What are my rights if I have burns to my mouth and face from eating a microwavable food product that was prepared according to directions?

UPDATED: Sep 23, 2014

Advertiser Disclosure

It’s all about you. We want to help you make the right legal decisions.

We strive to help you make confident insurance and legal decisions. Finding trusted and reliable insurance quotes and legal advice should be easy. This doesn’t influence our content. Our opinions are our own.

UPDATED: Sep 23, 2014Fact Checked

Get Legal Help Today

Compare Quotes From Top Companies and Save

secured lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

What are my rights if I have burns to my mouth and face from eating a microwavable food product that was prepared according to directions?

I t had cheese in it which spilled out burning my mouth and face. Is it worth pursuing legal action? I’m generally not a litigious person but I’m concerned this burn may scar or may have done longer term damage inside my mouth. The burn is clearly visible, causing discomfort and blistering. I have not seen a doctor (mainly because this will not be covered by health insurance and I cannot afford an expensive medical appointment). This just happened in the last 12 hours and I’m wondering if I should see a doctor for documentation just in case it does develop into a bigger issue.

Asked on September 23, 2014 under Personal Injury, Iowa


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

First, bear in mind that the *only* compensation to which you might be entitled, even if the manufacturer is liable (see below) would be 1) medical costs; 2) lost wages (if any); and 3) "pain and suffering" if you suffer long lasting (weeks, months, or more) of significant life impairment of disfigurement...and you have to prove that the damage was caused by the burn...and you have to take reasonable steps (like medical care) to reduce the injury or help it heal faster. Essentially, without medical care, you can't recovery anything--you failed to take steps to treat the injury; will have difficulty proving the cause of it; and will not  have medical costs to recover. And in addition, a judge or jury will wonder how serious the injury could have been, if you didn't bother seeing a doctor.  So if you don't see a doctor, you really don't have a claim.

Even if you do see a doctor, you might not have a claim. Even if you followed directions, you'd have to show that you did not bite into the food too quickly (e.g. bit into something obviously too hot without giving it a chance to cool); if it would have been reasonble or normal to wait awhile after cooking to bite in, the injury would likely be your fault, legally, not the manufacturer's.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

Get Legal Help Today

Find the right lawyer for your legal issue.

secured lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption