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Comments

Its your fault if you spill you coffee on yourself maybe people should just be more cafefull about what they choose to drink and when they choose to drink it i know i like the coffee better when it was hotter

iAN

i LOVE MCDONALDS
PLESLEW SEND ME FREE FOOD IF U DONT THAT WOULD BE UNCOOL

sarah fox

i think its the womans fault personally and the comment above is pretty sad sarah x

sarah fox

i think its the womans fault personally and the comment above is pretty sad sarah x

danielle asquith

its her own fault

Colin- devil's advocate

If McDonalds 'deserved' to be sued for serving coffee too hot then does this mean everywhere on the planet that serves hot coffee/other hot drinks/hot food should be subject to rigorous beverage temperature laws? If the cafe down the road owned by an old couple serves me coffee and then i spill it on myself and it burns me should i sue the pants off them? If my mum gives me an 190 degree apple pie which i spill on myself should i sue my own mother out of house and home? Big corporations do nasty things and they dont give a **** about the individual consumer. This is fact and it aint changing anytime soon. why would they? But if i choke on a Big Mac should i sue too? Is it really THEIR fault? If i drive my car into a ditch should i sue Ford? If i climb inside my own freezer and sit there until i get severe frostbite should i sue Zanussi? I know im oversimplifying and exaggerating, but i just want to make the point that McDonalds probably isn't the only place in the world that serves coffee that would burn you if you spill it on you. Would Stella have sued her local cafe if the same happened there? I don't think so, But McDonalds is 'ok' to sue, because it is a)faceless, b)'evil' and c)very rich.
surely its common sense to NOT spill coffee on yourself. No? Big corporations do need regulating and, often, punishment. But not just for being a big corporation.

TJ

While I agree that simply because a corporation has a lot of money they should not be targeted, what would the alternative have been for Mrs Liebeck? Pay the bills herself because it isn't fair to expect a company that makes a $1.3 million dollar profit from selling a product they KNOW is unsafe for human consumption to step up to the plate? It is time that multi-million dollar corporations started taking some responsibility for their actions! Colin (above) asked whether 'everywhere on the planet that serves hot coffee/other hot drinks/hot food should be subject to rigorous beverage temperature laws?' My answer? YES ABSOLUTELY! The public pay good money for the product they purchase (note the daily profit for MD coffee sales if in any doubt), and should not be sold something that can cause 3rd degree burns if spilt. While Mrs Liebeck may have spilt the coffee, surely this is a reasonably forseeable event when selling 190 degree coffee with ill-fitting lids at a drive-through? That being the case, they had a responsibility to ensure that if such an event occured, it would not typically cause the damage that it did. If all the advocates and litigants of the world had the attitude 'Big corporations do nasty things and they dont give a **** about the individual consumer. This is fact and it aint changing anytime soon. why would they?' actions such as serving 190 degree coffee unfit for human consumption, would continue, and the shareholders and CEO's of corporations such McDonalds would grow richer and richer off individual misfortunes. Thank God juries around the world are finally stepping up the to plate and making these corporations take some personal responsibility!!

Joe  Blow

Get a real life! Better yet sue your parents for not giving you a real life, then sue the gov't for not forcing your parents to give you a real life, then sue all lawyers for not already suing the Gov't and your parents for not giving you a real life, then sue you all at Corpreform.com for not rousing up enough people to sue the gov't and your parents for not giving you a real life and last but not least sue yourself for being too stupid to get yourself a real life!

SheaNC

Just wait until it happens to you, Joe Blow

Ted

McDonald's hasn't lowered the temperature of their coffee. And Starbucks serves their coffee at the same 190-degree temperature. Nor should they: the ANSI standards recommend that coffee be brewed at an even higher temperature. Stella Liebeck's lawyer was just in the paper suing Starbucks for the rare 1-in-dozens-of-million cases when someone is careless enough to spill coffee on themselves.

