It seems that ever since Liebeck v. McDonald’s Restaurants, a court case concerning Stella Liebeck suing the fast food chain after receiving severe burns from their scalding hot coffee, Americans have been rushing to file lawsuits for any inconvenience and rake in all the cash and publicity from doing so.
On May 6, 2017, Texas resident Brandon Vezmar arranged a date to watch “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2” with his Tinder match. When his date continuously texted during the film and refused to pay him the $17.31 he spent on that date, he took matters to the law and filed a lawsuit.
Controversy followed the topic throughout many social media platforms. Some say that this situation is a prime example of frivolous lawsuits, while others claim that Vezmar has a point, and that texting during a movie ruins the movie experience for everyone. Even “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2” director James Gunn tweeted his thoughts on the entire debacle.
Gunn said, “Why stop at suing? She deserves jail time!”
Although the tweet was most likely meant to be taken lightly, he does agree that texting during a movie is a rude habit that people should put a stop to.
Freshman Dasia Darden says, “Texting during movies is annoying and plain disrespectful, but I don’t think [Vezmar] should have sued her. How far is he [going to] go for $20?”
After two weeks of constant pressure and publicity, Vezmar’s date finally returned the $17.31.
Another thoughtless lawsuit is that of Lucie Bauermeister and Anna Ramatowska, who attempted to sue for $40 million after lying about getting a few cuts from an explosion nowhere near their immediate area. Ramatowska claimed her injuries were “like, five or six scratches.” Their fraudulent lawsuit was dismissed.
Homeless man Bernard Anderson Bey wanted a way to finally earn some money, so he sued his parents for neglect. He made several claims on their negative influence on his life and how he grew up to be a sad man because of how they raised him. In his lawsuit, he demanded that they give him their Domino’s Pizza stores. Fortunately, the case was dismissed. Not even his siblings would support him through the obviously greedy, fake lawsuit.
Countless lawsuits exist only because people are desperate for cash. Some even go as far as to harm themselves and frame whoever they hope to collect payments from. Fraudulent and frivolous lawsuits give everyone a hard time, and a whole lot of money and time is wasted in the end.
Suing should be reserved for true, serious reasons. For example, Liebeck’s lawsuit was the total opposite of frivolous. McDonald’s employees were required to serve coffee ‘dangerously’ hot, and Liebeck, among many others, were forced to deal with the consequences of that policy. Liebeck suffered from third-degree burns where she spilled the coffee and required skin grafts to heal properly.
When the hospital bills rose too high, Liebeck was forced to sue McDonald’s. Even when going against the best, corporate lawyers of the trending fast food restaurant, justice still won. Liebeck gained $3 million for her extensive injuries, and McDonald’s created a new rule to serve coffee at safer temperatures.
Freshman Kayla Acevedo says, “I feel bad that a lot of people don’t know her true story, and that she gets a negative reputation for only trying to get justice. I’m glad she won the case and changed how things are run at McDonald’s. This case shouldn’t be the first thing people think of when they hear ‘frivolous cases’.”
The justice system is no joke, so people should review the time, money, and effort put into court cases before filing a fraudulent lawsuit for the smallest inconvenience.
What requirements should a serious lawsuit contain before being taken to court?