Florida girl awarded $800,000 for McDonald’s chicken McNugget burn

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A Florida jury has awarded an eight-year-old girl $800,000 (£622,000) in damages after she received severe burns when a McDonald’s Chicken McNugget fell on her leg.

The “dangerously hot” McNugget burnt Olivia Caraballo in 2019, then 4, as she opened her Happy Meal in the car at a McDonald’s drive-thru.

Her family had sought $15m in damages.

A jury in May found McDonald’s and its franchise owner were liable for the child’s injury.

A different Broward County jury deliberated for less than two hours on Wednesday before reaching the verdict about damages, according to local news outlet South Florida SunSentinel.

Ms Caraballo was awarded the $800,000 in damages from McDonald’s and franchise owner Upchurch Foods for pain and suffering and mental anguish, including $400,000 for the past four years as well as $400,000 for the future.

In a statement, the family’s legal team called the decision “momentous”.

“I’m actually just happy that they listened to Olivia’s voice and the jury was able to decide a fair judgment,” the girl’s mother, Philana Holmes, told US media outside the courtroom. “I’m happy with that. I honestly had no expectations, so this is more than fair for me.”

The BBC has reached out to McDonald’s for comment.

Ms Holmes told the jury that her daughter has a scar from the burn and is anxious to have it removed, according to the South Florida SunSentinel.

In the court, lawyers for the family shared photos of the burns as well as audio of the girl’s screams after getting injured.

McDonalds had argued the family should receive $156,000 because, they claimed, her pain ended after the burn healed in three weeks.

“She’s still going to McDonalds, she still asks to go to McDonald’s, she’s still driving through the drive-thru with her mom, getting chicken nuggets,” defence attorney Jennifer Miller said in court, according to the BBC’s US partner CBS News.

Related Topics

  • Florida
  • United States
  • McDonald’s

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