Most judges throw out these coffee lawsuits as meritless. See, for example, McMahon v. Bunn-O-Matic, which is discussed on overlawyered.com.

Bill Lawson

Unmentioned in all of this is the fact that the coffee was so hot that it compromised the integrity of the cup. The cup collapsed- popping off its top which was required to maintain its structural integrity. It became a gusher of hot coffee.

Its hard to believe how effective McDonalds and others have been in spending hundred of millions of dollars in media expenses to use this case to control the minds of Americans to support tort deform. Tort deform means taking away the security of real life people (who incorrectly still think that if they are honest and careful that they will be treated right) so that corporations can be shielded from their most outrageous and calculating conduct.

Tort reform terminates the struggle of innocent injured people for a return to normalcy in their lives and puts them on welfare (so the same whiners who support tort reform are still going to pay for the support of these innocent injured- but it will no longer effect business obscene profitability). Tort reform doesn't just effect frivolous lawsuits. Tort deform's purpose is to cause innocent people who are catastrophically injured by big business to lose everything (self-support, family, self-respect and everything else) so that business does not need to be responsible for the injuries it causes. Will this help big business much? Probably not. The insurers as always will never even lower premiums- they will continue to pocket all profit for themselves, and now it will include blood money- the monetary benefits of the security that has been taken away from the innocent catastrophically injured.

Ted

Bill, the reason no one mentions the "coffee comprising the integrity of the cup" is because the coffee didn't do anything to the cup. Liebeck spilled the coffee when she removed the lid. Her theory is that coffee should never be served at a temperature higher than 140 degrees. Not even ATLA claims that the coffee cup (identical to the billions of coffee cups sold without incident) had anything to do with the accident.

Kat Ab.

Relax, poeple! Just becasue one personw as lucky enough to win the coffee suit, not everybody will go running about sue-happy. Hot enough to cause 3rd degree burns in 2 seconds is a bit overboard, even for those of you who drink hot coffee.
Personally, I feel the woman was lucky not to get 3rd degree burn in her mouth, a leg must be bit easier to treat!
Not all hot coffee is sue worthy, but an excessively hot coffee is. A product that causes undue damages... and had caused undue damages is worth the money.
And yes, McDonalds deserved the suit. If tehy feel thy can ignore 700 other similiar cases, hence indicating a major issue, then well..

Mike

It's unfortunate that people have been burned from hot coffee. McDonalds had served that coffee to millions and millions of people that didn't get burned when drinking it. If one or even 700 people were burned from spilling it on their skin that is their fault. McDonalds never sold coffee for the purpose of spilling it on your genitals. There are countless products that can be harmfull if not used correctly.
Now if McDonald's coffee was so hot that it gave 2nd and 3rd degree burns to everyone who tried drinking it, then that is another issue...

Kayla

I think it's her own fault. I work at McDonalds and I spill coffee on myself all the time you just have to suck it up or be careful. It's coffee people...coffe is hot it's common sense. Duh

HuMMMMM

I recently was injured due to a loose floor board in McD's. McD's knew the board was broke and located in heavy customer area, but failed to repair the board. The manager documented her statement regarding their neglegence, while filking out my injury report.

I have a sprained knee and hospital bills. Would it be unjust to think they should pay my expenses? No,they were neglegent and caused my injury. Maybe if they had a sign up warning people about the damaged floor board I may have avoided injury.

From my point of view the coffee is no different. Where was the warning. They were well aware the temp could casue serious burns but chose to save money by using hotter weaker coffee products.THEN chose not to warn its customers of the damagers. Burns requiring skin grafts is serious business and very painful. This lady suffered.

Wait until McD's hurts you or a family member you will think twice.

