Most people think that a careless woman spilled some hot coffee on herself while driving, received minor burns, and then filed a lawsuit. When this case was made public, the entire nation almost instantly turned against the elderly lady and her … An alleged drunk driver careened down the street, lost control of his car, and crashed into a phone booth. That lawsuit brought change though - albeit not to United Airlines. McDonald’s Hot Coffee Lawsuit. You may be familiar with — and even outraged by — the famous lawsuit against McDonald’s by Stella Liebeck who was burned by hot coffee. The name of the documentary comes from the infamous and widely misunderstood “McDonald's Coffee Case,” which most people believe involved a greedy coffee drinker who spilled hot coffee on herself and won millions of dollars for essentially no reason. The poster-child of tort reformers is the famed “McDonald’s Coffee Case” - the case where a woman obtained a multimillion-dollar jury verdict for spilling hot coffee on herself. Regardless, this case still impacts the debate about reform of our civil justice system (i.e., tort reform). Liebeck became one of the urban legends of tort law after she was awarded US$2.9 million for burns she received from a spilt McDonald’s coffee over 20 years ago. The Liebeck case sparked a debate all across the country regarding frivolous lawsuits and excessive jury awards. The misconception is Stella Liebach was an elderly woman who spilled hot coffee on herself while driving. This case has been used as an example demonstrating a need for tort reform in the legal system. In 1992, Stella Liebeck spilled scalding McDonald's coffee in her lap and later sued the company, attracting a flood of negative attention. Thought I would give some brief facts about the case to show you how corporations ahve managed to get Americans to turn on themselves.1: … McDonald's Coffee and the Tort Reform Case I was just having a discussion with a conservative contact about if and why the American Middle Class is eroding. The McDonald’s hot coffee case was actively lauded by tort “reformers” as an example of all that was wrong with the American civil justice system. A Scalding Takedown on Tort Reform – How Stella Liebeck’s case against McDonald’s sparked a litigation revolution. McDonald’s and Pearson v. Custom Cleaners. Hot Coffee reveals what really happened to Stella Liebeck, the Albuquerque woman who spilled coffee on herself and sued McDonald’s, while exploring how and why the case garnered so much media attention, who funded the effort and to what end. She sued McDonalds for damages and the media played it out to be one big joke. In February of 1992, Stella Liebeck, a 79 year old woman from Albuquerque, New Mexico sued McDonald’s Corporation for suffering third-degree burns from their … Posted on 09-29-2014 by Doug Esten Tags: litigation, Trending News & Topics, trending news. Words: 3185 - … However, the documentary tackles the subject squarely in order to convince the people about the dangers of this reform. Liebeck v. McDonald’s, also known as the McDonald’s Coffee Case, is a 1994 product liability lawsuit. Once again, the great debate about tort reform is heating up throughout this Country. A few weeks ago, I was preparing jury voir dire questions for a short trial. McDonalds even promoted it to be a frivolous case with no real reason to sue. Aug. 18, 1994) (judgment awarding Liebeck $2.86 million in "hot coffee" case), vacated, 1994 WL 16777704 (Nov. 28, 1994): how tort cases are publicized to instigate tort reform. One of the most recognizable cases involving Tort Reform is the McDonalds Hot Coffee case. After seeing this film, you will decide who really profited from spilling hot coffee. Dist. The “Hot Coffee” case occurred at the perfect time for tort-reform supporters and corporate lobbyists, who were pushing federal legislation to limit consumers’ access to courts in cases of personal injury or other harm. One of the most successful campaigns in the history of misinformation about tort law was the infamous McDonalds hot coffee lawsuit. My acquaintance fell back on the argument of "Tort Reform". That’s not what happened. President Ronald Reagan described Bigbee’s case in a 1986 speech as follows: “In California, a man was using a public telephone booth to place a call. This lawsuit became one of the most famous in the US history because after the court’s awarded Stella Liebeck $2.9 million, after she was severely burned by the coffee she brought from McDonald, there were debates over tort reform in the US. NO VIOLATION: Students whose last names begin with the letters A through K will argue that McDonald’s