Make a Nut Allergy Claim for Compensation

By Stephen Moreau. Last Updated 28th April 2023. Suffering from a nut allergy can be worrying. Trying to help people understand the severity of it can be difficult. Nut allergies are common, but that doesn’t make it any less scary for the sufferer. Taking all the precautions to ensure you don’t consume nuts can be like a full-time job, so it’s important for food manufacturers, chefs, and waiters, amongst others, to do their part too. If they don’t do this and you experience an allergic reaction, you could make a nut allergy claim.

nut allergy claim

How to make a nut allergy claim

Not only is it morally correct for a restaurant to make it clear if food has nuts in it, but it’s also the law.

Consuming nuts when you have a severe nut allergy can result in anaphylaxis, which can be life-threatening, and is why it’s so important for restaurants to be aware of the ingredients in their food.

Before reading this guide, you may have questions such as:

  • Can you develop a nut allergy?
  • What causes nut allergies?
  • What is a nut allergy?

This guide will answer these questions to ensure you have as much information as possible about nut allergy symptoms and how to make a nut allergy claim. If you’d like to speak to a professional about food allergy compensation, you can contact our expert team of advisers today for free legal advice.

Get In Touch With Our Team

Our team of advisers work round the clock to ensure you feel confident in making a nut allergy claim. They’re available 24/7 to offer you free legal advice. One of our advisers will happily speak with you about your situation and assess how much compensation you could receive if you pursue a valid nut allergy claim.

Once you’ve spoken to one of our advisers, you’re under no obligation to continue with our services. However, if you’d like, an adviser can connect you with our experienced panel of personal injury lawyers who can begin your personal injury claim. They can discuss No Win No Fee agreements with you and help you get your life back on track after your nut allergy reaction.

If you’d like to begin your nut allergy claim process, we recommend you:

  • Call our team of advisers on 020 3870 4868 to chat with an adviser.
  • Fill out our online personal injury claim form. An adviser will get back to you at your earliest convenience.
  • Chat with an adviser through our live chat pop-up box for an immediate response. 

Services And Information

  1. What Is A Nut Allergy?
  2. Nut Allergy Symptoms And Diagnosis
  3. How Dangerous Are Nut Allergies?
  4. How Much Is Nut Allergy Compensation Worth?
  5. What Does The Law Say About Nut Allergies?
  6. Who Is Liable For My Allergic Reaction?
  7. Time Limits To Make A Nut Allergy Claim
  8. I Suffered An Allergic Reaction To Nuts, What Should I Do?
  9. Make A Nut Allergy Claim On A No Win No Fee Basis
  10. Other Information

What Is A Nut Allergy?

An allergic reaction can occur when the body’s immune system reacts badly to a certain food (in this case, nuts). Someone with a nut allergy can be allergic to just one type of nut, or multiple. Some examples are peanuts, cashews, and almonds.

You may be wondering ‘Are pine nuts a tree nut?’ Researchers have concluded that many people with a pine nut allergy don’t have a tree nut allergy. Nut allergies are common but life-threatening, so it’s of extreme importance that sufferers are careful with what they eat, and restaurants are completely transparent about what food contains nuts.

Statistics concerning the number of food allergies that occur each year aren’t readily available to the public. However, we have found statistics regarding which food manufacturers the public trust most. The table below includes statistics taken from Food.GOV.UK.

Nut allergy claim

Nut Allergy Symptoms And Diagnosis

According to AllergyUK, the common symptoms of a nut allergy are:

  • Nausea, diarrhoea, sickness, and abdominal pain.
  • Sneezing and a runny nose.
  • Itchy red rash that’s raised.
  • Itchy tongue, mouth, and throat.
  • Swollen lips, the surrounding area of eyes or face.

Anaphylaxis is a severe allergic reaction that needs to be immediately treated. An ambulance should be called and, if possible, adrenaline should be given to the individual as soon as possible. The common signs of anaphylaxis are:

  • Swollen throat and/or tongue.
  • Drop of blood pressure causing dizziness and sometimes fainting.
  • Hoarse, croaky voice.
  • Coughing and/or wheezing.
  • Struggling to speak and swallow.
  • Loud breathing.

In terms of diagnosis, if you suspect you may be suffering from nut allergy symptoms, you should immediately call an ambulance and attend A&E to receive the correct medical treatment. If you’re not currently suffering from a nut allergy reaction but suspect you may have this find of disposition, you should attend your local GP to seek medical advice. 

The medical professional is likely to perform an allergy test that will confirm if you have a nut allergy or if something else is causing your symptoms. You may be referred to a specialist allergy clinic to receive a skin prick test and/or a specific blood test to see if it’s definitely nuts that you’re allergic to.

How Dangerous Are Nut Allergies?

A severe nut allergy, such as anaphylaxis, is dangerous as it can be life-threatening. Anaphylaxis is a sudden condition that occurs when someone who has a nut allergy eats food with nuts in it. This particular allergic reaction is so dangerous that it requires immediate medical attention. Many people with anaphylaxis struggle to breathe as their throat closes up.

