An Ohio woman who claimed she had lost her $162-million winning lottery ticket retracted a lawsuit Thursday and admitted she had lied. She had filed the lawsuit in order to stop the actual winner from getting the money so she could pocket the record sum herself.
There have been many outrageous lawsuits but most people in the past at least bothered to think their story through and offered evidence or witnesses to back up their claim. In this case, however, the claim was not only untrue, but the asinine nature of it all should raise the question wheter lawsuits like this should be punishable by law.
According to CNN the woman admitted, “I did buy a ticket, and I lost it. I wanted to win so bad for my kids, my family.” While it may very well be that she and her family could have needed the money, it’s not an excuse for anybody to file such a far-fetched lawsuit without any shred of evidence to back up their claim.
Preposterous lawsuits like this are hardly an exception today. Recently the parents of a toddler sued the city of Stamford, Conn. because their child had run into a railing at a playground and cut his head. The toddler had been modeling and due to the accident, which occurred while the parents were present, he was not able to “work in his job” until the wound healed. “This accident was preventable had the railings and safety measures been correct at this park,” the parents said in court. Of course it would have also been preventable if the parents had paid attention to what their child was doing, but even then accidents like these happen. This did not stop the parents from suing the city for payment of “lost wage amount due to his inability to audition or take modeling or commercial jobs while his head heals.”
Such lawsuits simply have to stop.
It is, after all, lawsuits like these that have eroded the trust American citizens have in the legal system. Heavily publicized trials like O.J. Simpson’s of 1990s’ fame and the arrival of Court TV did their fair share of damage, but if everybody was to sue for damages when doing something stupid and injuring themselves or to make a quick buck, we might as well close the courts and hold circuses instead.