Matt

Honestly, all of you who declare it is Stella's fault, you should be ashamed of what you are saying. Starbucks and coffee bean are the two coffe places here in california. The temperature at which both of those places serve their coffe e is in no excess of 110 degress celsius. This womans coffee was at 190 degrees celsius. That is 80% Hotter!!! This woman did not want to sue McDonalds. She simply wanted them to pay her medical bills. Perhaps you should read all of the article before you make comments like that. Pretend for a second that you are a man. And you spill water at the temperature of 190 degrees all of your penis and your testicles.Don't tell me that that would not hurt. Just put your self in her shoes before you start making judgements. "The coffee was not fit for consumption" said McDonalds. They said it their self. When it happens to you, with 190 degree coffee, you'll understand her pain!

Ted

Matt, no offense, but you don't know what you're talking about.

1. Starbucks serves its coffee hotter than McDonald's does. Which is why Starbucks is so popular, because coffee needs to be hot to be good.

2. "190 degrees Celsius" (or even 110 degrees Celsius) would be steam, not liquid; look it up.

Blake the Bush supporter

I heard there was a lady that sued McDonald's because the people there didn't tell her that her coffee was hot and she burned herself. I mean what a moron. Did she think the coffee would be cold? That's a stupid and poor excuse. What a con-artist. "Here's your cold coffee ma'am, enjoy". That's why they have to stupid proof everything nowdays on tags so people don't get hurt and sew.

steveo

I think she just had some kinky fetish that turned out bad

Juan-two-tree

I don't really care about the lady who has butter fingers and who is really clumsey. Obviosly you guys don't have a life to be sitting there reading about other peoples problems.

I don't really care about the lady who has butter fingers and who is really clumsey. Obviosly you guys don't have a life to be sitting there reading about other peoples problems.

WANDA

I think taht it is both McDonald's and the ladies because ya. It is both of there faults.

THE END

I think taht it is both McDonald's and the ladies because ya. It is both of there faults.

WANDA

I think taht it is both McDonald's and the ladies because ya. It is both of there faults.

Suzie Wuzie Puzie

I really love Mcdonalds french fries. I love the extra salt and grease that come with them. I also just so happen to live the love hadles and the flab that it gives me on my upper and lower but. MMMMM I LOVE McDONALDS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I really love Mcdonalds french fries. I love the extra salt and grease that come with them. I also just so happen to live the love hadles and the flab that it gives me on my upper and lower but. MMMMM I LOVE McDONALDS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

jOHN wAYNE

HI well I love the food they serve there because it is greasy and fatty. I just love it. This lady is stupid for suing them because I wouldn't they have good food. GET OVER YOURSELF! GOSH LADIE! NOW THEY ARE BROKE AND I CAN'T EAT FAT FOOD!

Guptha

We serve soups in our school at 70degrees celcius. That's hot, but not hot enough to burn you. We do that to avoid being sued.

Servers of food and beverages need to protect themselves and their customers. Some customers are idiots.

jeepers_jamie

I think you are all stupid. She is an old woman. If i had burns from coffee that hot i would probably sue too and you guys all need how to use spell checker because your typing is horrible!

Guest

"you guys all need how to use spell checker because your typing is horrible!"
I'm sorry but if you are going to criticize about how people write please use proper spelling and grammar yourself.
Also, ya coffee is supposed to be HOT and yes I realise that she may be old but if you are going to open coffee in a vehicle, well you are either going to spill it or get into an accident. Why would she open it anyway? To be fair though, she should get her medical bills paid off and she should also get a swift kick in the A$$ for being so stupid.

georgie rogers

i think that its macdonalds fault because if they know it will burn someone as bad as the woman got burnt then why serv it to her?
this is really silly of corse you want hot/warm coffee but 190degrees is stupid!!!
i use to like macdonalds but now i know it is a crappy place to go!

georgie rogers

its macdonalds fault because if they know it will burn anyone that much then why serv it them! its silly!
yea some people like hot/warm coffee but 190 degrees is stupid!

