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Haha, Lawyer Loses Dry Cleaner Claim!

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by Artisan Fan, Jun 25, 2007.

  1. oldseed

    oldseed Senior member

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    ----
    Originally Posted by TCN
    I was so angry, I wanted to keep the bills churning (I represented myself) and get the full payment plus penalties (there was no way they'd win btw), but ultimately agreed to settle because I was friends with the lawyer they hired to represent them. I regret not making those bastards pay more frankly.

    ----
    I hate to say it but this is exactly where my cynicism comes from. Because you are a lawyer and "know the language/system" you feel it is your right to bury those "jerks/bastards" in legal fees...over a blanket and some shirts that were mistakenly dropped off in a place where Purple Heart picked them up.

    I'm not getting into semantics here but it sounded like an honest mistake. It sounds like they did not want to make you whole. If you were not a lawyer it probably would not have been worth it to file a court case (and this is part of my point). But because you are a lawyer you are able to not only recoup your losses but also punish the cleaners (who made an honest mistake) by "making those bastards pay".

    It's that kind of dickhead attitude that gives lawyers and the whole system a bad rep IMO.


    you are exactly right. "keeping the bills churning" for the other side is not only a dickhead thing to do, in some law societies it is unethical behaviour and grounds for punishment in the way of disbarment.
     
  2. stickonatree

    stickonatree Senior member

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  3. TCN

    TCN Senior member

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    Sorry, this is just stupid. You arranged to have multiple parcels of clothing, some worthless as garbage to you, some priceless as mother's pearls, outside on your porch on the same day with different people both picking up and dropping off, I presume within hours of each other. That was at your request? And you wanna blame everyone else. wow....[​IMG]


    I think you missed that the arrangement was to have them dropped off in back (to avoid this type of thing), and it was printed on my cleaning tickets, and I paid a premium for this service. No clothes are priceless, but why should I pay for someone else's screw up?
     
  4. TCN

    TCN Senior member

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    Or maybe those that don't see this are still working in the research department.



    That's not what I was saying. I was saying that people should not be punished for making an honest mistake...they should only be held accountable. My other point was that those who sue in order to punish (like you), or to receive more than they are actually entitled, are a big part of the problem.



    Let me put this as simply as I can, I did not sue to punish, I sued to recover about 50% of the money I was out of pocket on in having to replace a bunch of shirts.

    In this case, I was primarily a Plaintiff, NOT a lawyer. I was angry with the attitude of the Defendant (something that MANY Plaintiffs . . . not their counsel) experience. I would like to think that because I am a lawyer, I stopped short of "exacting revenge" (on a large 10+ location cleaners by the way) and just accepted a somewhat fair settlement.

    About a week later, an associate of the firm I was with at the time dropped off a few sets of linen sheets at this same dry cleaner, and the cleaner lost the sheets and refused to compensate her. She procrastinated, never filed suit, and then moved out of town. Do you think she should have?
     
  5. TCN

    TCN Senior member

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    Calling this guy a judge is quite generous IMO.

    Good point, actually he wasn't a full-on judge, he was an administrative law judge.

    This guy took this thing way too far, which I'm sure has someone somewhere questioning his daily logic and judgment.
     
  6. G79

    G79 Senior member

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    Good point, actually he wasn't a full-on judge, he was an administrative law judge.

    This guy took this thing way too far, which I'm sure has someone somewhere questioning his daily logic and judgment.


    Id love to see what hed do to a case when he has to deicde on such a case
     
  7. amerikajinda

    amerikajinda Senior member

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    Id love to see what hed do to a case when he has to deicde on such a case

    Well, this whole situation may very well cost him his job... his two-year term as a beginning administrative law judge ended in April, and the Mayor of D.C. asked the panel considering his appointment to a full, ten-year term to hold off any decision (ostensibly to see how this suit suit played out) and now his current boss no longer supports his reappointment... so it looks like he stands to lose millions (not the cleaners)... karma is a beeyatch.

    [​IMG]
     
  8. Teacher

    Teacher Senior member

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    karma is a beeyatch.

    [​IMG]


    Possibly the best post on the thread!
     
  9. imageWIS

    imageWIS Senior member

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    Good point, actually he wasn't a full-on judge, he was an administrative law judge.

    This guy took this thing way too far, which I'm sure has someone somewhere questioning his daily logic and judgment.


    They should change the term to: Administrative Law Arbitrator

    Jon.
     
  10. lawyerdad

    lawyerdad Senior member

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    I still don't understand why they spent so much on their defense when the amount in controversy was obviously very low.