Some people’s nut allergy reaction will be minor to moderate, often accompanied by symptoms such as a rash, swollen lips, and nausea (for example). These reactions sometimes need immediate medical attention, but not every time. These people will usually carry an epi-pen so they can give themselves/be given an adrenaline injection to counteract the nut allergy reaction.

How Much Is Nut Allergy Compensation Worth? 

If you’re eligible to start a food allergy compensation claim after suffering an allergic reaction due to negligence, then you may have questions about what your payout may be if your case succeeds. Each claim is treated differently. There are several elements which can influence the final payout, such as how severe the claimant’s injuries are deemed to be.

To help provide some insight into potential nut allergy compensation amounts after suffering an allergic reaction, you can view the table of compensation brackets below. These brackets cover certain physical and psychological injuries someone may claim for after suffering symptoms of a nut allergic reaction. The brackets are based on the latest Judicial College Guidelines. Solicitors may check these guidelines when calculating the value of a personal injury claim.

Injury: Severity: Notes: Compensation:
Mental Anguish Severe A fear of impending death. £4,670
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder Severe PTSD stops the person from working or living at pre-trauma level. £59,860 to £100,670
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder Moderate Mostly recovered and effects left over aren’t significantly disabling. £8,180 to £23,150
Illness/Damage Resulting from Non-traumatic Injury, e.g. Food Poisoning (i) Severe Toxicosis Serious acute pain, vomiting, diarrhoea, requiring hospital admission for a few weeks £38,430 to £52,500
Illness/Damage Resulting from Non-traumatic Injury, e.g. Food Poisoning (ii) Serious but short-lived Diarrhea and vomiting ending after 2-4 weeks with remaining discomfort of bowel function, impact on sex life, and enjoyment of food for a few years. £9,540 to £19,200
Kidney Serious Permanent damage and loss of both kidneys. £169,400 to £210,400
Kidney Loss of one kidney One kidney is lost with no damage to the other. £30,770 to £44,880
Bowels Double Incontinence Complete loss of natural bowel function and urinary function and control. Up to £184,200
Bowels Loss of Natural Function Dependence on colostomy. Up to £150,110

A successful personal injury claim may see you awarded compensation made up of two elements—general damages and special damages.

General damages relate to your injury/illness and the mental and physical effect it has had on you. The awarded bracket depends on how severe your injuries/illnesses were and how long your treatment and recovery took.

Special damages reimburse you for the financial loss you suffered due to your injuries/illnesses. For example, you could suffer a loss of earnings due to having to take time off work because of your nut allergy symptoms. Please note that you may not be able to receive special damages if you don’t provide evidence, which could be payslips to prove your loss of earnings.

What Does The Law Say About Nut Allergies?

There are laws that require businesses and restaurants to have a full allergen list so that people with allergies can check what foods are safe for them to eat. 

Therefore, if a restaurant doesn’t include a list of ingredients for a certain food, for example with nuts in, nor does it provide any means for someone to get hold of that information, and someone has a nut allergy reaction, the restaurant could be liable for a claim being made against them. 

Not telling consumers what food has what ingredients could result in a severe allergic reaction, such as anaphylaxis which can be life-threatening.

Overall, there are 14 main ingredients that people are often allergic to. These ingredients must be included on food labels or in an easily accessible allergy list. These 14 allergens are:

  • Celery
  • Eggs
  • Fish
  • Molluscs (oysters and muscles)
  • Peanuts
  • Mustard
  • Sesame
  • Tree nuts (almonds, walnuts, hazelnuts, cashews, pecans, brazil nuts, pistachios, and macadamia nuts)
  • Crustaceans (crabs, prawns, and lobsters)
  • Milk
  • Sulphur dioxide and sulphites 
  • Cereals with gluten in them (for example, barley and oats) 
  • Lupin
  • Soybeans

If you’re allergic to any of these 14 ingredients, you must check food labels or ask staff for assistance to ensure you don’t eat food containing your allergen. If you notice a restaurant isn’t abiding by the food safety guidelines, you can use this online form to report a food problem.

Who Is Liable For My Allergic Reaction?

As stated in the above section, food providers, restaurants and supermarkets must take reasonable steps to ensure customers are aware of the ingredients in food items. This is mostly relevant to the 14 allergens stated above. 

There are a number of situations in which a third party could be deemed liable for your allergic reaction:

  • If food is cross-contaminated during preparation and carries with it no ‘may contain’ warning, then this could be deemed negligence in regards to food hygiene and safety.
  • If you go to an eatery and order a dish but ask that nuts are omitted, if the outlet agrees, they should provide you with a safe product as ordered. If, however, you suffer an allergic reaction after making this request, you could claim compensation. It should be noted that establishments can refuse any request made of them to vary dishes. 
  • If you ask for allergy advice and what you’re given is incorrect, you could make a claim if you go on to suffer a reaction.
  • If eating in a restaurant and the chefs use ingredients not listed on the menu, or if your request to amend a dish is ignored or isn’t relayed to the chefs, you could make a claim if your allergy is triggered.

