Two McDonald’s customers with a beef about cheese filed a federal lawsuit alleging the restaurant giant is engaged in deceptive and misleading business practices in its sale of the Quarter Pounder with cheese.
McDonald’s used to sell four items in the Quarter Pounder category, with or without cheese, with prices ranging from 30 to 90 cents more for cheese than without, then at some point it ended this practice in-store, according to the lawsuit.
"These products cannot be purchased either separately or as part of a value meal, without the customer being overcharged and being compelled to pay for unwanted and undelivered cheese," the lawsuit states, according to The Miami Herald. "McDonald's is being unjustly enriched by these practices, because it receives payment for cheese it does not deliver to its customers."
Cynthia Kissner of Broward County and Leonard Werner of Miami-Dade County filed the class-action lawsuit May 8 asking for $5 million, according to the Herald.
The Quarter Pounder was trademarked in 1975 with the following ingredients; a frozen beef patty, sesame seed bun, tablespoon of diced fresh onion, mustard, ketchup and two Heinz pickle slices, according to USA Today.
McDonald’s currently lists the ingredients as; a quarter-pound beef patty, sesame seed bun, pasteurized process American cheese, ketchup, pickle slices and onion.
The current menu only lists the Quarter Pounder with cheese, however customers have more sandwich options through the restaurant's app, Andrew Lavin, the attorney who filed the suit, told the Herald.
“So McDonald's is offering two specific products: one is a Quarter Pounder and one is a Quarter Pounder with Cheese,” Lavin said. But if you go into the restaurant that option is not available to you."
McDonald’s has 21 days to respond to the lawsuit.
"We do not believe the claims in this lawsuit have legal merit," the restaurant told USA Today. "The advertised Quarter Pounder burger comes with cheese. We try to accommodate our customers' requests by allowing them to customize their orders, such as a Quarter Pounder with no cheese."
Credit: Jason Getz / Jason.Getz@ajc.com