Tuesday, December 11, 2018
Monster Beverage Corp., makers of Monster Energy drinks, has been hit with numerous products liability suits alleging its drinks cause heart attacks. Some of those cases have been settled, but many have been dismissed. In the first case to reach a verdict, a Texas jury deliberated for just 15 minutes before deciding that a Monster Energy drink did not lead to a heart attack for the then-18-year-old plaintiff. The company argues its product is safe and that a 16-ounce drink has less caffeine (160 mg) than a 16-ounce cup of Starbucks coffee (310 mg). The Bristol Herald Courier has details.
Tuesday, August 28, 2018
Tim Lytton has posted to SSRN Exposing Private Third-Party Food Safety Auditors to Civil Liability for Negligence: Harnessing Private Law Norms to Regulate Private Governance. The abstract provides:
In many industries, companies rely on private third-party audits to monitor their suppliers’ adherence to various standards. These audits are frequently paid for by the entity being audited, which creates a conflict of interest that incentivizes auditors to reduce the burden of audits by cutting corners and inflating audit scores. This article presents a case study of food safety audits in the fresh produce sector. It explains why large commercial buyers of fresh produce rely on private third-party audits paid for by growers despite the conflict of interest, and it argues that exposing auditors to civil liability for negligence would improve the rigor and reliability of these audits. The article concludes with a more general analysis of how the private law norms of duty and reasonable care imposed by civil liability can improve private governance.
Tuesday, June 7, 2016
The family of a 6-year-old girl who is allergic to peanuts is suing Panera Bread for negligence, based on an incident in which the restaurant added peanut butter to a grilled cheese sandwich despite a warning the girl had a peanut allergy. The restaurant blamed the incident on a language issue. The family heard of a similar incident in a Panera Bread not far from them. The Boston Globe has the story.
Friday, June 27, 2014
On Tuesday, the Supreme Court of Missouri issued an opinion in Coomer, the case of the fan injured by a flying hot dog. The court ruled that getting hit with a hot dog is not an inherent risk of baseball and the trial judge should not have allowed an assumption of risk instruction. The opinion is here. Alberto Bernabe, who has followed the case, has comments here. Michael McCann wrote a guest post for TortsProf in 2010 that foreshadowed the holding.
Saturday, November 30, 2013
Here's a good story for the holidays. John Hochfelder shares news of his former client, recovering from injuries suffered from electrocution. Chef Eduardo Garcia is in this week's People Magazine and will be on Good Morning America soon.
Friday, March 8, 2013
Friday, January 20, 2012
Thursday, December 1, 2011
Wednesday, July 27, 2011
A Texas man has filed products case against the manufacturer of Four Loko, alleging that the combination energy drink/alcoholic beverage caused him to suffer a stroke. He seeks $75,000 in compensatory damages, as well as punies. AboutLawsuits.com has the story.
Wednesday, May 25, 2011
Late last week, the Supreme Court of Illinois denied liability in a social host case for underage drinking. Plaintiff's decedent, age 18, attended a party at defendants' house. He was a friend of the defendants' son, who was hosting the party. Plaintiff's decedent allegedly consumed alcohol at the party. Shortly after leaving the house, he died in an automobile accident. The interesting doctrinal angle is the allegation that the defendants made a voluntary undertaking to supervise the party and prohibit drinking. The Restatement (Second) on voluntary undertaking is discussed in detail. The case is available here.
Thanks to Mark Weber (DePaul) for the tip.
Thursday, February 10, 2011
In March 2010, a California family visited Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida, with their four-year-old son Isaiah. While there, they bought some nachos as a snack. Those nachos "were spilled" on Isaiah, who suffered burns.
They've now sued Disney in a suit that might -- sort of -- echo the famous/infamous Liebeck coffee case, though there are some obvious differences (age of the plaintiff, the particular way the injury occurred, etc.).
According to at least one vendor's website, nacho cheese is held from 140-155 degrees.
Thursday, January 27, 2011
Thursday, December 16, 2010
Wednesday, January 27, 2010
A man going through a McDonald's drive-thru in Virginia was allegedly burned by the grease from a chicken sandwich. When he took a bite, “the grease from the inside of the chicken sandwich spread out all over my bottom lip, my top lip, down onto my chin.” When he complained to a McDonald's employee, another employee allegedly stated, “This is what happens to the sandwiches when they aren’t drained completely.” The Fourth Circuit vacated judgment for the defendants and remanded the case for trial. The opinion in Sutton v. Roth, L.L.C. is here. The story is from VLW Blog.
Saturday, January 16, 2010
In a course change, the FDA announced that it would be attempting to change BPA's status from "food additive" to "food conduct substance" and that it would be engaging in an extensive safety review of the product, which is in myriad food containers and other plastic packaging.