Victoria’s Secret Just the Latest in a Tradition of Dumb Consumer Lawsuits


Proud to be an American? There’s reason. We have a beautiful country filled with natural and man-made wonders. We’re home to some of the world’s most talented business innovators. And we, the people, reserve the right to sue anyone we want for anything we want.

You’re next, Victoria’s Secret.
Because there’s nothing like an unruly thong to provoke a latent lawsuit. How the woman damaged her eye with her underwear is beyond me. But does she really need Vic’s to reimburse her for it? According to ABC News,

The thong, a Victoria’s Secret Sexy Little Thing low-rise v-string, had a heart-shaped pendant attached to the fabric with a metal fastener, according to the lawsuit. When Patterson was changing after work, the metal piece snapped, creating a “slingshot effect,” and either the pendant or the metal piece “cut her eye…”

Here are 15 more of the nation’s dumbest corporate lawsuits. Just in case you needed reminding:

15. A Florida woman sued a guide-dog school because a blind man being guided by one of the dogs stepped on her foot.

14. A man sued McDonald’s for “failing to warn customers about the dangers of eating and driving.” The impetus? A man who’d spilled a milkshake on his lap at the drive-thru collided with the defendant’s car.

13. An Idaho college student decided to moon his friends, and fell out the window as a result. So he sued the college for not providing enough warning signs in upper-story windows.

12. A dry cleaner lost Roy Pearson’s pants, causing him great mental suffering. He alluded to the dry cleaner’s “satisfaction guarantee” as an excuse to sue the company for $67 million.

11. A man from Montana sued Viacom for plagiarizing his name. The man’s legal name is Jack Ass, and Jack Ass sued because the TV show Jackass infringed on the copyright and trademark of his name. And “defamed his good character.” (The man, nee Bob Craft, changed his name to Jack Ass in 1997 in order to “raise awareness about drunken driving.”)

10. A convenience store worker in West Virginia injured her back while opening a jar of pickles. The store awarded her $2,699,000 in punitive damages, $130,066 in compensation and another $170,000 for her emotional distress.

9. A couple from Columbia, SC lost their son to a killer whale. He was found dead and naked on the back of an orca whale at SeaWorld Orlando. He had drowned after sneaking into the whale tank and going for a swim with the killer whale. The couple sued SeaWorld Orlando, “alleging the dangerous orca was portrayed as a huggable stuffed toy. Attorney Patricia Sigman said SeaWorld is legally liable because it portrayed the killer whale as human loving.”

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8. A pair of Chicago attorneys filed a class action suit against Penthouse magazine, because they failed to “see tennis sensation Anna Kournikova without her racket and tennis outfit.” The damages? $8.99 each, or the price of the magazine.

7. Consumer Meredith Berkman filed a class-action suit against Robert’s Foods, who make a snack called Pirate’s Booty, for $50 million. Four months prior, Robert’s had recalled its product because food labels understated calories by 27 and fat by 6 grams. Berkman’s suit claimed “emotional distress” and “weight gain…mental anguish, outrage and indignation…The complaint claims to represent all consumers who ruined their diets and had to spend more time at the gym because they ate mislabeled Pirate’s Booty.”

6. In 1995, passengers on an LA-New York American Airlines flight experienced extreme turbulence for 20 seconds. Passengers sued the airline for the “psychological impact of the twenty eight seconds of terror.” Their reward? $2 million.

5. Nita Bird, a woman having outpatient surgery, had something go wrong during surgery. Surgeons rushed her down the hallway into another room in order to save her life. Her two daughters saw their mother being rushed down the hallway, appearing to be in extremely poor physical condition. The two daughters sued the doctors and the hospital for causing them emotional distress. They shouldn’t have had to see Mom like that, and it was the hospital’s fault. That case was lost–in the California Supreme Court.

4. Bennie Casson had a stripper slam him on the head and neck with her two 40-pound breasts, contusing and bruising his neck. He sued the strip club for $200,000 for the mental anguish, indignity, and emotional distress he experienced after the incident.

3. Employees at the Las Vegas Hilton and Mandalay Bay Hotel kept handing a drunk man money to gamble with. He had a hard night, losing more than $1 million. So he sued the two hotels for supposedly knowing he was “drunk as a skunk” and continuing to give him gambling money anyway.

2. A British dollmaker with dark tastes decided to turn Barbie into a “Dungeon Doll” in rubber bondage dress and a helmet. Mattel sued the dollmaker for copyright infringement. The judge wrote them off, claiming the Dungeon Doll poses no threat to regular Barbie sales.

1. Yup, here it is again. The infamous 1992 McDonald’s coffee case. Stella Liebeck spilled McDonald’s coffee on her lap in the drive-thru, scalding her genitals, buttocks, and inner thigh. She received more than $2.7 million in damages. (To her credit, she wasn’t the first one to have trouble with Micky D’s scalding coffee.)

(Source: Stupid Lawsuit Collection)

  • How many of these were laughed out of court immediately, and how many are apocryphal? These stories, true or not, serve the purposes of corporate and insurance interests by heaping scorn on the entire process. Note that the one about the guy trimming his hedge with the lawnmower is no longer used, thanks to I hate trivial lawsuits, but we need to preserve our wonderful right to sue the hell out of big, powerful entities.

  • MJK

    You do know that Liebeck had 3rd degree burns — the skin melted off of her body and fused with the pants she was wearing. also, she had to get skin grafts, two years of treatments and physical therapy and over a week of hospital stay right after the accident. 200 degree coffee is too hot. Besides, it got toned down to less than $600,000, much higher than the $20,000 she originally wanted.

  • Cen Takada

    I have no problems suing the hell out of big, powerful entities, but what kind of stupid retarded reasons people need to find in order to sue someone?

    This country’s main problem is that nobody wants to take responsibility for their actions, whether a company or a consumer…

  • A house next to our office feeds stray cats which them craps on our lawn which we pay to maintain. They (the stray cats) also walk all ovr the cars in the lot with their mus paws and sharp nails and tarnish the paint job.

    They use the same “cheap” brand to feed the strays (we saw it on their property) so we will sue the cat food company for creating a food that keeps the strays alive and addicted to the area.