did not violate its obligation of care to the consumer by serving coffee at 185 degrees, and tort reform is necessary to prevent these types of civil judgments. Here's what did happen: McDonald’s, which is better known as the “hot coffee lawsuit” and this case has been discussed in Exhibit I in the movie. On February 27, 1992, 79-year-old Stella Liebeck spilled a cup of McDonald's coffee and ignited a media firestorm. The case became national news when Liebeck was awarded a "$2.9 million settlement." Most people wondered how someone could be awarded so much money for spilling coffee on herself. The documentary drama, Hot Coffee, covers the highly misunderstood product liability case against McDonald's, as well as several other noteworthy cases demonstrating how Americans' access to the civil justice system has changed over recent years. Liebeck vs. McDonalds As a very controversial tort case, Liebeck vs. McDonalds was a closely followed by the news and legal community. This lawsuit became one of the most famous in the US history because after the court’s awarded Stella Liebeck $2.9 million, after she was severely burned by the coffee she brought from McDonald, there were debates over tort reform in the US. The jury’s $2.7 million award has long been a poster child for tort reform (the judge actually reduced her award to $480,000). In 1992, Stella Liebeck, 72, and her grandson went through a McDonald’s drive thru in Albuquerque, New Mexico and ordered a coffee. At the center of the debate is our country’s tort system. Thus, they found that the coffee was defectively manufactured. It became a huge spectacle and the … McDonalds coffee case and the hot coffee lawsuit, was a 1994 product liability lawsuit that became a flashpoint in the debate in the United States over tort reform. These students should clearly indicate their position on the … . A new documentary, Hot Coffee, to be released in 2011 explores how the case has been misrepresented to advance the anti-civil justice agenda of big business, including the health care lobby. For example, the case of Charles Bigbee was the “McDonald’s coffee case” of the 1980s. Liebeck pursued the case in court, and not to gouge the fast-food giant for cash, but to make a difference. This case came into news because of $2.7 million compensation was granted to the plaintiff. DemocracyNow.org -Stella Liebeck made national headlines in 1992 when she sued McDonald's after spilling a scalding cup of hot coffee on her lap. As the son-in-law of Stella Liebeck, the lady burned by McDonald's coffee, I read with great interest Liz Spayd's column on tort reform {Outlook, March 5}. She sued McDonald’s and was awarded $2.9 million, sparking a huge debate about America’s frivolous litigation trend and the urgent need for tort reform. Business Law Case Study 4/16/10 Liebeck V McDonald’s Corporation The case of Liebeck V McDonald’s Corporation also known as “The McDonald’s coffee case” is a well known court case which caused a lot of controversy. THE MCDONALD'S COFFEE SPILL CASE. The case … She suffered third-degree burns from the coffee and eventually sued McDonald's. Hot Coffee discusses several cases and relates each to tort reform in the United States: Liebeck v. McDonald's Rests., No. The McDonalds coffee cup case was no runaway verdict but, somehow, it was turned by the media into the poster child for greedy plaintiffs who refuse to take personal responsibility and frivolous litigation. Case Law Analysis: Tort Law 2 In 1992, the case Liebeck v. McDonald’s became a pivotal point in Tort Law, and lead to a rise in “frivolous lawsuits” across the country. Hot Coffee is an HBO documentary that examines our civil justice system, by profiling four so-called “frivolous lawsuits,” including the now infamous McDonald’s hot coffee case. Unit 8 Discussion Topic: McDonald’s Coffee Case Debate. McDonald’s, also known as the McDonald’s Coffee Case, is a 1994 product liability lawsuit. CV-93-02419, 1995 WL 360309 (N.M. 2d Jud. The corporate world has tried to deceive the people about the appropriateness of tort reform (Saladoff, 2011). Many saw this as a signal that tort reform was in dire need. Over the last decade or so, many states have enacted “tort reform” laws in response to concerns that frivolous lawsuits were out of control and hindering economic growth. Until now, those who wish to reform the tort system have played the role of the squeaky wheel. Proponents love to cite the most well-known supposed "frivolous lawsuit" is the story of Stella Liebeck - the woman who was burned by hot coffee from McDonalds. The End or just the Beginning. 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