Lawyers can find themselves working cases of all shapes and sizes. Some cases are boring, some clients are better than others… such is life.
There are some cases, however, that will stick out in the minds of these lawyers forever, due to the sheer absurdity of the situation being presented to them. Here, lawyers on Reddit share the stupidest case that theyve been asked to take on.
His excuse was because “aliens” had given him the design for it.
My father told him that if the aliens originally designed then they were the ones that had to patent it, not him.
When I asked him if Stu had a last name, he said no. When I asked him if he knew any Stu, he said no. When I asked him what proof he had that Stu was robbing him, he showed me all of his pay stubs.
There were clear, monthly deductions by “SCU”. As soon as I saw it, I knew. I asked “Do you have children?” He said yes.
I then told him “Your Stu is the SCU – the Support Collection Unit. They take money out of your check to pay for your child.”
He left the office insisting that we needed to find Stu.
I had a case a few months ago where a man was charged with shoplifting. Turned out he was 70 years old, had absolutely no criminal record, and had shoplifted a SANDWICH which he ate politely in the store. He honestly thought he had paid for it.
I was so angry that he was ever charged in the first place. When I saw him in court, he was absolutely terrified. I withdrew the charges and wished him well. I have no idea how it progressed that far.
He was trying to rob the place.
I say help because they just give you small cases to do by yourself. I had a guy accused of shoplifting a yellow FUBU shirt. Guess what he wore to the trial? A YELLOW FUBU SHIRT. I asked the prosecutor to re-offer the plea deal, she did, and I convinced the guy to take community service and probation (if I remember correctly). Our public defender system is tragically overworked and underfunded.
Owner of the factory said it was because the guy was smoking crack on his lunch break.
Turns out he was smoking crack on his lunch break but so were a few of his white co-workers and they were not fired. The owner agreed to pay the guy six months of back pay and give him a neutral reference.
You wouldn’t believe how many people take a video inventory of their house only to have it “mysteriously” burn down the next day. You really can’t fix stupid.
I arrived at reception to find a clearly disturbed woman with a small wheeled suitcase. I took her to a conference room to discuss, making sure I kept a good line of sight to reception. She put the suitcase on the table and opened it to reveal a stack of thousands of handwritten pages and one half of a pair of scissors. She explained that she had written a manuscript about how the city council gave her schizophrenia and hepatitis, aliens stole her pets and that it was all part of a bigger conspiracy involving the army and the Illuminati. She was worried that our local newspaper was going to steal her thoughts and publish her manuscript without her consent, and wanted to register the copyright in her manuscript. (Continued on the next page…)
(Continued)… We then had a perfectly rational and reasonable discussion about copyright laws. I explained that in our jurisdiction she didn’t need to register it and that she had rights as an author automatically on creation of the work. I told her the most useful thing she could do is ensure she had evidence of her creative work, and that she should send a digital copy to herself and a friend, and also leave a copy with a friend. That way if it was published without her consent she could prove it was her work. We spoke for nearly an hour, she thanked me and then left. She got free legal advice, and I didn’t get stabbed with a scissor. I hope she found the help she needs.
Her lawyer wouldn’t touch it.
He told me that when people tried to sue them for small amounts due to some game being bad, they would just pay whatever the person wanted, it was cheaper than dealing with the country terrible justice system.
Except one day a guy sued them because a game was bad, he was a law student, self representing, and tried to throw the book at the company.
They decided to make a exception for this guy, they instead ‘threw the book back’ at him, the lawsuit kept escalating until both sides wasted lots of time and money…
Then as final stroke, they offered to settle in front of a judge. There in front of the judge… they put the price of the game on the table in cash, and told the guy to just take it and stop bothering them.
The judge thought it was very fair, and told the guy that if he refused that settlement he would be fined.
Guy was very unhappy… he spent like $5000 USD on bureaucracy and airplane fares to get $60 USD.
They were using voodoo on her. Fortunately, she had psychic powers and thus knew what they were doing. I respectfully declined.
Thankfully a secretary was able to screen the call. She asked if the package said it had strawberries, and the response was, “No, but I thought it would have.”
