TortsProf Blog

Editor: Christopher J. Robinette
Southwestern Law School

Monday, May 15, 2023

McDonald's and Franchisee Liable for Chicken McNugget Burn

McDonald's and a Florida franchisee are liable for a chicken mcnugget burning the thigh of a four-year-old girl in a 2019 incident.  A mother testified she bought chicken mcnuggets and passed them to her children in the back seat.  Shortly thereafter, she heard the screams of her then-four-year-old daughter, who had second-degree burns on her leg.  The argument, reminiscent of the Liebeck case, was that the food was too hot.  There was a factual dispute about the temperature of the mcnugget.  Plaintiffs' lawyers claimed the mcnugget was over 200 degrees; defense lawyers claimed it was no more than 160 degrees.  A jury found the franchisee liable for negligence and failure to warn customers about the risk of hot food.  As to McDonald's USA, the jury found it liable for failure to provide instructions for the safe handling of food, but not liable for negligence or defective products.  A separate jury will assess damages.  Thanks to Cinthia Chou Chan for the tip.  The story is here.

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