What rights do I have as a customer if a fast food restaurant employee spits in my food?

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What rights do I have as a customer if a fast food restaurant employee spits in my food?

The manager at the restaurant acknowledged the incident and refunded my monies but said anything additional would be a civil suit.

Asked on January 6, 2016 under Personal Injury, Maryland

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

You could try to press charges against the employee for assault, but that's about all you could do:
1) Spitting in your food is a criminal act, and employers are not responsible, except in special circumstances that do not seem to apply, for the criminal acts of their employees, since criminal acts are beyond the scope of employment; therefore, the restaurant should not be liable.
2) Even if the restaurant were liable, or if you wanted to sue the employee him/herself, you also have to have damages (injuries, costs, losses, etc.): the law only provides compensation for actual harm (and not just emotional upset) you suffer, so if you were not harmed, you're not entitled to compensation.


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