Related Videos

Top 10 Most Ridiculous Lawsuits of All Time

VO: Chris Masson
Script written by Nathan Sharp Some people will try anything for a quick buck. Join WatchMojo.com as we count down our picks for the Top 10 Most Ridiculous Lawsuits of All Time. For this list, we're looking at lawsuits throughout history that made the most outlandish and ridiculous claims, whether the plaintiffs won or not . Special thanks to our user Sosa2493 for submitting the idea using our interactive suggestion tool at WatchMojo.comsuggest
Share
WatchMojo

You must register to a corporate account to download this video. Please login

Transcript

Top 10 Most Ridiculous Lawsuits of All Time


Some people will try anything for a quick buck. Welcome to WatchMojo.com, and today we're counting down our picks for the top ten most ridiculous lawsuits of all time.

For this list, we're looking at lawsuits throughout history that made the most outlandish and ridiculous claims, whether the plaintiffs won or not. We're excluding purposefully silly ones like State Senator Ernie Chambers suing God to make a satirical jab at the absurdity of certain lawsuits. Only serious, legit lawsuits are allowed here - no matter how silly they may be. And trust us, they get silly.

#10: Morse v. Frederick

High school and weed are an unfortunate combination, and the pot culture can sometimes create decidedly silly behavior. Case in point: in 2002, the principal of a high school suspended student Joseph Frederick after he put up a banner with the words “Bong Hits 4 Jesus” across from the school during an event was supervised by the school. And what was said event, you ask? The Olympic Torch Relay. Naturally, Frederick took the opportunity to sue and claimed his right to free speech was violated. He was initially dismissed by the Federal District Court. But the decision was ultimately reversed on appeal and Frederick was awarded a $45,000 settlement out of court.

#9: Joseph v. National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) et al

In January of 2014, astronomers revealed an interesting photo of the Martian surface, showing a strange rock that had not present in the same spot twelve days earlier. It naturally brought considerable attention before scientists deduced that it was likely knocked into place by the Rover’s wheels. Undeterred, Californian Rhawn Joseph filed legal papers, claiming that NASA wasn't doing enough to study what he believed to be a living organism and a sign of life on Mars. We're excited about such a prospect, but… this one’s just a rock, dude.

#8: Heckard v. Jordan and Heckard v. Nike

In this case of celebrity lookalike versus a celebrity (and the company that made said celebrity famous), an African-American man from Portland, Oregon named Allen Heckard sued both NBA star Michael Jordan AND Nike for $416 million each. Why? Heckard was tired of all the emotional pain and injury he was supposedly suffering from being constantly mistaken for the ex-Chicago Bulls player whenever he was out in public. Though they differ in age and height, Heckard and Jordan both have shaved heads and wear a single earring – yet one’s a famous athlete and the other’s an airport shuttle driver with a criminal record. In the end, Heckard dropped the suit before going to trial and without being given any money.

#7: Clardy v. Nike

If you ask us, there's nothing more disgusting than an immoral person blaming someone, or in this case something, else for his or her crimes. A pimp named Sirgiorgio Sanford Clardy was given a 100-year prison sentence after he viciously beat the customer of one of his prostitutes with his Air Jordans. Clardy repeatedly stomped on the dude’s face, resulting in the victim requiring stitches and plastic surgery. According to Clardy this was Nike's fault, and he sued the company for not putting a label in the product warning consumers that they could be used as deadly weapons! Yeah… your prison sentence has nothing to do with the fact that you stomped on a guy’s head.

#6: Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) v. Walton

The Recording Industry Association of America is known for being bloodthirsty creatures, and not even the deceased can escape its wrath. Proof? They attempted to sue an 83-year-old woman for making 700 songs publicly available on the Internet – but they sued her following her death. And the filed lawsuit came AFTER her daughter responded to a warning letter with a copy of her mother’s death certificate to RIAA lawyers. Sorry guys, but we're pretty sure that you're not winning this one.

#5: Overton v. Anheuser-Busch Co.

