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Q: research articles ( Answered 5 out of 5 stars,   1 Comment )
Subject: research articles
Category: Reference, Education and News > Consumer Information
Asked by: 211563-ga
List Price: $20.00
Posted: 26 Jun 2005 11:01 PDT
Expires: 26 Jul 2005 11:01 PDT
Question ID: 537155
I need a very strong newspaper or magazine article on how frivilous
lawsuits or fradulent lawsuits can ruin people's lives.  I would like
an article that cites instances about individuals sueing other
individuals, not companies preferably.  I' ve looked and can't find
what I want.  Randy
Subject: Re: research articles
Answered By: pinkfreud-ga on 26 Jun 2005 13:04 PDT
Rated:5 out of 5 stars
Howdy, Randy.

I have gathered some goodies that I hope you'll find useful. As you
have undoubtedly noticed, info about frivolous lawsuits is all over
the Internet, and finding the best articles takes a bit of sifting.
Most of the cases discussed involve businesses or other groups, rather
than individuals; this may be attributed to the "deep pockets"
syndrome, the tendency to sue the folks who have the most wealth.


From a Newsweek cover story called "Lawsuit Hell":

"Americans don?t just sue big corporations or bad people. They sue
doctors over misfortunes that no doctor could prevent. They sue their
school officials for disciplining their children for cheating. They
sue their local governments when they slip and fall on the sidewalk,
get hit by drunken drivers, get struck by lightning on city golf
courses?and even when they get attacked by a goose in a park (that one
brought the injured plaintiff $10,000). They sue their ministers for
failing to prevent suicides. They sue their Little League coaches for
not putting their children on the all-star team. They sue their
wardens when they get hurt playing basketball in prison. They sue when
their injuries are severe but self-inflicted, when their hurts are
trivial and when they have not suffered at all. Many of these cases do
not belong in court. But clients and lawyers sue anyway, because they
hope they will get lucky and win a jackpot."

Newsweek National News: Civil Wars

The 12-15-03 issue of Newsweek contains other stories on the subject. 


There is an entire website devoted to the thesis that litigation is
being widely misused. If you browse through this site, I you'll find
quite a bit of interesting material:

" explores an American legal system that too often
turns litigation into a weapon against guilty and innocent alike,
erodes individual responsibility, rewards sharp practice, enriches its
participants at the public's expense, and resists even modest efforts
at reform and accountability."


There are several "Citizens Against Lawsuit Abuse" sites on the Web.
Here are some excerpts:

"When the landlord learned that a family was illegally living in her
supposedly vacant rental home she evicted them. The squatters
responded by filing a lawsuit in small claims court demanding just
over $3,000 for the materials and time spent upgrading the house they
illegally occupied. The case was summarily dismissed by a San Antonio
judge but the landlord, a Houston resident, missed a day of work to
defend herself in court, and was left with a repair list of her own:
replacing broken windows, cleaning up a messy paint job and removing
carpet patches affixed with sticky tape that had ruined the home?s
hardwood floors."

Citizens Against Lawsuit Abuse, Houston 

"A Levittown, Pa. teenager sued her former softball coach for $700,000
in damages. She claims that bad coaching cost her a college athletic

Citizens Against Lawsuit Abuse, Houston

"A tort law professor at Pace University pulled the seat out from
under one of his students in order to demonstrate personal injury
lawsuits. Ironically, the student is now suing the professor for
?severe mental and physical anguish for pulling the stunt?."

Citizens Against Lawsuit Abuse, Houston

"A 27 year-old Michigan man was awarded $200,000 after claiming a
rear-end auto collision with a truck turned him into a homosexual. The
man filed suit against the owners of the truck, alleging that the
accident left him unable to carry on a normal sexual relationship with
his wife. Furthermore, the man left his wife, moved in with his
parents and began frequenting gay bars and perusing homosexual
literature. In addition to the $200,000 awarded to the man, the jury
also awarded $25,000 to his wife...

A New Mexico man filed a lawsuit against his ex-girlfriend for getting
pregnant without his consent. She claimed the pregnancy was accidental
but sued him for child support. He responded by suing her for breach
of contract, fraud and conversion of property-his semen-for getting
pregnant when he thought she was taking birth control pills...

A writer was sued for $60 million after writing a book about a
convicted serial killer. Although the inmate is on death row, he
claimed he was innocent in all 16 murders, so the characterization of
him as a serial killer was false and misleading and 'defamed his good
name.' The case was thrown out of court in 46 seconds, but only after
the writer's publisher incurred $30,000 in legal fees."

Citizens Against Lawsuit Abuse, Houston

Other local Citizens Against Lawsuit Abuse sites:

California Citizens Against Lawsuit Abuse: Hall of Shame

Orange County Citizens Against Lawsuit Abuse

Texas Citizens Against Lawsuit Abuse: Lawsuit Horror Stories

Many more "Citizens Against Lawsuit Abuse" groups may be found with
the use of this search string:

Google Web Search: "citizens against lawsuit abuse"


Some of the outrageous lawsuits described on various websites turn out
to be hoaxes. The Snopes Urban Legends Reference Pages has a page
which debunks a phony list of frivolous lawsuits, but provides some
real ones:

Snopes Urban Legends Reference Pages


Here you'll find a great list of "Looney Lawsuits" from the American
Tort Reform Association:

American Tort Reform Association

From the list above, I found these cases in which individuals, rather
than businesses or organizations, were sued:

Startled Neighbor Successfully Sues Teens over Cookies and Won

Houses must now be built car-proof


A sad case which seems to prove that no good deed goes unpunished:

"In Durango, Colorado, where two high school teenagers were ordered to
pay almost $900.00 for startling their 49 year old neighbor while
delivering a surprise batch of cookies last July. Instead of going to
a dance and partying with their friends, these two girls baked cookies
for all of their neighbors. They then wrapped them in a pink or red
box and included a home made card that said 'have a great night'. The
two then delivered them to their neighbors around 10:30 at night. When
they rang one of their neighbor's doorbell, she did not answer, and
the two left the cookies on the doorstep... the lady was so startled
by this unsolicited event that she went to the emergency room the NEXT
day, not that night, because she was afraid she had suffered a heart
attack. She must not have been that afraid. The 'nice' neighbor then
sued the pair for her medical expenses and punitive damages. The court
did award the medical expenses, but not any punitive damages."


Another article about the case mentioned above:

Daily Trojan: Frivolous Lawsuits Have Gone Too Far


My Google search strategy:

Google Web Search: "frivolous OR fraudulent lawsuits"

Google Web Search: "lawsuit abuse"


I hope this helps!

Very best regards,
211563-ga rated this answer:5 out of 5 stars and gave an additional tip of: $10.00

Subject: Re: research articles
From: pinkfreud-ga on 26 Jun 2005 15:11 PDT
Many thanks for the five stars and the generous tip! I'm glad to have
been able to help.


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