Stella Awards

Starting off a new section dedicated to the rare funny email amongst all the forwards that fill our boxes every day… the best go here. Think your personal SPAM -er- “funny forwards” stand up? Send me some — well, let’s start at just one. Thanks.

The “Stella Awards” are for the most (successful) frivolous lawsuits in the US. They are named after 81 year-old Stella Liebeck who spilled coffee on herself and successfully sued McDonald’s. Though to be fair… i have been informed by many attorney’s that their was much at work against McDonald’s in this particular case from a legal point of view… most of which are facts of the case that aren’t widely known. At any rate, I won’t bore you with the details but rest assured that you can both annoy any lawyers you know and help them maintain their feelings of over-selfimportance by siting Stella’s case in a discussion of frivolous lawsuits and out-of-control jury awards for compensations for damages.

But i digress. My favorites are listed below. The full email is stored for posterity under the link. Enjoy.

It’s time once again to review the winners of the annual “Stella Awards.” (The Stella’s are named after 81 year-old Stella Liebeck who spilled coffee on herself and successfully sued McDonald’s. That case inspired the Stella awards for the most frivolous successful lawsuits in the United States.) Here are this year’s winners:?5th Place (tie): Kathleen Robertson of Austin, Texas, was awarded $780,000 by a jury of her peers after breaking her ankle tripping over a toddler who was running inside a furniture store. The owners of the store were understandably surprised at the verdict, considering the misbehaving little toddler was Ms. Robertson’s son….

1st Place: This year’s run away winner was Mrs. Merv Grazinski of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. Mrs. Grazinski purchased a brand new 32-foot Winnebago motor home. On her first trip home, (from an OU football game), having driven onto the freeway, she set the cruise control at 70 mph and calmly left the drivers seat to go into the back & make herself a sandwich. Not surprisingly, the RV left the freeway, crashed and overturned. Mrs. Grazinski sued Winnebago for not advising her in the owner’s manual that she couldn’t actually do this. The jury awarded her $1,750,000 plus a new motor home. The company actually changed their manuals on the basis of this suit, just in case there were any other complete morons around.

Stella AwardsThanks Elizabeth

UPDATE: Apparently this “Stella” awards email is a fake. This list has been circulating for at least two years now and used to include this one as well:

And just so you know that cooler heads do occasionally prevail: Kenmore Inc., the makers of Dorothy Johnson’s microwave, were found not liable for the death of Mrs. Johnson’s poodle after she gave it a bath and attempted to dry it by putting the poor creature in her microwave for, “just a few minutes, on low,” The case was quickly dismissed. — Oh well, they are still funny even if it’s a total farce, so we’ll keep them here for now. :D Thanks Travis