You might think there are plenty of reasons to sue the biggest fast food chain in the world – after all, they’ve got the bucks, right? – but you might not realize how far some people have reached (or not) when taking the corporation to court.
Below are 5 lawsuits that are all pretty bizarre – and that all involve McDonald’s.
5. McDonald’s vs. Ronald McDonald
After only being in business for 14 years, the independently-owned McDonald’s Family Restaurant was issued a legal notice from the McDonald’s corporation telling them to avoid using arches or offering drive-in service.
For years, owner Ronald McDonald (yes, really) ignored the notices, because he was using his family’s name on the building, but in 1992 when McDonald’s (the corp) opened a franchise in Fairbury, Illinois, things nearly went to court.
McDonald settled, agreeing to take the possessive S off the sign.
4. I’m not sure that’s McDonald’s fault.
In 2012, former McDonald’s employee Shelley Lynn sued McDonald’s for pushing her into a side job in a Nevada brothel.
She was hired in an Arroyo Grande, California location where she alleged the manager pushed her into a life of sex work.
She complained that there was no formal grievance process, and that the manager should never have been sold a franchise, but she lost in court.
3. A Quarter Pounder Without Cheese, Please
Some McDonald’s apparently offer the option of a Quarter Pounder without cheese for $.30 cheaper, and when customers Cynthia Kissner and Leonard Werner didn’t get their discount, they filed a $5 million class action suit.
Since not all locations offer the cheaper options, the judge ruled against them and their claim for damages.
2. That’s quite a pickle.
In 1999, Veronica Martin and her husband ordered hamburgers from a franchise in Knoxville, Tennessee and the pickle on hers shot out and scalded her chin.
She filed a lawsuit due to her second-degree burns, asking for $110,000. The parties settled for an undisclosed amount.
1. They’re not responsible for their Coke.
Trevor Walker ordered a Diet Coke from a Riverton, Utah store back in 2016 and got way more than he asked for – the drink was contaminated with Suboxone, a heroin substitute. He had to be taken to an emergency room after he lost feeling in his arms and legs, and subsequently sued McDonald’s.
McDonald’s argued in court documents that they shouldn’t be sued in addition to the store’s manager and employee, who are suspected of spiking the drink, as their corporate office is removed from day-to-day locations.
The case is ongoing, though the district court judge seemed to be on Walker’s side.
I’ve never sued anyone myself, and I know that we’re a litigious society, but man – bizarre is the best way to describe these for sure.
Have you ever sued a corporation? Was it McDonald’s?
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