If you've ever been short on cash, you can understand why some people do the weirdest things to get money. Get Rich Quick schemes, pawning family heirlooms, and offering out services you're good at for cash in return, they're all ways people try to make some quick money.
But one method that's rising in popularity is suing someone for a large sum of money.
One guy even sued himself.
1. Aitken v. NBC
Austin Aitken sued NBC after watching an episode of the hit show Fear Factor. An avid watcher of the show, Aitken claims one challenge was so grotesque it made him "vomit and run into a wall." The challenge involved contestants eating blended up rats. He says it was so awful, his blood pressure rose and he became disoriented. Aitken sued the network for $2.5 million, but claimed it was an arbitrary amount and that all he wanted was to send a message to networks saying the show was too graphic. He lost the case, and hopefully learned how to change the channel on his TV.
2. Chiscolm v. Bank Of America
One man, Dalton Chiscolm, was fed up after having to call the bank multiple times to settle some incorrectly deposited checks. Chiscolm said the calls were frustrating, so he sued Bank Of America for "1,784 BILLION, TRILLION Dollars" which is more money than there is on the planet. In addition to the direct deposit of his initial ask, he also demanded another $200,164,000 for his troubles. The case was thrown out because there was no federal cause of action for the suit, and also probably because it's flat out ridiculous.
3. Connell v. Tarala
In 2011, Jennifer Connell (or Auntie Jen) sued her 8-year-old nephew for $127,000 after his "negligent hug" caused her to fall over and break her wrist. Auntie Jen claimed her nephew "should have known that a forceful greeting such as the one delivered by the defendant to the plaintiff could cause the harms and losses suffered by the plaintiff.”
It turns out this whole lawsuit was actually due to a loophole in order to get the insurance carrier to pay up. Probably put a bit of a damper on Christmas dinner, no?
4. Plaintiffs v. Fresh Inc.
A class action lawsuit against Fresh Inc. was put in motion after it was alleged the company was jilting customers out of lip balm. According to the lawsuit, the twist-up mechanism prevents customers from using all of the advertised contents, calling it a violation of California’s Fair Packaging and Labeling Act. However, the case was thrown out when the company could prove that the product label clearly indicated the amount of usable lip balm in the stick, and that the extra balm at the bottom was actually bonus.
5. Moody v. Truck Company
A woman in Georgia successfully sued a truck company after she wasn't paying attention while walking and hit a ladder. Yes, really. DeToya Moody says she never saw the ladder, which was surrounded by bright orange cones, because she was staring at her cellphone. Her argument was that the ladder wasn't there the three other times she was walking so she wasn't expecting it. She suffered a mild concussion, post-traumatic headaches, and a "slight indentation" on her head. THe jury awarded Moody $161,000 after finding her only 8% at fault for the accident.
6. Brock v. Brock
In 1995, Robert Lee Brock sued himself for $5 million. An inmate at the Indian Creek Correctional Center, Brock was suing himself for violating his own civil rights and religious beliefs by getting so drunk he committed violent crimes, landing him a 23-year prison sentence for grand larceny, and breaking and entering. He assumed that because he had no money, that by suing himself the state would have to pay out the $5 million. The case was thrown out. You know what they say: don't assume, you only make a complete idiot of yourself and still get stuck in prison.
7. Kirkpatrick v. The City
A man who robbed a bank and pointed a gun at a deputy sued the city after he was shot two times. Kirkpatrick sued for $6.3 million to cover his medical bills, which were $300,000. He claimed the other officers on the scene failed to stop the deputy from "trying to execute him." No news on how this ended, but my guess is not well.
8. Bauermeister and Ramatowskwa v. New York (?)
Lucie Bauermesiter and Anna Ramatowska filed a suit with Bronx Supreme court after a gas explosion blocks away from them. On the surface, that seems legit. But then you find out the two women sued for $40 million after receiving "like, five or six scratches."
"Ramatowska said she got “like, five or six scratches’ when she went outside to inspect the blast site. Bauermeister didn’t suffer any physical injuries — but did say she is seeing a $175-an-hour psychologist to deal with the trauma," according to the NY Post.
People were flat-out offended by the lawsuit, since two people actually died in the explosion and 22 others were injured. A GoFundMe Page was started to raise money to purchase one-way tickets out of the state for the women.
9. Overton v. Anheuser-Busch
Richard Overton sued Anheuser-Busch for false advertising because Bud Light didn't make beautiful women appear on a beach. He wanted $10,000 for emotional and psychological distress caused by the deceptive marketing. The case was thrown out, and Overton should probably switch to water.
10. Peters v. Universal Studios
Cleanthi Peters sued Universal Studios for $15,000 because she found the Halloween Horror Night too scary. Peters claims she was so scared of the haunted house, she had emotional distress. She was also chased by a man with a chainsaw, causing her to trip and fall. Peters says after she fell, the character stood over her with the chainsaw in a "traumatic way." The case was thrown out. Scared at a haunted house? Imagine that.
11. Roller v. Blaine & Copperfield
David Roller filed a $2 million lawsuit against David Blaine, and a separate $50 million lawsuit against David Copperfield because he claims both men "stole [his] Godly powers." Roller says the two Davids used witchcraft to extort his powers. Neither of the cases stuck.
12. Hendrix v. The NFL
Terry Hendrix, an inmate in Colorado sued the NFL for $88 BILLION after officials overturned a call in the Dallas Cowboys' playoff loss. Wide receiver Dez Bryant appeared to make an amazing one-handed catch but it was ruled incomplete. Hendrix claims fans were cheated by the overturned call, so he sued the NFL VP of Officiating, the referee, and the league commissioner for "negligence, breach of fiduciary duty, and also reckless disregard.”
13. Woman v. Fed Ex
A woman in Florida sued Fed Ex after she tripped over a package left at her doorstep. She is seeking money for “severe physical pain, mental anguish and humiliation". The suit claims the package was left "too close in proximity to the door" and the woman was not properly notified.
14. Woman vs Lambert's Cafe
A woman sued Lambert's Cafe after being hit by a 'throwed roll', despite that being the restaurants legendary custom. Lambert's is "Home Of The Throwed Roll" because servers will often toss dinner rolls to customers. The woman was hit in the eye and sued for $25,000. One reporter pointed out that since "Home of the throwed roll" is posted all over the restaurant, "Lambert’s diners assume they are putting themselves at risk of being hit by a flying roll upon entering the establishment.”
15. Grazinski v. Winnebago
Mrs. Merv Grazinski took her 32-foot Winnebago on a road trip. She got on the freeway, set the cruise control at 70mph, then went to the back of the motorhome to make herself a sandwich. Unsurprisingly, the Winnebago crashed. Grazinski sued the company for not putting in the owner's manual that she couldn't leave the driver's seat when cruise control was engaged. A jury not only awarded her $1.75 million, but also a new Winnebago. The company has since updated its manual.
What's the craziest lawsuit you've ever heard of?