? This could be negligence on the part of the company.

For example, a cafe could be held liable for an allergic reaction to their hot chocolate if they provided inadequate allergy information that didn’t list the triggering allergen. As a result, the customer may be eligible to make an allergic reaction claim for their injuries.

This guide exploring what an allergic reaction at Starbucks could lead to aims to help you. If you need to talk, call us or use our live chat.

What Food Allergens Should Have Warning Labels?

14 allergenic ingredients are the most common causes of allergic reactions in the UK. These allergies are:

  1. nut allergy
  2. fish allergy
  3. egg allergy
  4. milk allergy
  5. soya allergy
  6. sesame seeds allergy
  7. molluscs allergy
  8. cereals containing gluten allergy
  9. peanut allergy
  10. lupin allergy
  11. celery allergy
  12. crustacean allergy
  13. sulphur dioxide allergy
  14. mustard allergy

Cafes should provide allergy warning information on their menu if an item contains these ingredients. If they don’t have the information on their menu, it should be accessible elsewhere. Similarly, prepacked items must have allergy warning labels.

Calculating Compensation For An Allergic Reaction

You might be eligible to claim allergic reaction compensation if you experienced an allergic reaction caused by a food supplier’s negligence.

How much compensation could your allergy claim be worth? You can use the compensation table below to estimate how much compensation you could claim in general damages. This is compensation to pay you for the pain, suffering and loss of amenity caused by your allergic reaction.

Special damages that you may also be entitled to are not included in the table. Special damages compensate you for financial losses.

Illness And Severity Description Compensation Estimate
Illness/Damage Resulting from Non-traumatic Injury: Severe This might include sickness and illness causing acute and serious pain. Claimants could suffer diarrhea and sickness. Serious illnesses will require hospital care. £36,060 to £49,270
Illness/Damage Resulting from Non-traumatic Injury: Serious Claimants could have similar symptoms to the above person. This illness should last a shorter amount of time and be less severe. £8,950 to £18,020
Illness/Damage Resulting from Non-traumatic Injury: Significant Discomfort Hospital admission for some days and a full recovery within two years. £3,710 to £8,950
Illness/Damage Resulting from Non-traumatic Injury: Varying Degrees Disabling pain that lasts for days or weeks. Up to £3,710

These compensation amounts are based on guidelines from the Judicial College. These guidelines may be used by legal professionals to value illnesses and injuries.

Depending on individual circumstances, the amount of compensation you receive may vary. For a personalised compensation quote, please call us to speak to an advisor.

What Are Special Damages?

Unfortunately, people who are injured often lose money as a result. For example, they may have to pay for prescriptions. Or the injured person may miss out on salary payments if they have to take time off work to recover.

Here are some examples of special damages you could claim:

  • Loss of income expenses
  • Care expenses
  • Travel expenses
  • Medical Expenses

You’ll need proof to be able to recover these costs. This can come in the form of receipts, bills or invoices, for example.

Do you have evidence of a valid claim after an allergic reaction at Starbucks? Read on to find out more.

What Laws Are In Place To Protect People From Allergens?

There are EU regulations that are practised in the United Kindom, which protect people with food allergies. We will look into this legislation in more detail below.

Article 14 of EC Regulation 178/2002 (General Food Law Regulation)

This article of the EC Regulation 178/2002 (General Food Law Regulation) states that food must be safe for human consumption. Therefore if food or drink contains allergenic ingredients, the business should provide this information.

Section 15 of the Food Safety Act 1990

This law states that it is an offence to misrepresent or incorrectly describe the contents or quality of food or drink for sale.

Section 14 of the Food Safety Act 1990

This section is more to do with the nature of the food that the customer wants. For example, if the customer’s asked for food without allergens, the business shouldn’t provide them with food that has the allergens in it. You can read more about the Food Safety Act 1990 here.

Is Starbucks legally required to remove allergenic ingredients from food if requested? No, but they should warn customers if they cannot remove an ingredient. Similarly, a company should not agree to remove an ingredient, then neglect to do so.

What Is A Catering Establishment Under The Law?

