Thursday, June 30, 2005

Stupid Lawyers???

I share Mona Charen's outrage at some of the ridiculous lawsuits and awards people get for sheer stupidity (or cupidity) but I can't say that I blame the lawyers.

In her essay Stupid Lawyer Tricks she lists some of the outrageous compensations people receive for their own mistakes.

My beef is that it's the JURY who awards them! Sure, the lawyers who pursue these sorts of cases are ambulance chasers and sharks (e.g. John Edwards) but I blame the dumb jury for awarding them.

Her last one is a real shocker, but it's from our friends across the pond, the UK:

"Carl Murphy, 18, of Merseyside, England, has received 567,000 pounds for injuries sustained while criminally trespassing on the roof of a private warehouse in 1996, from which he fell 40 feet, sustaining multiple injuries. Murphy, who has convictions for robbery, burglary and assault, 'received his compensation after suing the company that owned the warehouse. He claimed that if the perimeter fence had not been in disrepair, he would not have been able to gain entry and suffer his injuries.' Although groups representing victims of crime expressed anger at his getting a sum 50 times higher than a murder victim's family could expect to receive from the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority, Murphy was unapologetic about his windfall, saying he planned to buy 'a few houses and a flash car' and [adding] 'this money is mine now and I'll do what I want.' Murphy 'was expelled from two schools in just over two years after his recovery, and his family blamed the fall for his bad behavior. His mother, Diane, and her partner, Kevin Parsons, both 36, are currently serving three years in prison for setting up a heroin and crack cocaine business from their council house.'"

I'm not sure if a jury or judges awarded the scum, but if it is the latter then I can rest easy that we are not the only country in the world with moronic judges.