Posts Tagged ‘juries’

Demand for $38 quadrillion, cont’d

Kevin at Lowering the Bar points out that the suit we reported on yesterday doesn’t actually carry the highest damages demand ever; it is topped by one man’s suit last year against Bank of America for 1.7 septillion dollars. In third place — maybe — is “a claim for three quadrillion and change filed by someone against the federal government after Hurricane Katrina.”

Meanwhile, the story of the $38 quadrillion lawsuit moves Adam Freedman at Ricochet to consider some perhaps drastic legal reform remedies.

June 23 roundup

  • Judge blocks sweeping Obama administration ban on new offshore drilling [Roger Pilon, Cato] Some reasons judge may have found ban irrational [Lowry, NRO, scroll to reader comment; Gus Lubin, Business Insider] More on Jones Act waivers in the Gulf [Bainbridge, earlier]
  • Connecticut AG Blumenthal launches investigation of Google Street View [Rick Green, Courant]
  • Florida judge tosses out $10 million libel verdict against St. Petersburg Times [St. P.T.]
  • Lawyer in British Columbia suspends practice after bizarre jury tampering charges [CBC]
  • “Disclosed to death”: why laws mandating disclosure are so overused and overbroad [Falkenberg, Forbes on work of Omri Ben-Shahar and Carl E. Schneider, via PoL]
  • Judge dismisses controversial Pennsylvania case against Johnson & Johnson over Risperdal marketing, Gov. Rendell had hired major donor to run suit on contingency [LNL, McDonald/NJLRA, earlier]
  • Rick Hills vs. Ilya Somin on federalism and constitutional enforcement of property rights [Prawfsblawg, Volokh]
  • Beware proposed expansion of Federal Trade Commission powers [Wood, ShopFloor]

May 27 roundup

Juries and insurance, cont’d

Regarding “That nice Mr. Smith does not have to pay this personally, does he?“, Australian correspondent Malcolm Park writes:

“One of my favorites regarding the jury’s generosity/magnanimity when dealing with someone else’s money is from Fred Shapiro’s Oxford Dictionary of American Legal Quotations (1993) page 106 quoting Samuel P. Sears, ‘In Defense of the Defense’, 25 Insurance Counsel Journal 428 at 429 (1958):

We have a judge in Boston named Donahue, who is indeed brilliant, but a character. A couple of years ago, a jury case was being tried before him, a personal injury case, and the jury sent a note in to him with a question asking if, even though there was not any liability, could they still give the plaintiff some money. The judge sent for the jury. He said to them, “I have your written question, and I assume from the question that you have found there is no liability.” The foreman said, “That is so, Your Honor.” He said, “All right, sign this slip then.”

After they had signed the slip, which directed a verdict for the defendant, he said, “I will now answer your question. You may retire to the jury room and pass the hat.”

U.K.: study finds jurors “fail to understand judges’ instructions”

“Two thirds of jurors sitting in British courts fail to understand what a judge tells them about important aspects of the law, risking serious miscarriages of justice, a study [based on 69,000 verdicts] concludes.” One possible response is a greater shift to written instructions from judges. [Telegraph] Among other conclusions of the Ministry of Justice study: “all-white juries do not discriminate against black defendants” and “men sitting on juries are less likely than women to listen to arguments and change their minds.” [Times Online]

January 5 roundup

  • Other motorist in fatal crash should have been detained after earlier traffic stop, says widow in suit against Kane County, Ill. sheriff’s office [Chicago Tribune]
  • Now with flashing graphic: recap of Demi Moore skinny-thigh Photoshop nastygram flap [Xeni Jardin, BoingBoing, Kennerly]
  • Blawg Review #245 is hosted by Charon QC;
  • Expensive, unproven, and soon on your insurance bill? State lawmakers mull mandate for autism therapy coverage [, Springfield, Missouri]
  • “NBC airs segment on Ford settlement: Lawyers get $25 million, plaintiffs get a coupon” [NJLRA]
  • “Drawing on emotion”: high-profile patent plaintiff’s lawyer Niro writes book on how to win trials [Legal Blog Watch]
  • “Virginia Tech faces lawsuit over student’s suicide” [AP/WaPo]
  • Maryland lawmaker’s Howard-Dean-style candor: “you take care of your base… It’s labor and trial lawyers that get Democrats in office” [Wood, ShopFloor]