However, customers are expected to protect their own health too, for example, by taking their epi-pen out with them in case they suffer an allergic reaction. 

Therefore, if you suffer an allergic reaction in a restaurant and didn’t bring your medicine, this may be seen as contributory negligence. This doesn’t mean you can’t still make a nut allergy claim. However, you may be seen as partially at fault and your compensation could be reduced to reflect your own personal responsibility.

If you’re at all unsure who could be liable for your allergic reaction, please get in touch with our expert advisers.

Time Limits To Make A Nut Allergy Claim

Food organisations have a duty of care to their customers, and this includes providing them with details of the 14 allergens on their food labels/allergen list. If they breach that duty of care, it could lead to someone suffering an allergic reaction. 

The general personal injury claims time limit is three years. That’s three years from the exact date that your injuries are sustained or three years from when you realise your injuries were due to someone else’s negligence.

However, there are some exceptions to the three-year time limit such as:

  • Child accident claims: If you’re under 18, the three-year personal injury claims time limit begins on your 18th birthday. If you’d like to file your nut allergy claim sooner, someone you trust can act as a litigation friend to file the claim for you before your 18th birthday. 
  • Mentally incapacitated claims: If you lose mental capacity or if the injured person lacks the capacity to represent themselves, the three-year time limit begins from when your recovery commences. Otherwise, a friend/family member can claim on your behalf sooner than this if it’s in your best interest.

If you’d like more information and advice about the personal injury claims time limit, our team of advisers can help. They can help calculate how much time you have left to have to make a nut allergy claim.

I Suffered An Allergic Reaction To Nuts, What Should I Do?

If you’ve suffered a nut allergy reaction, the first thing you should do is seek immediate medical attention. Either you or someone you’re with should call 999 and use your adrenaline-infused epi-pen (if you have it on you). If you’re unable to administer the medicine yourself, someone you’re with should inject you (if they know how to do it safely).

Seeking immediate medical attention for a nut allergy reaction is essential and could save your life. Furthermore, it may help increase your compensation amount in your nut allergy claim. Seeking medical attention means that you can show your medical notes to your solicitor to help prove your nut allergy symptoms’ severity and how long your treatment took.

Next, you should gather as much evidence as you can to prove that your nut allergy affected you financially. This evidence could be bus tickets to prove you travelled to and from medical appointments with your own money, or bank statements to prove you paid out of pocket for your prescription medication. Remember: you’ll struggle to receive special damages if you don’t provide evidence throughout your nut allergy claim.

Finally, it’s recommended that you look for a specialist solicitor to work on your case with you. Our panel of lawyers have the expertise and experience needed for personal injury claims, so they will know how to fill out the appropriate paperwork and help your nut allergy claim succeed.

If you’d like to work with our panel of personal injury solicitors, you can contact our team of advisers. They can have a chat with you.

Make A Nut Allergy Claim On A No Win No Fee Basis 

Our panel of personal injury lawyers can discuss making your nut allergy claim on a No Win No Fee basis. A No Win No Fee agreement is a contract between you and your personal injury solicitor. It states that you don’t need to pay any of your solicitors’ fees if your case loses. No Win No Fee agreements are popular among claimants as there’s little to lose and many financial benefits.

If your case fails, you won’t have to pay the fees your solicitor has accumulated throughout your nut allergy claim. If your case wins, your lawyer will deduct a small, legally capped percentage from your compensation to cover their costs. This percentage will be discussed with you before it’s deducted. 

If you do have a chat with our friendly team of advisers, you don’t have to continue with our services. However, if you have a valid claim and decide you want to make a nut allergy claim, an adviser can connect you with our panel of personal injury lawyers to begin your claim.

We recommend you get in touch with our team of advisers by:

  • Ringing them on 020 3870 4868. An adviser will always be available to have a chat with you.
  • Starting your personal injury claim online. An adviser will respond at whatever time is best for you.
  • Chat with an adviser online through our live chat pop-up box. An adviser can deliver free legal advice about your nut allergy claim. 

Other Information

A Guide To Car Accident Claims – Car Crash Compensation In The UK What To Do? – How To Claim?: Have you sustained injuries in a car accident that wasn’t your fault? Our guide explores how you can make a personal injury claim.

What Happens If You Don’t Report An Accident At Work?: If you’ve sustained injuries from an accident at work that wasn’t your fault, our article discusses if you can make a personal injury claim after not reporting the accident.

When And How To Report A Car Accident: Road Traffic Accident Compensation Claims: Our guide tells you when and how you can report a car accident to gain compensation for injuries that weren’t your fault. 

Food Allergy: This NHS article includes information about the symptoms, causes, types, and treatment regarding food allergies.

Food Allergies in Babies and Young children: The NHS guide shows how to find out if your child has a food allergy and how to handle it.

Peanut Allergy: If you live with a peanut allergy you can read this NHS article to learn more about the symptoms, severity, and diagnostic criteria of a peanut allergy,

Thank you for reading our guide to making a nut allergy claim.