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Sunday, December 21, 2008

Filing a multi-million dollar lawsuit for a pair of pants

The United Stated probably has one of the most developed legal system of the world. Cases move fast over there, and people are able to get justice quickly (if you leave out the inmates of the Guantanamo prison camp). However, as with any system, there is always scope for misuse, and when there is scope for misuse, there will be always be people who will try and exploit these possibilities. A lot of laws were raised in the past, and may contain clauses or loopholes that have not yet been filled, and people may be wanting to fill these gaps. So, here is a gentleman who has filed a case that wants to claim $54 million from a dry cleaner over a missing pair of pants:

A court Thursday rejected an appeal filed by a former administrative law judge who sued a dry cleaners for $54 million over a missing pair of pants. Pearson initially sought $67 million from the Chungs, calculating the amount by estimating years of legal violations, adding nearly $2 million in common law claims for fraud. The saga began in May 2005, when Pearson took several pairs of pants to Custom Cleaners for alteration as he prepared to start his new job as an administrative law judge. He alleged that among them was a pair of pants from a blue and maroon suit. When he came to collect his clothing, he said, the Chungs tried to give him a pair of charcoal gray pants that were not his.
He claimed millions of dollars in attorney fees and millions more in punitive damages for what he called fraudulent advertising under the law. He also claimed that a sign in the store's window promising "satisfaction guaranteed" was an unconditional warranty that required the defendants to honor any claim by any customer without limitation. The Chungs' attorney argued that no reasonable person would interpret the signs to mean an unconditional promise of satisfaction. District of Columbia Superior Court Judge Judith Bartnoff agreed, ruling that Custom Cleaners did not violate the city's Consumer Protection Act.

Such cases do have an impact on people. Legal fees can be fairly high, and in the past, it has been seen that even important personalities have had to raise money for feed to attorneys; so there is always a cost to frivolous cases. The United States does not seem to have a way to defer such frivolous cases, and because of legal feed, even if a person wins a case, the amount of money involved could end up harming them immensely.

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