Many food safety laws refer to “catering establishments” and “prepacked foods”. What do these terms mean?

  • A catering establishment can be any business that serves food to paying customers. They can include cafes, restaurants, takeaway shops and workplace canteens. They may offer eat-in, takeaway and food delivery options.
  • Prepacked food is any food that is prepared and packaged before the point of sale. For example, large coffee shop chains such as Starbucks will often sell prepacked or pre-prepared food. They can also cook the food in-house.

Food Allergy Claim Time Limits

Is there a time limit in the UK for making an allergic reaction claim? Yes. If you suffer an allergic reaction due to a cafe’s negligence, you will normally have three years in which to claim compensation.

What happens if a child experiences an allergic reaction to Starbucks food or drink?

Unfortunately, a child cannot make a compensation claim for themselves. However, a parent or guardian can act as a litigation friend. This means that they can claim on behalf of the child and make important decisions for them.

When children reach their 18th birthday, they have 3 years in which they can make a claim for themselves, providing nobody’s claimed on their behalf already.

In the same vein, an individual can act as a litigation friend for a person who is not mentally capable of claiming for themselves. However, if the individual regains their mental capacity before someone has claimed on their behalf, they have three years to claim from their recovery beginning.

I Suffered An Allergic Reaction At Starbucks. What Should I Do?

After suffering an allergic reaction due to a cafe’s negligence, you could:

  • Firstly, visit a GP or hospital as appropriate. Not only is it important to get medical treatment, but you will also receive a formal diagnosis. Your medical records could later help prove that you suffered an allergic reaction.
  • Secondly, collect evidence to support your compensation claim. This can include saving the remains of the item of food that caused your allergic reaction. Or to prove that sufficient allergy warning information was not provided, take home a copy of the menu if it gave incorrect information.
  • Contact UK Law to see if you could begin your allergic reaction claim.

Claim For An Allergic Reaction At Starbucks On A No Win No Fee Basis

Many claimants who make an allergic reaction compensation claim choose to have their claim handled through a solicitor on a No Win No Fee basis. A No Win No Fee agreement is a contract between a claimant and their personal injury lawyer. It means that the solicitor’s fee payment will only be taken if the claim is successful.

Why do some people prefer to make a No Win No Fee claim?

  • The legal fee is only payable if the claim is successful, lowering the financial risk involved in funding a solicitor.
  • Furthermore, there is no upfront solicitor fee to pay, nor ongoing solicitor fees.
  • The majority of the compensation package goes to the claimant if they win their claim.

Contact UK Law today to see if you could make a No Win No Fee claim.

Contact Us Today To Start Your Claim

Have you suffered an allergic reaction caused by negligence on the part of a food seller? If you have evidence of a justifiable claim, get in touch. Contact us today using the details below.

  • Call our compensation claims helpline on 020 3870 4868.
  • Or please complete the claim online form.
  • Alternatively, you can chat with us directly using our Live Support widget.

Other Information

We hope you have found this guide helpful. You may wish to consult these guides to learn more about making personal injury claims.

Accident at Work Claim Guide

Slip And Fall Accident Claims Guide

A Guide To Holiday Accident Claims

External Information

Help from Allergy UK for people with allergies.

Allergy training for food businesses.

Allergy Guidance for Schools

FAQs About Your Rights After An Allergic Reaction At Starbucks

Let’s answer some frequently asked questions about claiming compensation after an allergic reaction.

Can you sue a company for an allergic reaction?

You could sue a company for an allergic reaction if they caused your accident by acting negligently. For example, you could claim compensation if the prepackaged product did not include allergens on its ingredients list.

Do allergic reactions count as accidents?

An allergic reaction can be considered an accident but could also be caused by negligence. For example, if a restaurant neglects to remove an ingredient after saying they will, this could be negligence.

How long does it take for an allergic reaction to settle?

The effects of an allergic reaction may go away on their own. Or an allergic reaction may need medical treatment for the symptoms to go away.

Thank you for reading our guide on what you could do after an allergic reaction at Starbucks.

Writer AL

Checked by HT