Kate

Here you go, think of the game hot potato, what is the first thing that happens when you have something burning hot in your hand?!! 190'is hot enough to cause 3rd degree burns. Maybe you need a visual of the suffering this woman underwent? Layers of skin peeled back from sensitive thigh and groin areas. Skin removed from other areas to be grafted. Picture it happening to you. Are you squirming yet? All this woman had wanted was her medical bills paid. What's the matter with you people! I guess the media has successfully desensitized each of you. I pity your aging parents. We need to be unified towards injustices.

chelsea

ur all tight 4 slagging er off u would say a different thing if it was u!!!!!

tight bastards!!!

Leonard

i think that the old woman should of checked the temperature 1st.

Omniscient

Okay, the damn coffee was hot--we've established this. By reiterating that over and over, you aren't communicating to me WHY McDonald's should have been sued.

As I see it: you get a cup of coffee and it's pretty damn hot. The lady's in the vehicle and puts it between her thighs. At this point, she should be able to take a stab at exactly HOW hot this coffee is. Inner thighs are among the most sensitive parts of the body. Sure, she has cotton pants on but something brewed at 190 degrees should be prominently hot--at least enough to understand that it's unsafe to touch or drink. Another thing--she was taking off the lid? WTF is the purpose of the lid, then? As far as I remember, the lid was there to PREVENT the coffee from spilling. It's not like she couldn't have drank it with the lid on--there's a punch-out section to outlet liquid. Maybe if she had more common sense, she could've avoided scalding herself and would not have pointed the finger at coincidentally one of the largest franchises in the industry. Alright, so she's takin' off the lid. At 70 years old, you shouldn't be so decadent as to have forgotten that hot things burn. As someone else said before me: "Nobody is going to serve cold coffee" unless the customer specifies. This is true. When you order "coffee", you're going to get it served up hot. Now I think some people here are over-sympathizing.

Though I do admit McDonalds infringed on some safety regulations. But you notice how 700 heads only popped up when one woman was bold enough to take her shit to court? I'm thinking gold-digger, not victim. How many times in past years have you seen wealthy corporations/individuals brought to court for incidents which were skeptic and/or inept? Exactly. I mark this in my book a self-inflicted injury that could easily have been avoided. Coffee served in other restaurants could easily burn--though not so proficiently--and leave someone in a bad state. It just seems like a trivial case to me when one woman decides to take a step with the wrong foot and spill something on herself.

sammy4231

If you are in the business of painting houses, once in awhile you are going to get paint on the wrong thing or break a window. It happens. So, you either get the paint off, fix the window, or carry insurance aganist accidents. It's part of the cost of doing business; and that cost gets spread out to all paint jobs with and without accidents.
If you are in the coffee business, and the coffee burns a customer (just as when it burns an employee), you should pay the hospital bill only. No negligence or punitive or lost wages awards should apply. Hot coffee burns are part of the cost of doing business once all accepted safety standards are met. The risk of pain from injury must fall on those who choose to take that risk, but the money problem must fall where the money is, or it can't be resolved.
If we can accept this tort reform as law, the business will take responsibility for safety standards (and even extra precautions that make fiscal sense) to make money; and the customer/employee will take that same responsibility to avoid pain and loss of future income. Once everyone knows their legal responsibilities, we can settle out of court. Everyone except the ambulance chasers will be a little richer

LetsThink

"Another thing--she was taking off the lid? WTF is the purpose of the lid, then? As far as I remember, the lid was there to PREVENT the coffee from spilling. It's not like she couldn't have drank it with the lid on--there's a punch-out section to outlet liquid. Maybe if she had more common sense, she could've avoided scalding herself and would not have pointed the finger at coincidentally one of the largest franchises in the industry."

Umm, she was probably adding cream and sugar, genius. Which McDonald's does not do for you. It is a highly predictable event that someone who buys coffee through a drive through, particularly the passenger, would open the lid to add cream and sugar while the car was in motion. Furthermore, it highly likely that a person would either hold the coffee over his or her lap, or even in what it is often the only place to hold the coffee still -- between his or her thighs.

