9.07.2008

Rule 11 Watch

Rule 11 is the Federal Rule of Civil Procedure that allows the lawyers for one party to call shenanigans on the lawyers for the other. There are similar rules in virtually all states. Most lawyers never see a Rule 11 motion or anything like it. To see one, you need a case that isn't merely weak. Rather, it must fail the "smile test" - If a reasonable person couldn't get up in court and deliver the argument with a straight face, the argument enters the red zone. With that intro:

Man sues NY Bar because he was thrown off its mechanical bull. He claims they let him ride while drunk, that the bull was "a danger", and that they left him on too long. The resulting claim: assault and battery.

Something here is clearly bull. Forget the assumption of the risk on the client's part; let's focus on an attorney that spends too much time watching T.V. "Assault and Battery" is a T.V. cliche that has a distinct meaning in the law. Assault is the threat of imminent harm. Battery is the physical harm itself. When a lawyer resorts to these sound bites, it makes him look, at best, cavalier and, at worst, sanctionable.

1 comment:

thegameiam said...

I hereby find the plaintiff guilty of being a dumbass.

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