These 8 Lawsuits Will Leave You Speechless
America sure seems to love spending its time litigating. While there are certainly lawsuits that are perfectly legitimate, there are others that seem a bit more, well… debatable. Here are a few that might have you wondering what else people could get sued over…
In 2017, a California woman claimed that the candy company misled her, as it listed “evaporated cane juice” as one of Jelly Belly Sports Beans’ ingredients, but not specifically sugar. Disclosure of ingredients is an important issue, and misleading consumers by using fancy language isn’t cool, by any means.
The woman believed that the product was sugar-free, and for that reason, a healthier option for a snack. That said, it would be reasonable to think that she could glance over at the package’s sugar content number to see that it clearly wasn’t sugar-free.
Jelly Belly stated that the entire lawsuit was “nonsense,” and motioned to have the case dismissed, pointing out that its package labels do list the exact sugar content for all to see. The court agreed, and dismissed the case in light of the plaintiff failing to produce valid evidence that the company had lied to her.
A Texas man made international headlines, becoming a not so shining example of pettiness. He even went so far as to hire a lawyer to sue a woman for putting him through what he called a “first date from hell.”
37-year-old Brandon Vezmar went on a date after matching with a woman on the dating app Bumble. When the pair met, Vezmar became particularly annoyed that his date allegedly spent the entire evening on her phone. For that reason, he attempted to sue her for the $17.31 that he spent to take her to the movies. She reimbursed him so he would finally drop the lawsuit and leave her in peace.
$5 Million Basketball
This one is a real head-scratcher. It showcases just how greedy some people can be, and the actions their greed can cause them to take. In 2016, a man in New York filed a lawsuit against a basketball manufacturer after his ball lost some of its air prematurely. The company Russell Brands was sued by Jaish Markos for apparently misleading him, even though they advertised that the ball would remain inflated for a single year. Markos believed this was worth a hefty $5 million, and surprisingly, the case remains open, as of this writing.
Red Bull (Doesn’t) Give You Wings
The energy drink company Red Bull ran an incredibly successful advertising campaign that included the slogan, “Red Bull: It gives you wings!” for a number of years. As it turns out, one person believed they should take that statement literally.
When the company was sued, they actually ended up losing. The courts sided with the bitter Red Bull drinkers who were hoping to get a physical performance boost from the drink (but found that wasn’t the case).
California resident Webster Lucas was eating at the fast food chain in Pacoima when he realized he didn’t have enough napkins, so he asked the manager for an extra one.
Apparently, the Mexican-American manager mumbled a statement that Lucas believed was racially discriminating. He wrote a letter of complaint stating that he couldn’t work as a result of the mental anguish that he suffered, and he addressed it to the general manager of the store. He asked for $1.5 million for his emotional distress.
Suing The Pants Off The Dry Cleaner
This is the tale of a judge (!) who appears to have judged his dry cleaner way too harshly. Roy Pearson brought pants to Custom Cleaners, but claimed that he never received the correct pair of pants back — an obvious betrayal of their “satisfaction guaranteed” sign. After much hemming and hawing, he sued the company for $67 million, but eventually dropped the claim to $54 million, citing inconvenience, mental suffering, and discomfort. But the case was all sewn up and ended seamlessly once the dry-cleaner produced Pearson’s pressed pants in court.
Junior Mints Are Full Of Hot Air
Angry snack customers banded together and took Tootsie Roll Industries, the maker of Junior Mints, to court, because they were very convinced there was too much air in the Junior Mints boxes. They believed that the company was deceiving buyers by leaving one-third of every Junior Mints box empty. Fortunately, a federal judge in New York had his fill of the claim and threw the case out (and probably an empty box of Junior Mints, too!), saying any “reasonable” customer expects some empty space inside each box.
Baseball Fan Cries Foul
Used car salesman Andrew Rector fell asleep during a New York Yankees game in July 2014. Nothing unusual there. But ESPN, who was broadcasting the game, zeroed in on Rector as he was snoozing, and the announcers more or less poked fun at him. Sensing that he could make some fast money off a quick catnap, Rector sued the network for defamation, demanding a whopping $10 million in damages. A judge threw out the case in 2015, ruling that the jokes about Rector didn’t reach the level of defamation.
While some people may believe they were victimized or misled by a company, not every issue is worth filing a lawsuit over. After court costs, a lot of these frivolous suits end up costing the initiator a lot of money.