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what is up with our court systems today?


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#1
AdreinDark

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im surprised at this. lately many people have been sueing companys for mishaps on THEIR parts.... why?? dont you have a sense of guilt or common sense? a lady sued mcdonalds for making her coffee too hot (well duh! coffee is generally HOT!) then someone else sued a company because he slipped on a wet floor and he broke his arm (and won! regardless of the fact that they had placed a sign up!)
I recently was arrested for breaking and entering in my OWN HOUSE!!!!! i mean come on! seriously? i locked my keys in the door and i went in through a window and opened my door. when i opened the door a cop was waiting with handcuffs! and then someone else i know got arrested because he defended himself in a fight! i mean the court expects us to sit outside nad wait for helop to arrive, and they also expect us to just lie down and take a beating! my freind had gottten into a fight at school and he hit a kid after the kid hit him 8 times! i think its justifyable to say it was slef defense!and yet he was charged with aussault and battery!, and a robber fell through a guys sunroof trying to rob him and he fell on a knife and cut himself- so he sued the ownere of the house!!! and got away with it! and got away with breaking and entering! what has our world come to letting these people get away with literally murder over "supposed " technicalitys! if people would tak ecare of their kids less people would have this problem, honestly. because if your able to spank your kid your kid will turn out right (normally) i mean ten years ago, my parent wooped my butt for the last time, and i still fear that getting into trouble, or smoking, or getting in a fight, will make my mom woop my butt!and im 18 years old.. i would never think to press charges on my own parents for beating me. i think the cause of it all is videos and video games...because people sit inside wayt too much and watch tv before they even take care of their own kids....
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#2
dsenette

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i locked my keys in the door and i went in through a window and opened my door. when i opened the door a cop was waiting with handcuffs!

yeah and when you explained that you lived there and produced ID that proved it was your address what happened? did he take you to jail and you went to court and had to have witnesses prove you lived there? i doubt it....i'd imagine that you told the cop you lived there...proved that you lived there and explained what happened and he went about his business....

if someone HAD broken into your house and the neighbors who called the cops, or the cop if he was just driving by had assumed someone had just locked themselves out of the house...then you'd be complaining in the opposite direction (dude! someone broke into my house and nobody did a thing!)

some of the other things are pretty stupid but it's just exploitation of laws that are there to protect people in legitimate settings.....the actual success rate of MOST of the lawsuits like that is very small....you just never hear of the ones that fail in court
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#3
PedroDaGR8

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sued mcdonalds for making her coffee too hot (well duh! coffee is generally HOT!) .


I have a friend in law school who explained this one to me better. As with many things in life things are not as they appear. In this case, these particular McDonalds was keeping their coffee at EXCESSIVELY high temperature. Much hotter than normal hot coffee. The reason being, it was too hot for anyone to drink quickly cutting down on costs because there were less refills (who knew coffee was so expensive).
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#4
AdreinDark

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hmm well both of you drive very good points, but the lady should know if your going to drink coffee that its going to be hot, although excessive tempatures is messed up and is an exploitation, the lady burned her mouth, witch you can do on any normal coffee that you brew at home, and as for the breaking and entering, i was arrested even though i showed rproof and i now have a year of probation as a turnh of it. Hopefully i can appeal this case though and i hope that we dont continue to lead lives with no morality, such as playing video games where you slaughter helpless people (GRAND THEFT AUTO series) and other abstract things. Normally we wouldnte think of these thing but honestly, i ve heard of someone trying t sue a company for the video game they rproduced because it game their son nightmares. the thing ism (or the point i was driving towards,), is that our nation has lost its morality in the things we do. Now were making laws just to make laws, or so it seems.i mean )0 tolerance for fighting at schools??? come on.. i f a kid hits you and you swing back, that used to be self defense. And if both partys of the fight were waiting for the other to swing, there would never be a fight would there? but now i saw a kid go to Juvy because he hit a kid after the kid hit him, thats unfair, as the other kid had started it and i dont think anyone should just lay down oand not fight.
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#5
farkinid

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Given that I'm not American, I can't really say that I am aware of how the American legal system works.

However, as a non lay person with regards to the British legal system, the situation in which a trespasser sues a house owner is known as occupiers liability. It is the duty of a house owner to ensure that his property is maintained. Therefore it is conceivable that a trespasser may sue. Still, I don't think a trespasser should have been allowed to escape liability for his burglary (assuming theft was proven).

In equity, there is a maxim which should operate in this situation. "He who comes to equity must come with clean hands". Basically, if burglary was proven, the burglar cannot profit from his wrong doing. Therefore, the house owner may be liable with regard to occupiers liability but the burglar would not receive a single penny from his wrong doing.

