The case was that of Plaintiff Devrim Cacim-Worthy, who sued Starbucks for negligence when she was severely burned by a cup of hot coffee. After reviewing details and evidence, the judge has denied Starbucks appeal for summary judgement (disposing of a case before trial), and has allowed for the case to proceed. The judge, District Judge Denis Hurley, cited that the evidence “reasonably supports her claim that defendants breached a duty of reasonable care because the Starbucks employee did not properly secure the lid before handing plaintiff’s coffee to her and that this breach caused the coffee to spill.” He further found that there was “reasonable probability that her injury was caused by Starbucks.”
Cacim-Worth was represented by Sacco & Fillas partner Tonino Sacco and senior associate Lamont Rogers. We had the chance to ask Tony Sacco his views on the case, and this is what he said,
“We are proud of the Federal Court’s decision where we are responsible for creating new common law which now protects more consumers from negligent acts arising from the coffee industry; but, more importantly, the Court’s analysis must be applauded for properly applying a core principle of negligence; namely, “proximate cause.” In essence, the Court’s decision provides that we had to show Starbucks improper securing of the lid was a “substantial factor” that caused the injury. Accordingly, as the Court ruled ” Based upon the facts presented, plaintiff has established a reasonable probability that her injury was caused by Starbucks” which allowed our lawsuit to proceed notwithstanding other case law requiring proof on the temperature of the coffee. The novelty of the case is the emphasis on “reasonable probability.” As indicated, the beauty of this decision is not only are you protecting your individual client on this case but it protects more consumers from acts of negligence on all types of accidents. The decision was significant enough to prompt its front page coverage in the New York Law Journal. We must commend the lead attorney from our office, Lamont Rodgers, Esq , on a job well done.”
We also commend both Tony Sacco and Lamont Rogers – we’re glad to see that they are so intent on keeping not only their clients protected – but future customers that could be injured in the same way.
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