Tuesday, 17 Feb, 2009 Offbeat

The 2009 Stella Awards Reveals Most Shocking US Lawsuits


This week at the annual Stella Awards, some of the most frivolous and shocking lawsuits have been revealed to the public. It is worth mentioning that Stella Awards is given each year to those who file outrageous lawsuits. The award was named after Stella Liebeck, a woman who in 1992 sued McDonalds for delivering a very hot coffee which she spilled onto her lap and had three degree burns. She won the lawsuit and was awarded with $640,000.

This year some of the most frivolous cases included the case of a Washington lawyer who filed a lawsuit against dry cleaners who lost his trousers. He demands $65,000 compensation for "mental suffering, inconvenience and discomfort".

UPDATED: A number of case were fabricated and never really happened. These cases include an "updated" note, others are true.

There's also the case of a woman who threw her drink at her boyfriend while sitting in a Philadelphia restaurant with him, then she slipped on the spilt drink, broke her tailbone and won her case against the owners of the restaurant, being awarded $113,500. UPDATED: thanks to one of our visitors, Nelson Cruz, we inform you that this particular case was fabricated.

This year's award also went to Mrs Merv Grazinski of Oklahoma. She filed a lawsuit against Winnebago for $1.75 million after crashing her motor home, which was moving at a speed of 70mph, while she was making a sandwich for herself. She stated that the company that produced the motor home did not inform her that it is not allowed to leave the wheel when she set the vehicle on cruise control. UPDATED: thanks to one of our visitors, Nelson Cruz, we inform you that this particular case was fabricated.

A woman from Claymont, Delaware, received $12,000 after suing the owner of a nightclub. Kara Walton stated that she fell and knocked out her two front teeth when she attempted to sneak in the nightclub through the bathroom window. UPDATED: thanks to one of our visitors, Nelson Cruz, we inform you that this particular case was fabricated.

Surprisingly Jerry Williams, of Little Rock, Arkansas, managed to receive $14,500 compensation plus medical expense after he was bitten on the bottom by the dog that belonged to his next door neighbor. It seems that there's nothing wrong here, but here's a little detail - while the dog was on a chain, Mr Williams climbed over a fence and several times shot the dog with a pellet gun. UPDATED: thanks to one of our visitors, Nelson Cruz, we inform you that this particular case was fabricated.

It was a successful year for criminals as well. Pennsylvania court ruled that the insurance company must pay Terrence Dickson of Bristol, Pennsylvania, $500,000 because he received physical and moral damages after being trapped for 8 days in a garage of a family whose house he burgled.

Another thief, Carl Truman, 19, of Los Angeles, California, was awarded with $74,000 plus medical expenses after his neighbor hit his hand when Truman attempted to steal his hubcaps. UPDATED: thanks to one of our visitors, Nelson Cruz, we inform you that this particular case was fabricated.

Texas court ruled that the owners of a store must pay Kathleen Robertson of Austin, Texas $80,000 plus medical expenses after the woman tripped over a running kid and as a result broke her ankle. The child was her own son.

During the current economic recession, lawyers warn that a lot of desperate people will most likely file even more outrageous lawsuits, reports The Telegraph. A family law specialist from California, Jim Fedalen, considers that there are going to be even more scams. "I have no doubt we're going to see a big increase in scams, such as people deliberately planting nasty objects in their sandwiches then trying to sue the burger joint," he said.

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11 votes

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46 votes

//15 Dec 31, 2010 10:05 AM | posted by: Flu-Bird
As SHAKESPEAR once wrote AND LET US THE FIRST THINGS WE DO LET US KILL ALL THE LAWYERS america needs tort reform but its unlikly with the demacRATS is control
54 votes

//14 Oct 12, 2010 08:45 PM | posted by: abbey
now why do they lie to us it is so so so so bad
54 votes

//13 Oct 12, 2010 08:36 PM | posted by: clay
this is so stupid
51 votes

//12 Feb 25, 2010 07:29 PM | posted by: Peter Dawson
Reviewing info from an old seminar on legal issues, I found the "2003 Stella Awards" list. In the hope of finding an updated and equally entertaining version, I went to "Stella Awards 2009" on the internet. Imagine my disappointment in finding the ones on the list had not changed. Was 2003 the year you stopped updating? Is there nothing new to look forward to?
54 votes

//11 Feb 01, 2010 10:17 PM | posted by: Re K oJ
wow, this is boring. if you agree, comment to Re K oJ hehe **** you
52 votes

//10 Nov 18, 2009 05:14 PM | posted by: mrexcellent [InfoMANIAC]
hey Alxandra! how about English!? did you notice people writing english words here! I don't mind of course you speaking Danish, Swedish or Norwegian (sorry, I'm pretty bad in scandinavian languages), but for the sake of understanding and a good discussion it is more convenient when everydobe speaks the same language... I'd pretty much gladly converce in German, but who else would?

ok, soryy, for the introduction, but I'd say that the cases are 100% fabricated, just as Mr. RED said! and the McDonalds case is a shame on this giant company!
57 votes

//9 Oct 30, 2009 08:06 PM | posted by: Alexandra
Her er en retssag for dig: Min fætter så "Family Guy", og besluttede at ødelægge en fjendes hus med en tank, ligesom den episode, hun så. Hun sagsøges skaberen af Family Guy for ikke at sætte en advarsel om, at seerne ikke skulle forsøge at efterligne, hvad de tegn gjorde. Og gæt hvad? Hun vandt! Hun var skyldige 7000000 dollars.
65 votes

//8 Aug 11, 2009 02:25 PM | posted by: danny
57 votes

//7 Jul 08, 2009 09:32 PM | posted by: RED
The story about the woman who tripped on her own son is a known fabricated story as is the one about the burglar in Pennsylvania. So, I guess only the strory about the JUDGE who sued for his pants is true.

By the way, the story about the McDonald's coffee is the most misstated legal story ever told. The woman got all that money because McDonald's was caught selling BOILING hot coffee (not just hot coffee) on purpose to avoid having customers getting refills. There had been hundreds of complaints about the boiling coffee before the incident. Assistant managers at the same store where the incident happenned had complained to superiors about the situation with the coffee. The lady's burns were so bad that she required 2 skin grafts. Also, the money she got was mostly for punitive damages desgined to punish McDonald's for endangering the welfare of its customers.
56 votes

//6 Mar 08, 2009 05:21 AM | posted by: mr. wood
what tha heck is this????????????????
51 votes

//5 Mar 02, 2009 02:20 PM | posted by: Nelson Cruz
The lost pants lawsuit is true, and was the award winner for 2007:

The rest are fake:
58 votes

//4 Feb 28, 2009 07:57 AM | posted by: Raelynne
The man who sued the dry cleaner over his pants demanded 65 million dollars not 65 thousand. And I believe he lost.
58 votes

//3 Feb 20, 2009 08:31 PM | posted by: Robyn
So when are you going to mention the 2009 awards??? I guess the above were a good opening to the new ones...but most of us with any interest in the Stella awards have read these years ago.

Better than that, did you copy this from the UK site or did they copy you???
62 votes

//2 Feb 17, 2009 04:09 PM | posted by: alcotrazz [InfoMANIAC]
//1, Spanner
what're talking about? the link you gave leads to a 2001 list? what does it have to do with 2009?

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