You'd have to try pretty hard not to foresee this scenario.

Which isn't even the point. I'm sure each and everyone of us has spilled a drink into our lap while in a car. We can relate to that. But what if that drink was so abnormally hot that an ambulance had to be called, that you were admitted to the emergency room and had to go extensive, painful and disfurging surgeries over a period of time? What if it left you in the burn unit, with dressing and gauze applied to your genitals? Can you relate to that? And what if after this happened, one of those spills we deal with so often that just happened to have catastrophic results (as opposed to the typical, 'damn, I have a stain on my pants,' results, you discovered that the company which sold you that beverage knew that this beverage caused severe injuries in over 700 people, and yet decided to do nothing to reduce the danger? That these injuries were preventable? Can you relate? And what if all you wanted from the company, the company that knowingly declined to prevent this accident, was help paying the extensive medical bills which followed, and they refused?

Why would anyone assume that a jury of 12 people, each of whom heard the entire case from start to finish, is to stupid to reach the correct verdict? Every SINGLE one of those jury members? This is exactly why cases are judged by people who sit through the whole proceding and not by those who read scant soundbytes on the Drudge Report.

Many people think that these lawsuits are brought on by people who blame others for their own stupidity. It seems to me that supporting a policy which would severely hamper the protections each of us is afforded through the civil courts is about as stupid as it gets.

Who are you going to laugh at when you when you're walking down a flight of stairs and hit a spot on the steps which causes you to trip? Now, you walk down flights of stairs all the time, maybe even this flight, but this ONE particular spot caused you to trip. And that trip caused you to fall forward and hit your head on a concrete planter placed at the foot of the stairs to beautify the area. And lets say the result of hitting your head is some brain damage which now makes it impossible for you to work. Let's then say that you find out that, while most people do not, someone trips on that exact same spot on the stairs and hits his or her head on that planter every week. But the property owner decided that the aesthetics of the planter were more important than the safety of those people casually walking down the staircase.

I have a hard time believing that anyone in that situation wouldn't hold the property owner responsible and want at least some compensation for the expenses and loss of income.

That situation is analagous to the McDonald's lawsuit. And if you think it's stupid of a person to put his or her foot down on that particular spot of the staircase, then by all means, give up your right to protect yourself and others from the negligence and calculated risks taken by others. Laugh now, cry later.

mcdonaldsisn'tallbad

Not every Mcdonald's serves their coffee at the same temperature. The mcdonalds I go to waits 10 minutes before serving the coffee through drive-thru.

Oliver Chapman

It's funny you mention how hot McCoffee is;

I hate ice in my fanta when I go there, so I take it out, and my mum put it in her coffee to cool it down.

Even though I've stopped ordering ice, my mum actually asks for a cup of ice when ordering a coffee.

It's still too hot! In the UK at least...

well mcdonalds is nasty cause i found a roach leg in my sandwhich and 2 dead roaches in the bathroom but them grill chickens are good but hardees is the best remeber i love eggs!!!!!!!!!!!!

that lad who got burned above did it on purpose for money i know cause shes my best friend if that aint right call it a turkey's leg YES SIR

Kerby

Get a real life! Better yet sue your parents for not giving you a real life, then sue the gov't for not forcing your parents to give you a real life, then sue all lawyers for not already suing the Gov't and your parents for not giving you a real life, then sue you all at Corpreform.com for not rousing up enough people to sue the gov't and your parents for not giving you a real life and last but not least sue yourself for being too stupid to get yourself a real life!

Some of you are soooo naive

The point of taking the lid off is to allow the coffee to cool down you dimwits. And coffee only needs to be at 130 F - 140 F to be pretty hot temperatures. The water in your showers is about 120 at its absolute hottest.

Walter

NATHANIELIS FAT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

fATTY

NATHANIEL AND LUIS ARE FAT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
!
!
!!!!!!!!!!!!
!

