McDonald’s Corporation finds itself as the defendant in a proposed class action lawsuit in which the plaintiff takes issue with how the fast food giant advertises and displays on menus its Quarter Pounder, Quarter Pounder with cheese, Double Quarter Pounder and Double Quarter Pounder with cheese.
According to the 32-page complaint, McDonald’s had for years displayed and advertised its Quarter Pounder line of sandwiches as four separate menu items. At some point, the plaintiff says, McDonald’s stopped separately displaying the products and instead only listed the Quarter Pounder with cheese and Double Quarter Pounder with cheese as menu items and noted that the burgers could be purchased as part of a value meal.
“A customer who wanted a Quarter Pounder, was required to order and pay for a Quarter Pounder with cheese, which was given to the customer without cheese,” the case explains. “Similarly, when a customer wanted a Double Quarter Pounder, the customer was required to order and pay for a Double Quarter Pounder with cheese, which was given to the customer without cheese."
The plaintiff, a Florida resident, claims McDonald’s effectively forces customers to “pay for two slices of cheese, which they do not want, order, or receive” to buy their desired sandwich. The lawsuit couches McDonald’s Quarter Pounder switch as an anticompetitive business practice, an alleged “illegal tying arrangement,” in violation of federal antitrust laws.
The defendant charges between $.30 and $.90 to add cheese to the aforementioned sandwiches, the lawsuit notes.