I don’t know how these people manage to make it through life.
Arresting officer never actually opened the tin foil bundle involved and check that it was, in fact, not a burrito.
She had tripped over her own cat. She told me that she wanted to sue her local authority as her home was owned by the council and she was not allowed to keep pets as part of her lease. She claimed that when the house was inspected she was not told to get rid of the cat. It was therefore the council’s fault that she fell down the stairs.
We didn’t take the case on.
That’s right. They aren’t married and common law doesn’t apply in WA state. They lived together for 5 years. She has a job. She isn’t on the mortgage. And she left him a few months ago. There are no kids involved. They were never engaged.
In the “divorce” she wants him to leave his house and she wants to move back in. She wants him to pay her 2800 a month for some reason. I referred him to my divorce attorney and now that attorney is probably going to represent him.. She has already tried to get a restraining order against him that was dismissed.
He had written a poem, in Yoruba, about the accident. He refused to tell me anything about his case until he’s read the whole thing, in Yoruba.
Among other problems, I can’t speak any Yoruba. As in, not one word. As in, that day was the first time I had ever heard of the Yoruba language. I’m not even from a part of the world where I might readily be mistaken for someone who speaks Yoruba. It’s a West African language, and I am really, really obviously not from a West African background.
I try to explain this to the guy who becomes very agitated and insists that he must read out his poem in Yoruba. I give up and tell him to get on with it so we can talk about his claim. He does. It takes him nearly 20 minutes to finish.
Anyway, after he’s done, he finishes and sits back with a big smile and says that he’s certain I’ll take his case on now. I begin to ask him some questions about his case, but he refuses to answer. He says that this poem (in Yoruba) is everything I need to know about his case.
Basically, I tell him to leave and stop wasting my time. He does, but not before standing around outside my office for an hour or so, reading out his poem, to no-one in particular, over and over again.
Therefore he discovered the volcano and he owned the volcano and that the Melbourne city council and indeed the Victorian government should pay him rent to live on top of his underground volcano.
No no I did not take on the case.
I asked for details, and he just started screaming in my face asking if I was going to take his money or not. I decided then that I wasn’t taking him on as a client, but I wanted to know what was going on. I convinced him to tell me what happened.
Turns out he bought a computer back in the 1990s. It had just recently died. But not because it was old and just stopped working. It was slow, so he picked it up, and threw it out a two story window. And then he wanted to sue the manufacturer for breaking warranty.
After we won he told me he still owns it. The dude has the thing in his backyard because he was so lazy (his office was nearby).
Forced him to deliver it back at night…geez…still offended that he lied to me me the whole time.
This was a grown up man who held a real job and functioned in society.
A guy in his late 50’s/early 60’s comes into the lobby area of my office and starts a commotion that freaks out the receptionist. I was the closest attorney to the lobby so I go out and talk to the guy. He was clearly mentally disturbed and presented the following story: someone had implanted a device in his brain that was controlling his behavior.
He believed it was being controlled by Baskin Robbins and a former mayor of Detroit. He believed they were forcing him to do random things like going to bars to drink, taking the wrong turn when driving, forcing him to retire from his job, and a lot of very other intricate things. After asking him if he had seen any doctors regarding the “implant” he got really upset and said that he thought the doctors were in on it as well. After telling him I couldn’t help him and suggesting that he find some new doctors, he asked me if I knew any lawyers who specialized in his kind of case.
I often wonder if the lawyer I referred him to was able to help him.
He once spent an entire year trying to help deny insurance benefits for a painter who had stepped off his ladder onto a cat, fallen down the stairs and become paralyzed. The insurance company was arguing that a cat was a commonly expected occupational hazard for a painter and that he was negligent in not checking for cats before stepping down. A whole year of his life.
Over whether a cat is a known occupational hazard of house painting.
The ex-gf sued him for custody of their two cats AND $500,000 for something like the lost value of the cats because she claimed they were service animals. Hint: they were not at all service animals.
He assured us that as soon as the jury saw his dick, they’d side with him.
No, we didn’t take it.