Experienced Attorney Fights for Victims of Hot Coffee Burns

Do you have a case for an injury claim following a spill in Pennsylvania or New Jersey?

For some people, there’s nothing like a piping hot cup of coffee, especially on a brisk day. Unfortunately, when the coffee you’re served is too hot, and it burns your mouth or a server spills it on you, you can sustain severe burns and even permanent scarring. The Pagano Law Firm, LLC works to enforce the rights of victims to be compensated for coffee burn injuries caused by negligent defendants. Located in Radnor, our firm helps clients throughout southeastern Pennsylvania and adjacent areas of New Jersey.

Determining liability in hot coffee burn cases

Of course, most coffee is supposed to be hot to the touch, but serious problems can occur when it is unreasonably, dangerously hot. In a famous case, a victim at McDonald’s suffered third-degree burns to her thighs and pelvic region, requiring hospitalization. Moreover, the fast-food chain had known about the danger to consumers for more than 10 years and had done nothing to correct the issues in their restaurants, even after more than 700 injuries to adults and children burned by hot liquid. As in other personal injury cases, a coffee-burn plaintiff must prove four essential elements:

  • Duty — The defendant owed the victim a duty of reasonable care. In this case, a restaurant has a duty not to serve dangerously hot beverages.
  • Breach — The defendant breached the duty by acting carelessly.
  • Causation — The breach directly caused the victim’s injury.
  • Damages — The victim suffered a personal injury, resulting in economic losses, as well as noneconomic harm, such as pain and suffering.

The breach of duty can be deliberate or reckless, but most often, it is the result of negligence. Most coffee-burn cases arise when the beverage is served at too high a temperature, when the cup cannot adequately hold scalding-hot liquid or when a server spills coffee on a customer. Restaurants are liable for the negligence of their employees while they are working.

Compensation in hot coffee burn lawsuits

Victims of coffee burns are entitled to personal injury damages, including medical expenses, lost wages, and compensation for pain and suffering. Even after the immediate health danger subsides, scarring can cause permanent harm and humiliation, which is compensable in a personal injury lawsuit. In the McDonald’s case, the court added punitive damages, because of the company’s notice of the danger and callous disregard for recurring burn injuries.

Contact a skillful Pennsylvania burn injury lawyer for a free consultation 

The Pagano Law Firm, LLC in Radnor represents clients in Pennsylvania and New Jersey who have sustained burn injuries from hot liquids such as tea or coffee. Please call 484-318-2561 or contact us online to make an appointment.