Powerhouse Lawyer Engineers Hot Coffee Rematch

By all rights, a seven-year-old legal complaint involving a too-hot cup of Starbucks brand coffee, a Malibu mom, a Barnes & Noble in Calabasas and a scalded toddler should have run its course when dismissed in LA Superior Court in March 2009. But not when the husband of the plaintiff is leading entertainment attorney Marc Toberoff.

Anointed by recent Forbes guest columnist Nikki Finke as one of “the seven most powerful people in Hollywood” and a consistent frontrunner on THR‘s annual “Power Lawyer” rankings, Toberoff knows how to work the legal system. As a result, that 2009 dismissal was overturned late last month and a new trial is set for February.

We don’t mean to make light of Dahlia and Alex Toberoff’s 2002 experience, but the language of the December 27th five-page reversal document is often surreal. Here’s just a small sample:

Asked to clarify what happened, Mrs. Toberoff explained, “I can’t speculate as to the physics of it. All I know is that I was handed coffee that, despite being told to leave room for milk, there was no room for milk. It was filled to the brim, and it splashed – the excess splashed out.”

Given the rematch choice of Barnes & Noble or Toberoff & Associates, our money’s on the latte-r.