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 Post subject: So, a four year old is being sued.
PostPosted: Fri Oct 29, 2010 6:43 pm 
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A little girl named Juliet was racing a friend on her bike and accidentally ran into an old woman. The woman broke her hip, requiring surgery, and later died of unrelated causes.

Story here: http://www.nytimes.com/2010/10/29/nyreg ... terstitial

It seems fairly obvious to me that this was a terrible accident that was not a result of "negligence." She's a little girl being accused of a very adult crime. I'm sure that they'd sue the parents if they could, but they know that they have a smaller chance of being successful, so they're going to launch a lawsuit on a child. Because they can. Money-grubbing crassholes.

World's most idiotic quote:
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A parent’s presence alone does not give a reasonable child carte blanche to engage in risky behavior such as running across a street,” the judge wrote. He added that any “reasonably prudent child,” who presumably has been told to look both ways before crossing a street, should know that dashing out without looking is dangerous, with or without a parent there.

Yeah, because four-year-olds are totally rational and prudent.

Edited to add "of unrelated causes"

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Last edited by Jigglypuff on Fri Oct 29, 2010 6:58 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: So, a four year old is being sued.
PostPosted: Fri Oct 29, 2010 6:45 pm 
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What are they planning to take from a four year old, exactly? Her piggy bank?

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 Post subject: Re: So, a four year old is being sued.
PostPosted: Fri Oct 29, 2010 6:47 pm 
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 Post subject: Re: So, a four year old is being sued.
PostPosted: Fri Oct 29, 2010 6:50 pm 
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According to the article the woman had surgery and died 3 months later of unrelated causes.

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 Post subject: Re: So, a four year old is being sued.
PostPosted: Fri Oct 29, 2010 6:53 pm 
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I'd like to see them explain the concept of a law suit to a four year old. I teach four year olds. They barely understand the justice of a time out chair. By the way, I have yet to meet a "reasonably prudent child" that young.

Honestly, I don't hate humanity, but stories like this make me sympathetic toward those who do.

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 Post subject: Re: So, a four year old is being sued.
PostPosted: Fri Oct 29, 2010 6:54 pm 
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The lawsuit is against the children AND the parents.

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 Post subject: Re: So, a four year old is being sued.
PostPosted: Fri Oct 29, 2010 7:00 pm 
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Fee wrote:
The lawsuit is against the children AND the parents.

You're right. Apparently I don't know how to read.

It's still shitty, though.

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 Post subject: Re: So, a four year old is being sued.
PostPosted: Fri Oct 29, 2010 7:02 pm 
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Is it? An 87 year old woman fell, had to have surgery, and died through no fault of her own. I think it's reasonable for the other side to ask for damages. Someone has to pay those costs.

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 Post subject: Re: So, a four year old is being sued.
PostPosted: Fri Oct 29, 2010 7:19 pm 
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Fee wrote:
Is it? An 87 year old woman fell, had to have surgery, and died through no fault of her own. I think it's reasonable for the other side to ask for damages. Someone has to pay those costs.


She died of causes unrelated to breaking her hip/surgery. Yes, it was through no fault of her own that her hip was broken, but it wasn't the child's fault, either. The child wouldn't have had the cognitive ability to put the action/consequence together.

I could understand faulting their mothers for not being alongside them, instead of watching them from the porch (where they wouldn't have been able to stop an accident). But it's still ridiculous that the 4 year-old is even listed in this lawsuit.

On a larger scale, this is yet another argument for universal health care: fewer lawsuits because someone "has to pay the cost" of surgery, etc.

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 Post subject: Re: So, a four year old is being sued.
PostPosted: Fri Oct 29, 2010 7:29 pm 
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I don't think you can technically/legally charge a 4-year-old with a crime. So, next best thing is to sue for damages, I guess?


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 Post subject: Re: So, a four year old is being sued.
PostPosted: Fri Oct 29, 2010 7:48 pm 
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amandabear wrote:
What are they planning to take from a four year old, exactly? Her piggy bank?

Well, her license to drive a Big Wheel is toast, just for starters!

