Liebeck v. McDonald's Restaurants
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Liebeck v. McDonald's Restaurants, also known as the "McDonald's coffee case," is a 1994 product liability lawsuit that became a flashpoint in the debate in the U.S. over tort reform after a jury awarded $2.86 million to a 79-year-old woman named Stella Liebeck who burned herself with hot coffee she purchased from the fast food restaurant McDonald's. The trial judge reduced the total award to $640,000, and the parties settled for a private amount before an appeal was decided. The case entered popular understanding as an example of frivolous litigation.