If Frivolous Lawsuits Are Bad, What About Frivolous Defenses?

We are always hearing about these evil, un-American frivolous lawsuits that threaten the very fabric of our society. OK, I get it. I dislike frivolous lawsuits as much as anybody. They devalue the claims of the truly injured, diminish the reputation of the plaintiff’s bar, and waste time and money.

But what about meritless defenses that are made against non-frivolous lawsuits? Two great examples today.

First, Eric Turkewitz writes about a New York defense attorney making the argument that pain is not a “personal injury.” Riiiiiight.

Next, Walter Olson at Overlawyered blogs about attorneys defending a hotel against a negligent security case. The plaintiff alleged that the hotel’s negligent security led to her violent rape. The geniuses defending the case withdrew the defenses that the woman was contributorily negligent, careless, and that she failed to mitigate her damages. Good call guys. Blaming the victim may not be the best defense strategy in a rape case. Last time I checked, women were 50% of the population, and most likely the jury pool. As an aside, I like Walter’s blog because he calls out stupidity where he perceives it, on both sides.

So, tort reformers, take note. Beware of frivolous defenses that do nothing but burden the judicial system, cost everyone money, and set up unfair roadblocks to justice for innocent victims.