History’s Craziest Lawsuits

For several years, we’ve lived in a culture where frivolous lawsuits are a fact of life. Sometimes, cases brought to court are so ridiculous that we just have to point and laugh, or at least point and wonder what people are thinking. Today, we’re bringing you a handful of legitimate, and legitimately ridiculous civil cases that were brought to court (although luckily, they didn’t get very far).

Bud Light’s History of False Advertising.

In 1991, a Michigan resident named Richard Overton sued Anheuser-Busch, the makers of Bud Light for false and misleading advertising. Overton claims to have suffered emotional distress, mental injury and financial loss in excess of $10,000 due to the misleading Bud Light ads. Overton was apparently emotionally harmed when his beer drinking didn’t bring bikini-clad women and party dogs appear before him. The court dismissed all claims.

The Best Lawsuits are the Lawsuits You File on Yourself.

Robert Lee Brock of Virginia filed a $5 million lawsuit back in 1995. The defendant in the lawsuit was himself. Brock claimed that he violated his own civil rights and religious beliefs by allowing himself to commit grand larceny and breaking and entering. Brock was sentenced to 23 years for his crimes. Since being in prison prevented him from producing an income, he expected the state to pay his claim. This case was thrown out.

Who Doesn’t Love a Good Scare?

Cleanthi Peters doesn’t. In 2000, Peters sued Universal Studios for $15,000, claiming extreme fear, mental anguish and emotional distress after visiting the Halloween Horror Nights attraction at Universal Studios.

When TV Goes Too Far.

Ever been grossed out by a reality show? So has Austin Aitken. In 2005, Aitken attempted to sue NBC for $2.5 million, claiming that an episode of “Fear Factor” caused him “suffering, injury and great pain” after watching contestants eat rats. Aitken became dizzy and light-headed, vomited and ran into a doorway after the stunt. The case was deemed frivolous and thrown out. Television can definitely be disgusting, but does that entitle us to millions?

While many cases have merit and are worth pursuing legal action, there’s been a handful that absolutely didn’t.


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