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Can You Sue McDonald's if You Get Hurt in Their Parking Lot?

When you visit a McDonald's, the last thing you expect is to get injured. Unfortunately, accidents can happen, even in places as familiar as a fast-food restaurant. This was the case for Rose Mary, who fell and got hurt in a McDonald's parking lot. This blog post will help you understand who is responsible if you get hurt in a McDonald's parking lot and what you can do about it.

Rose Mary parked her car in a McDonald's parking lot and was walking towards the restaurant when she tripped on a piece of uneven pavement. The pavement was painted with a yellow crosshatch, which made the defect harder to see. Rose Mary fell and got seriously injured. She decided to sue McDonald's for her injuries.

McDonald's admitted that they owned the property where Rose Mary fell. However, they argued that they did not own or operate the restaurant business itself. The restaurant was actually run by a franchisee, a separate company that pays McDonald's to use their name and sell their food.

The court looked at whether McDonald's had control over the parking lot where the accident happened. In legal terms, if you control a property, you are responsible for keeping it safe. McDonald's said they did not control the "day-to-day activities" of the restaurant, but they did not clearly say whether they controlled the condition of the parking lot.

Why Is Control Important?

If McDonald's controlled the parking lot, they would be responsible for making sure it was safe. This means fixing any dangerous conditions, like the uneven pavement that caused Rose Mary to fall. If they did not control it, the responsibility might fall on the franchisee who runs the restaurant.

The court decided that McDonald's did not provide enough evidence to show they were not responsible for the parking lot. Because of this, the court could not grant McDonald's request to dismiss the case. This means Rose Mary can continue her lawsuit against McDonald's.

If you get hurt in a McDonald's parking lot, it's important to know who controls the property. Even if the restaurant is run by a franchisee, McDonald's might still be responsible for keeping the parking lot safe. If you are injured, you may have the right to sue for damages to cover your medical bills and other costs.

What Should You Do If You Get Hurt?

  1. Seek Medical Attention: Your health is the most important thing. Make sure you see a doctor as soon as possible.
  2. Document the Scene: Take pictures of where you fell and what caused your fall. This can be crucial evidence.
  3. Report the Incident: Let the restaurant management know about your injury.
  4. Consult a Lawyer: A legal expert can help you understand your rights and guide you through the process of seeking compensation.

Accidents can happen anywhere, even in places as familiar as a McDonald's parking lot. Understanding who is responsible can be complicated, especially when franchise agreements are involved. If you find yourself injured, it's important to know your rights and take the necessary steps to protect yourself.

By knowing who controls the property and following the right steps, you can make sure you get the help and compensation you deserve.

McDonald's Workers Compensation Claims

While this blog post primarily focuses on injuries that happen to customers in McDonald's parking lots, it's also important to touch on what happens if you’re a worker at McDonald's and you get injured on the job. This is where workers' compensation comes into play.

What is Workers' Compensation?

Workers' compensation is a type of insurance that provides benefits to employees who get injured or become ill as a direct result of their job. This can include medical expenses, lost wages, and rehabilitation costs. It's designed to help workers get back on their feet without having to sue their employer.

Who is Eligible?

If you are an employee at a McDonald's restaurant, whether it's owned by the corporation or a franchisee, you are generally eligible for workers' compensation if you get injured while performing your job duties. This includes injuries from slips and falls, burns, cuts, and any other work-related accidents.

Steps to Take if You’re Injured

  1. Report the Injury Immediately: As soon as you get injured, notify your supervisor or manager. This is crucial for starting the workers' compensation process.
  2. Seek Medical Attention: Go to a doctor or hospital to get your injury treated. Make sure to inform the medical staff that your injury is work-related.
  3. Document Everything: Keep records of your injury, medical visits, and any communication with your employer about the incident.
  4. File a Workers' Compensation Claim: Your employer should provide you with the necessary forms to file a claim. Fill them out as accurately as possible and submit them promptly.
  5. Follow Up: Stay in touch with your employer and the workers' compensation insurance company to ensure your claim is being processed.

What Benefits Can You Receive?

  • Medical Expenses: Coverage for doctor visits, hospital stays, surgeries, medications, and physical therapy.
  • Lost Wages: Compensation for the income you lose while you are unable to work.
  • Rehabilitation Costs: Costs for any necessary rehabilitation to help you return to work.
  • Disability Benefits: If your injury leads to a temporary or permanent disability, you may be eligible for additional benefits.

What If Your Claim Is Denied?

Sometimes, workers' compensation claims can be denied. If this happens, you have the right to appeal the decision. You may need to provide additional evidence or undergo an independent medical examination. Consulting a lawyer who specializes in workers' compensation can be very helpful in navigating the appeals process.

Additional Resources

If you need more detailed information on handling injuries at McDonald's, whether as a customer or an employee, you can check out this comprehensive guide on McDonald's Workers Compensation Claims. This resource covers various aspects of premises liability and workers' compensation claims, offering valuable insights and guidance.


Whether you are a customer or an employee, knowing your rights and the appropriate steps to take after an injury is crucial. For McDonald's workers, workers' compensation is there to provide financial and medical support if you get hurt on the job. Always report injuries immediately, seek medical attention, and keep thorough documentation to ensure you receive the benefits you are entitled to.

By understanding the workers' compensation process, you can protect yourself and ensure that you get the help you need to recover and return to work.