The Chicago Personal Injury Law Blog

Vicki LaRocco Sues McDonald's, Claims Hot Chocolate Too Hot

As its name implies, hot chocolate is meant to be served, well, hot. But a west suburban mother has sued fast food giant McDonald's, claiming the drink was way too hot for anyone to safely drink, according to CBS Chicago.

The plaintiff, Vicki LaRocco, claims daughter Mykael Vasquez suffered serious burns and permanent scarring on her leg after spilling the piping hot beverage. The suit also claims the lid was not properly secured and that they failed to warn customers that it was hot enough to scald if spilled.

With the help of her Chicago injury lawyer, who was not named nor cited in the article, the mother filed suit against McDonald's for $100,000 plus reimbursement for her child's medical bills. The three-count suit claims damages for negligence and product liability. 

McDonald's spokeswoman Danya Proud declined to comment on the suit in detail when questioned by Chicago Tribune reporters, only saying, "At this time, these are just allegations."

This is hardly the first time a fast food customer has sued after spilling a hot drink. Just last month, a mother filed suit in Brooklyn Supreme Court against Starbucks for scalding her 5-month-old baby, as covered by The Consumerist.

She claims she went to take a sip of her hot tea but it was so hot that she dropped the cup, some of it spilling onto her child. Her attorney said the tea should have been served on a tray and with an insulating sleeve.

And who can forget the gold standard of all hot drink lawsuits? Of course I'm talking about the 1992 incident in which 79-year-old Stella Liebeck was seriously burned when she sipped a McDonald's coffee, as recounted at The 'Lectric Law Library. She suffered third-degree burns on 6 percent of her body.

She eventually won a nearly $3 million verdict, which was later reduced to just over $600,000.

You should never file a frivolous lawsuit; but you may want to call an Illinois injury lawyer if you suffer serious injuries from a too-hot drink.    

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