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In a survey conducted in 2015, the fifth most hated profession in the country was ‘lawyer’. The reason for this national antipathy may have been motivated by a variety of factors. Anyone who has suffered through a bitter divorce may well feel that it was made gratuitously more difficult by a lawyer who was avariciously obstinate. Criminals may also feel slighted by the law profession as well as anyone who has been sued, either personally or professionally. Some people would suggest that modern, Western society has become absurdly litigious. Perhaps the most cited case involved an elderly woman who sued McDonald’s because she burnt herself on coffee. The details of Liebeck vs. McDonald’s Restaurants are fascinating. The seventy-nine-year-old woman suffered serious third-degree burns and asked McDonald’s for $20,000 to cover her expenses. The coffee in question was 85 degrees Celsius which is significantly hotter than coffee served in other places. Cups at McDonald’s now bear a warning that coffee is hot, something that everyone knows, just as Stella Liebeck knew it too. It is obviously not there to protect the consumer. It is intended to give the corporation a means of defending itself in court. They shift the burden of responsibility from themselves to their customers. Liebeck was awarded punitive damages of $2.7 million which is roughly about two days of McDonald’s coffee sales. In any case, lawyers are a crucial, inseparable part of society. If you run your own business, you should be thankful for that fact.

Read More Lawyers: An Apologia

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