Hot Coffee: The Truth About the MacDonald’s Coffee Case

by John McKiggan

When people I meet for the first time find out I am a personal injury lawyer almost invariably the conversation ends up with them mentioning the lady who spilled hot coffee on herself and sued McDonald’s for $3 million.

Unfortunately there is a stunning lack of public understanding about the real facts of the McDonald’s coffee case. That misunderstanding is fueled by corporate interests who want the public to belive that there is a “problem” with people being able to recover compensation for their injuires.

The insurance industry wants to increase it’s profits by limiting access to justice and the rights of innocent victims to receive full and fair compensation for their injuries.

Tonight HBO Canada is airing the documentary HOT COFFEE which examines the dangers of so-called “tort reform” and its threat to our justice system.

The documentary uses the now-infamous legal battle over a spilled cup of McDonald’s coffee as a springboard, the film follows four people, including McDonald’s plaintiff Stella Liebeck, whose lives have been affected by their inability to access the courts, and examines the role of corporations and the media in promoting “tort reform.”

The movie is airing here in the Maritimes on HBO Canada at 9pm. It’s well worth watching.

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