    I was wondering that myself. I could be totally wrong -- nothing new there -- but that's what made me wonder if their lawyers are working on some sort of pro bono basis with maybe a contingency kicker in the event of any recovery against Judge Pissypants. Pro bono cases often are handled a lot less efficiently than paying cases because the client isn't making cost/benefit trade-offs every step of the way. Also, I would imagine you've found, as I have, that litigating against pro pers and crazy people can be more difficult and time-consuming than litigating against a smart, competent, responsible adversary.
     
  11. odoreater

    odoreater Senior member

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    I was wondering that myself. I could be totally wrong -- nothing new there -- but that's what made me wonder if their lawyers are working on some sort of pro bono basis with maybe a contingency kicker in the event of any recovery against Judge Pissypants. Pro bono cases often are handled a lot less efficiently than paying cases because the client isn't making cost/benefit trade-offs every step of the way. Also, I would imagine you've found, as I have, that litigating against pro pers and crazy people can be more difficult and time-consuming than litigating against a smart, competent, responsible adversary.

    Hmm, actually it would make sense if their lawyers did it pro bono and put a lot of resources and effort into it with the knowledge that there is a good possibility that they may some day recover counsel fees under a frivilous litigation statute (and, to my knowlege, most states allow pro bono counsel to be compensated if they recover money for their client).
     
  12. lawyerdad

    lawyerdad Senior member

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    Id love to see what hed do to a case when he has to deicde on such a case

    He won't get a case like this. As odoreater and TCN have noted, he's what is called an "Administrative Law Judge". With no offense intended to the sane and responsible people who do that job, he's not really a "judge" in the sense most of us understand the term. He's basically a bureaucratic official who has some authority to make decisions in a very narrowly defined area.
     
  13. lawyerdad

    lawyerdad Senior member

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    (and, to my knowlege, most states allow pro bono counsel to be compensated if they recover money for their client).

    To my knowledge, that is correct. Several public interest advocacy groups I have worked with use similar arrangements. For example, they will charge the clients nothing, but if there is an award of attorneys' fees they retain those, and sometimes they will take a small contingency interest in a potential recovery above a certain threshhold (i.e., making sure the clients get something approaching a "full recovery" first, but taking a small interest in any "windfall" that may be realized through a punitive damage award or the like).
     
  14. Teacher

    Teacher Senior member

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    Geez, I almost feel ready to take the bar exam!
     
  15. TCN

    TCN Senior member

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    Hmm, actually it would make sense if their lawyers did it pro bono and put a lot of resources and effort into it with the knowledge that there is a good possibility that they may some day recover counsel fees under a frivilous litigation statute (and, to my knowlege, most states allow pro bono counsel to be compensated if they recover money for their client).

    This is indeed a strange one. I wonder how a dry cleaning business (with two locations I think?) would qualify for free legal aid from some organization, but assuming they did, it wouldn't surprise me if they were doing exactly what you suggest above. I mean how much discovery is needed in a missing pants case? I'm surprised the ALJ didn't get sanctioned earlier if he was showing up every week for a different motion as the reports suggest.

    The dry cleaners' attorneys also set up a website earlier for people to donate to the business's defense costs. I would have thought that their commercial insurance businessowner's policy would have picked this up, but apparently not.
     
  16. lawyerdad

    lawyerdad Senior member

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    This is indeed a strange one. I wonder how a dry cleaning business (with two locations I think?) would qualify for free legal aid from some organization, but assuming they did, it wouldn't surprise me if they were doing exactly what you suggest above. I mean how much discovery is needed in a missing pants case? I'm surprised the ALJ didn't get sanctioned earlier if he was showing up every week for a different motion as the reports suggest.

    The dry cleaners' attorneys also set up a website earlier for people to donate to the business's defense costs. I would have thought that their commercial insurance businessowner's policy would have picked this up, but apparently not.


    I assume many small business can't afford -- or at least gamble that they don't need standard CGL coverage. Also, it's possible that if they have a policy, coverage might not extend to fraud-type claims.
     
  17. SoCal2NYC

    SoCal2NYC Senior member

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    40 acres and a mule.
     
  18. imageWIS

    imageWIS Senior member

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    40 acres and a mule.

    And a pair of matching Hickey-Freeman pants from a suit bought at Nordstrom's.

    Jon.
     
  19. SoCal2NYC

    SoCal2NYC Senior member

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    How much do judges make?

    Probably a K&G discounted suit whose ORIGINAL retail was $1,000.
     
  20. lawyerdad

    lawyerdad Senior member

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    How much do judges make?

    Probably a K&G discounted suit whose ORIGINAL retail was $1,000.


    I think ALJ's are on the federal GS scale, and I think they make, depending on a variety of factors, somewhere in the $90,000 - $150,000 range.
     

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