Sry bout the long post :)
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#6
Troy

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i would never think to press charges on my own parents for beating me

As a father, I have seriously thought it through - what on earth would I acheive by "beating" my own children? I would teach my children that it's okay to enforce control by physical domination. This is something I just cannot agree with, and while I remember getting the odd smack when I was growing up (and don't hold any grudges against it), I just can't follow suit with my own children. Hitting is abuse.


i f a kid hits you and you swing back, that used to be self defense. And if both partys of the fight were waiting for the other to swing, there would never be a fight would there?

If a kid hits you, and you swing back, that's called fighting. If a kid hits you and you block him and back up, that's self defense. It's a tough call to make, because the other person may have just "snapped" and it's either you take him out or he takes you out. But the discussion is about the court system so I'm thinking from a legal point of view.

You do make an interesting point about violent video games. Research has proven for and against, that violent video games can affect human behaviour. As a tech enthusiast and gamer, I really can't stand shooting/fighting games (especially graphic ones), and limit my choices to family friendly titles. Some of my favourites are racing car games. :)

It doesn't sound right that you were arrested for break and enter into your own home, although we've only read your side of the story, to be sure. And how do you "lock your keys in the door"?

And please - take an extra minute to format your posts and fix up the spelling, grammar, and punctuation.

Troy
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#7
farkinid

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Hmm...

Regarding the concept of self defence, the law recognizes self defence as measures to ensure no physical harm or property damage occurs. For example, if your friend was getting hit and you hit the assailant, you CAN plead defence as an excuse. You are also allowed to swing back at a person who commits assault and/or battery at you. However, the test here is whether your defensive actions were reasonable. This, of course is up to the judge to decide.

As for locking yourself out of the house, I have a really funny story about this (if you don't mind me sharing). Living in a tropical country, it can get pretty hot here. So 1 weekend, I stepped out of my house in my boxers and nothing else for a quick cig. After the cig, I tried to go back into the house only to find the door was jammed. The lock broke. Don't ask me how, it just was. So I had to break into my own house. Personally, I don't think I could have been arrested for burglary because there was no intention to steal nor was I trespassing (elements of burglary UK, but I have no idea for B&E in US). But I probably could have been arrested for indecent exposure

farkinid
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#8
Troy

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Regarding the concept of self defence, the law recognizes self defence as measures to ensure no physical harm or property damage occurs. For example, if your friend was getting hit and you hit the assailant, you CAN plead defence as an excuse. You are also allowed to swing back at a person who commits assault and/or battery at you. However, the test here is whether your defensive actions were reasonable. This, of course is up to the judge to decide.

The best bet would be to have a witness, preferably someone you didn't know. Just because you can plead defense as your excuse doesn't mean it's going to hold up in court.

It's definitely a safer option to block and backup if you can. I have been involved in 0 fights in my life, and I've had people try and fight me. I always think to myself, "Can I run faster than this guy?" and take off. I've never had anyone bother to chase after me, which proves it's just not worth it.
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#9
normonster

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Many cases got to court and are won because there is a flaw in our system and someone found it. The decision is quickly reached and an appeal is filed, suspending any pay-off. When it goes through the appeal process and gets overturned the law is re-written so it won’t happen again. The media will report the first trial due to the impact but the appeal won’t find its’ way into print.


You’re only eighteen so give life a chance to unfold. By the time you hit twenty six or seven you’re going to be amazed at some of the changes in thought.

normonster
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#10
CompooterDummy

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The facts about the McDonald's "Hot Coffee" case:

  • McDonalds coffee was not only hot, it was scalding -- capable of almost instantaneous destruction of skin, flesh and muscle.
  • Contrary to many reports, Stella Liebeck of Albuquerque, New Mexico, was not driving the vehicle that went through the drive-through to order her coffee, nor was the car in motion when she attempted remove the lid from her coffee cup - there are many false rumors that this was the case and therefore, she "caused her own problem" by being negligent in handling her "hot coffee". The fact is she was a passenger in her grandson's car and after receiving the coffee, her son pulled over and stopped the car so they could "fix up" their coffee to taste.
  • While removing the lid from her coffee, the entire contents of the cup spilled
    into her lap. She was wearing sweatpants that absorbed the coffee and held it next to her skin.
  • A vascular surgeon determined that Liebeck suffered full thickness burns (i.e. 3rd degree burns) over 6 percent of her body.
  • As a result of the coffee spilling in her lap (not burning her mouth), she was hospitalized for eight days, required skin grafting and debridement treatments.
  • All she originally wanted was $20,000 to cover her medical costs. McDonald's countered with an offer of $900-ish. If I recall correctly, she didn't go looking for a lawyer to wring "big money" out of McDonald's. But, when she was in the hospital, somebody there knew of a similar case against McDonald's that a lawyer they knew had handled and they recommended she talk to him to see if he could get her the money to cover her hospital bills. As it turned out, he just happened to be the lawyer that was "sick and tired" of confronting McDonald's over what he considered "extreme negligence" where their coffee temperatures were concerned. Because he had confront them enough already, he was thoroughly familiar with their attitude, and this time around, more thoroughly equipped to elicit to a room full of jurors just what that attitude was.
  • During the course of the case, McDonalds own documents showed more than 700 claims by people burned by its coffee over a 10 year period. Some of those claims were by people who suffered third-degree burns substantially similar to Liebecks.
  • McDonalds testified that it held its coffee at between 180 and 190 degrees fahrenheit supposedly "to maintain optimum taste".
  • McDonald's admitted that they had not evaluated the safety ramifications at this temperature.
  • Other establishments sell coffee at substantially lower temperatures, and coffee served at home is generally 135 to 140 degrees.
  • Danny Jarrett, a law school student hired by the firm representing McDonald's was charged with the task of running all around Albuquerque, New Mexico restaurants, slipping a thermometer into cups of coffee to see if their temperatures came anywhere near McDonald's. The average temperature of every cup of coffee he tested was 20 degrees lower than McDonald's.
  • McDonalds' quality assurance manager testified that the temperature at which it was poured into styrofoam cups, was not fit for consumption because it would burn the mouth and throat. Even after this admission, the quality assurance manager further stated that McDonalds had no intention of reducing the "holding temperature" of its coffee.
  • At trial, a scholar in thermodynamics applied to human skin burns, testified that liquids, at 180 degrees, will cause a full thickness burn (i.e. 3rd degree burn) to human skin in two to seven seconds.
  • It was further shown that as coffee temperatures decreases toward 155 degrees, the extent of burns relative to that temperature decrease exponentially. In other words, if Liebeck had spilled coffee that's closer to the temperature of coffee served "at home", or even in other restaurants, said coffee would have cooled and she would not have suffered a serious burn.
  • McDonalds, at one point during the case, tried to say that because their consumers buy their coffee intending to consume at a destination, like work, they keep their coffee temperatures scalding so that the coffee is at typical drinking temperature by the time their customers reach their destination. However, it was shown that the companys own research showed that customers intend to consume the coffee immediately while driving. In other words, McDonald's told a bold-faced lie, "under oath".
  • McDonald's admitted that they knew that the vast majority of their customers would be totally unaware that the temperatures at which they held their coffee could cause 3rd degree burns and still chose not to place a warning to that effect on their coffee cups. They also admitted that the tiny bit of writing "tucked away" on their cups was intended to be a reminder that coffee, in general, could be hot. It was not intended to, nor did it, communicate the possibility that THEIR COFFEE could cause 3rd degree burns.
  • McDonald's had settled out of court, more than once, and on occassion for six figures, over this same issue before this case was ever brought.
  • The jury awarded Liebeck $200,000 in compensatory damages with a $40,000 reduction because they considered Liebeck to be 20% responsible in the incident. I seem to recall reading somewhere that the vast majority of this amount went to pay her doctors and lawyers. Liebeck was also initially awared $2.7 million in punitive damages (2 days worth of McDonald's coffee sales) but since an investigation of the Albuquerque McDonald's where all of this happened showed that, since the verdict, McDonald's had finally "learned it's lesson" and dropped the temperature of it's coffee to an average 158 degrees fahrenheit, the trial court reduced this to $480,000. That amount represents the amount usually respected by most "punitive damage" laws, i.e. 3x whatever compensatory damages were.
  • The judge called McDonalds' conduct where this issue was concerned "reckless, callous and willful".
In the end, despite "court room settlements" Liebeck and McDonald's entered into a secret settlement the terms of which have never been revealed to the public.
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#11
PedroDaGR8

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WHat Compooter Dummy is saying jives with the details I got from a friend of mine in law school.
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#12
hfcg

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I would suggest that you read post # 13 here http://www.geekstogo...rk-t239855.html
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#13
CompooterDummy

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I would suggest that you read post # 13 here http://www.geekstogo...rk-t239855.html


Well, if the field of law were "euler circled" I could certainly see where at least one circle would overlap the field of politics. I'm sure the mods here will let us know if we're stepping over. Sorry if I did. The point of my post wasn't so much to discuss politics but to point out that "things aren't always as they seem."
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#14
hfcg

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My point was to keep the discussion from becoming questionable.
If the discussion turned to "should people be allowed to sue" or, "are cops good or bad" the discussion would be out of line.
I directed you to a post that reminds us that there are lines not to be crossed.
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#15
CompooterDummy

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Oops! Got retarded and posted nearly the same thing twice. Sorry.

Edited by CompooterDummy, 01 June 2009 - 10:31 AM.

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