Beer is certainly delicious, there's no denying that, but we'd be hard pressed to find anyone who believes that it has magical powers. However, Richard Overton was certainly fooled, as he sued Bud Light in 1991 for their false and misleading advertisements. In their commercials, male drinkers are often in tropical settings surrounded by gorgeous women. Overton’s lawsuit concluded those particular representations of life after drinking the beer were “untrue,” and therefore, that would fall under false advertisement. His case was suitably dismissed. Interestingly, Overton doesn’t drink alcohol. He filed the lawsuit when his young kids became entranced by Bud spokesdog Spuds Mackenzie.

#4: Kalkan v. Nolan and Warner Bros.

Helped by its grim tone and dark subject matter, “The Dark Knight” became an immensely popular film in 2008. All this success became an issue for the mayor of a city called Batman, located in Turkey. In his batcrap crazy lawsuit, Huseyin Kalkan made plans to sue Warner Bros. and director Christopher Nolan for using the name “Batman” without the city’s permission… as if the capital of Batman Province owned the rights to the name. To make matters worse, Kalkan even blamed the movie for a rise of unsolved murders and suicides in the area, claiming that “The Dark Knight” has made a negative psychological impact on the city’s residents. The suit doesn’t appear to have ever seen its day in court… and Kalkan was also sentenced to jail for promoting terrorism the same year.

#3: Sevier v. Apple Inc.

We're not going to lie. There's a lot of porn on the Internet. That said, it isn't Apple’s fault, no matter what Chris Sevier thinks. Sevier complained that his Apple product didn't come with a porn filter, and argued in his lawsuit that because of that, he became addicted to pornography, which in turn destroyed his life. While we can understand his argument about the lack of a filter, it’s unbelievable to think he’s blaming Apple for his desire for “younger, more beautiful girls featured in porn videos [rather] than his wife”. We don't know about you, but random porn sites don't just pop up on our computers... you gotta actively search for that!

#2: Rosenberg v. Harwood and Google

Google Maps is an astounding creation, as it gives directions to almost anywhere in the world. However, the web mapping service doesn't account for… cars. Lauren Rosenberg was following Google's walking directions, which led her onto a busy highway with no sidewalks. She “intelligently” kept right on following the highway and was subsequently hit by a car. As a result, she sued both Google and the driver – Patrick Harwood - for $100,000, but her claims were ultimately dismissed. We don't think Google needs the explicit statement of “please don't walk into moving cars” on their directions, but apparently they do. Oh, and by the way, it was nighttime when Rosenberg ventured out onto this highway.

Before we take our silliest lawsuit to court, here are a few honorable mentions.

Young v. Ostergaard and Zellitti
Woman Sues Teenage Neighbors for Delivering Homemade Cookies and Causing Her an Anxiety Attack

Aitken v. NBC
‘Fear Factor’ Viewers Sues Network for Rat-Eating Contest

Pearson v. Custom Cleaners
Man Sues Dry Cleaner After the Loss of a Pair of Pants Caused Mental Anguish

Jack Ass v. Viacom Inc.
Man Who Legally Changed His Name to “Jack Ass” Sues “Jackass”

Thompson v. Monroe College
Woman Sues School Because She Was Unable to Find a Job After Graduating

#1: Lucas v. McDonald’s

While you've all probably heard the story about the woman who sued McDonald’s for serving their coffee too hot and her suffering of 3rd degree burns, at least that one had legal grounds. Nothing trumps Webster Lucas’ lawsuit though, in which he sued McDonald's for $1.5 million after a confrontation stemming from a request for more napkins. Instead of giving him more napkins, the manager allegedly resorted to racist remarks and cursed at Lucas instead, which left the customer distressed, unable to work and demanding a cool $1.5 million. It's not that being discriminated against isn't legitimately distressing, but the thing is Mr. Lucas seems to have a history of suing fast food joints. He's reportedly sued Jack-in-the-Box twice, and also brought suit against Walmart and Denny's.

Do you agree with our list? Can you think of any silly lawsuits? For more sane top tens published every day, be sure to subscribe to WatchMojo.com.
Comments

Sign in to access this feature

Related Blogs