Liebeck v. McDonalds The Hot Coffee Controversy.docx - Running Head LIEBECK V MCDONALD’S THE HOT COFFEE CONROVERSY Liebeck v McDonald’s The Hot

Liebeck v. McDonalds The Hot Coffee Controversy.docx -...

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Running Head: LIEBECK V. MCDONALD’S: THE HOT COFFEE CONROVERSY 1 Liebeck v. McDonald’s: The Hot Coffee Controversy Business Law & Ethics 3305 University of the People
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LIEBECK V. MCDONALD’S: THE HOT COFFEE CONROVERSY 2 Abstract In this week’s written assignment I will explore a lawsuit that occurred in February of 1992. It is a notorious lawsuit in history due to spilling hot coffee and a big corporate having to pay a lump sum. The following questions are; what was the basis of her claim against McDonald's? Was the alleged tort intentional, negligent, or strict liability? Why did Ms. Liebeck's lawyers believe that McDonald's was liable to Ms. Liebeck? Do you think it is reasonable to expect that a hot drink purchased from a restaurant might quickly give you third-degree burns? How did the jury decide the case? Why do you think the jury decided the case this way? I will explain my findings and reason on how this lawsuit is twenty-seven years old and is still brewing . In addition, the beginning stage of how burnt skin is treated will be included. I sense that this is not just any hot coffee spilling and becoming rich. There is much more to this case and how it was misreported globally through news, newspaper, and television. On February 27, 1992, Stella Liebeck was in the passenger seat while her son pulling up in the drive-through McDonalds in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Once she received the coffee she placed it between her knees in order to lift the lid to put her sugar and cream. The hot coffee ended up spilling over and bring her groin, butt, and thighs. The 79-year-old woman eventually went into shocked as she was rushed to the hospital with the severity of the burns she received from the spilled cup of coffee. From this incident her medical bills and unable to work added up quickly to $20,000 but McDonald's only offered less than $1000. After that, she got herself a legal counsel asking McDonald's for $300,000. This did not happen and eventually went to trial. The jury ended up awarded Liebeck of a sum of, $160,000 in medical expenses and $2.7 million in punitive damages. Due to the large award, this lawsuit became an overnight sensation, created a debate on tort reform and accusing Stella Liebeck to become a millionaire over spilled coffee.
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LIEBECK V. MCDONALD’S: THE HOT COFFEE CONROVERSY 3 Many people did not agree with the award she received was fair.
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  • Spring '17
  • C Seaton

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