Woman Sues Dunkin’ Donuts After Suffering Burns from Hot Beverage

A woman in New Jersey is suing Dunkin’ Donuts for burns she sustained after ordering a hot apple cider from the coffee retailer, and subsequently spilling it on herself.

The product liability suit was filed February 11 by Jennifer Fragoso. Fragoso alleges that Dunkin’ Donuts was negligent and breached it warranty to its customers by serving her a beverage that was excessively hot. According to the complaint, she had visited a Dunkin’ location in September of 2012 where she ordered a hot apple cider. Fragoso accused workers at the Belleville, N.J. location of improperly securing the lid, causing it to become dislodged and for the hot contents to spill into her lap. Fragoso suffered painful second-degree and third-degree burns and is now permanently scarred with full-thickness scars that will never heal, according to her lawyer.

Though the Canton, MA-based retailer has not formally commented on the matter, a spokeswoman for the Dunkin’ brand did say that all of Dunkin’ Donuts’ hot beverage cups come with a displayed warning reading: “CAUTION: THIS BEVERAGE IS EXTREMELY HOT.” Fragoso’s attorney said that while this warning label may provide the company the opportunity to argue that the purchaser mishandled the product, the fact remains that a person cannot sustain third-degree burns unless the beverage was excessively high.

Products liability lawsuits like Fragoso’s have become much more common since one of the first lawsuits of its type involving an elderly woman and a McDonald’s coffee came to fruition more than 20 years ago. The woman, like Fragoso, had ordered a hot beverage and been seriously burned after it spilled onto her lap. She sued McDonald’s to cover her related medical expenses however she was awarded $3 million in punitive damages when the case was brought to trial. Though the case became complex, the facts remained clear that McDonald’s did not willingly accept responsibility for their share in the incident, and according to jurors, did not seem to take the victim’s injuries seriously.

If you or a loved one was injured as the result of a defective consumer product, do not hesitate to enlist the assistance of a seasoned Products Liability Attorney to discuss your options. Products manufacturers, food chains, food suppliers, pharmaceutical companies, and every other type of consumer products company has the responsibility to ensure that their products are safe for consumption and use. Failing to ensure their products’ safety means that if a consumer is injured as the result of the product the company pay be liable for paying compensation to cover losses caused by the injury.

At the law offices of Altman & Altman, our team of seasoned Products Liability Attorneys have nearly 50 years of experience handling all types of personal injury cases, and we have successfully recovered financial compensation from some of the largest manufacturers and retailers in the world. We have the resources, knowledge, and relationships with the nation’s top products liability and accident experts to successfully prove your case, and we promise to pursue all avenues of recovery so that you or your loved one can get the care that you need. If negotiation doesn’t lead to a satisfactory settlement, our personal injury attorneys will file a Massachusetts products liability lawsuit and fight for your compensation in court. Call our office an initial consultation with one of our attorneys. All initial consultations and case evaluations are completely free of charge and of no obligation to you. Our attorneys are available around the clock to answer any and all questions you have regarding your case.

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