Steve fisher

As a holder of the American Coffee Brewing Institute's, "Gold Cup Award," I was taught to serve coffee at 190 degrees.

"Unfit for Human Consumption," is absurd. Many foods are served too hot to eat immediately and are expected to be allowed to cool a bit before consumption.

If you like to pick on Corporate America, have at it. Just understand the issues.

Sorry for the poor lady, but.......

I serve my coffee as hot as possible. I even give it 30 seconds on the microwave at work. Then hike back to my office to sip it slowly while working. Works for me.

Steve

foxyg

okay. Here's something.

It was YEARS ago. Get OVER it, MOVE on. GO SEE something else.

Will Parker

Kudos to sammy4231. I could not have said it better myself. If a dangerous result is foreseeable (and in this case known) to a business owner, punitive damages are the only way to get their attention. Had McDonalds voluntarily paid this lady's medicals, no lawsuit would have been filed. Furthermore, for those of you unfamiliar with our legal system, many states direct punitive awards to charities, not the victim directly. Most other times, the judge reduces the amount of the award significantly. That information does not make a good headline, however, and is never known to the public.

Linda

My husband just burned himself this morning 7/31/2007 from spilled coffee on his leg from McDonald's. The lid wasn't put on properly, and the manager admitted they've had a problem with the lids not being pressed down all the way. He considers himself a loyal shareholder of 500 shares and was apologetic, which infuriates me, that he didn't want to cause any trouble for McDonalds because that might affect their stock price. He has a red mark on his leg from the burn, but won't go to the doctor. I wonder how many people have been burned from ill fitting lids? You would think they would have a device to put them on securely. My husband's biggest complaint is that they often leave out the cream and sugar. The manager offered to give him a free meal next time to make up for this accident. Kayla, under the law even if there is a warning sign in large print and someone even verbally tells you of a dangerous situation, they're still responsible for any injuries because of their negligence.

nancy randolph

I got burned by mcdonalds coffee about ten years before that elderly lady did. I took the top off to add ice. My fault, not mcdonalds. I had a sore thigh for about a week. I learned to be more carefull after that. I didn't even think about a law suit. I also got a coffee to go at another fast food place that was so hot on the outside I almost dropped it. I think you should sue if is something like a person being downright unresponsibe. It's not like the server didn' have the lid on tight. This actually did happen to me at Mcdonalds. They said sorry and put on a different lid. To make it short and sweet/ pay attention to whats going on.

Juan

i think this lady is ridiculous because like duhhh...if your going to order coffee its a sure that the stupid coffee is going to be HOT...dammm..america doesnt even know what to sue for now a days, god lady get to work you shouldnt be sueing any body for the stupid things you do...im sorry if im being rude but its the truth. you dont even know how many people that worked at the mcdonalds corporation worldwide got fired because of the sue...that is another thing USA DOESNT EVEN KNOW WHAT TO SUE FOR AND WHERE TO GET MONEY FROM... people get a life

Juan

i think this lady is ridiculous because like duhhh...if your going to order coffee its a sure that the stupid coffee is going to be HOT...dammm..america doesnt even know what to sue for now a days, god lady get to work you shouldnt be sueing any body for the stupid things you do...im sorry if im being rude but its the truth. you dont even know how many people that worked at the mcdonalds corporation worldwide got fired because of the sue...that is another thing USA DOESNT EVEN KNOW WHAT TO SUE FOR AND WHERE TO GET MONEY FROM... people get a life

coppo

steve fisher, you're a moron.

coffee should never be served above 180 degrees farenheit.

MAXIMUM.

Above this temerature aside from being COMPLETELY undrinkable, it will scald the milk and cause unpleasantness to the digestive tract.


and Juan.....did you even READ the facts of the case? apparently not, even though it's right at the top of the page. If the number of people fired didn't include the people at the top of the corporation, it wasn't enough.

joel

today i went to buy the mac donalds breakfast and i found a hair in my sandwich,.. what should i do ??????

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