Taking the Lid Off the McDonald’s Coffee Case

Have you heard the story about the lady who spilled coffee on herself and won millions of dollars from McDonald’s? Have you looked up the details on the story, or do you just know the story as a TV show punch line? Screen Shot 2013-10-23 at 5.25.05 PM

Stella became a symbol for frivolous lawsuits and fodder for talk show hosts, late night comedians, sitcom writers, and even political pundits. The headlines, referring to an elderly grandmother spilling coffee from McDonald’s and winning millions of dollars, practically wrote themselves. But cleverness came at the expense of context, and despite some more detailed reports that offered greater context and a new perspective, such as the documentary Hot Coffee, most people still don’t know the extent of Liebeck’s injuries. –Retro Report.