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 Post subject: Re: So, a four year old is being sued.
PostPosted: Fri Oct 29, 2010 8:19 pm 
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I believe this happened in midtown manhattan-ish, upper east side-ish. There would be no porch, they'd probably just be kids riding on the sidewalk while the mothers walked behind. Or were possibly sitting on a bench or something.
Whatever. I'm going to sure every forking person who has ever caused me any bit of harm in some way so I can have some money too. Logic not needed.

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 Post subject: Re: So, a four year old is being sued.
PostPosted: Fri Oct 29, 2010 8:21 pm 
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Also, I saw nothing that mentioned in the article whether the woman had health insurance. And it seems a bit fishy that the lawsuit was brought up after the woman died from unrelated causes three months later by her estate.

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 Post subject: Re: So, a four year old is being sued.
PostPosted: Fri Oct 29, 2010 8:24 pm 
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This would be funny if it weren't real, but it is, so it's just horrifying.


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 Post subject: Re: So, a four year old is being sued.
PostPosted: Fri Oct 29, 2010 10:13 pm 
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Since the death was of unrelated causes the lawsuit itself makes no sense. What if this woman would have died three months later regardless of the accident? It seems more likely that the estate of this woman is attempting to recover money lost by any means necessary.

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 Post subject: Re: So, a four year old is being sued.
PostPosted: Sat Oct 30, 2010 12:37 am 
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Adah wrote:
This would be funny if it weren't real, but it is, so it's just horrifying.


this. =[

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 Post subject: Re: So, a four year old is being sued.
PostPosted: Sat Oct 30, 2010 12:59 am 
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Fee wrote:
Is it? An 87 year old woman fell, had to have surgery, and died through no fault of her own. I think it's reasonable for the other side to ask for damages. Someone has to pay those costs.


It's late, so maybe my exquisitely calibrated sarcasm detector is on the blink, but it's just not the case that for every bad thing that happens, someone is legally or ethically at fault.

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 Post subject: Re: So, a four year old is being sued.
PostPosted: Sat Oct 30, 2010 5:05 am 
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FootFace wrote:
Fee wrote:
Is it? An 87 year old woman fell, had to have surgery, and died through no fault of her own. I think it's reasonable for the other side to ask for damages. Someone has to pay those costs.


It's late, so maybe my exquisitely calibrated sarcasm detector is on the blink, but it's just not the case that for every bad thing that happens, someone is legally or ethically at fault.


No, but in this case the parents were reckless with the children's activity. Any parent with the minimum of wit could foresee that children racing bikes on the footpath could put pedestrians (and the children!) at risk of injury. A broken hip would have left that old lady in a lot of pain and reduced her mobility for the last few months of her life. I don't think we get to brush that of because children were involved.

I don't like that the children are being named in the suit, I've no idea if that's some sort of lawyer game plan, in case the suit against the parents falls though. It's a shitty situation for the kids but that doesn't mean no one was at fault.


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 Post subject: Re: So, a four year old is being sued.
PostPosted: Sat Oct 30, 2010 6:05 am 
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Someone being at fault does not mean someone needs to be sued. I am tired of Americans thinking anything bad that happens warrants a lawsuit. There are kids and people all over the sidewalks of NYC. You could get knocked down at any time.

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 Post subject: Re: So, a four year old is being sued.
PostPosted: Sat Oct 30, 2010 6:22 am 
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Much sense, panda, much sense.

It seems so bizarre to me that there's any discussion about who should get sued for something like this - the idea that someone has behaved in a way which is criminally irresponsible, and should be punished for? What's the non-irresponsible alternative that's implied here? No kids on bikes? No elderly ladies out on the pavement? Kids to have insurance against being sued by dead ladies' rapacious relatives? Airbags on walking frames? Jeepers, Americans, get a grip!!

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 Post subject: Re: So, a four year old is being sued.
PostPosted: Sat Oct 30, 2010 7:26 am 
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Who said anything about being punished? A lawsuit is not jail time. That article mentioned nothing about criminal charges being brought.

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 Post subject: Re: So, a four year old is being sued.
PostPosted: Sat Oct 30, 2010 7:37 am 
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I think it's pretty unfair to decide - with the limited information given - that someone who files a lawsuit is all of a sudden a money hungry crasshole. I don't think a child needs to be named in the lawsuit, but I'll go out on a limb and just think that maybe a lawyer told them what needed to be done in this situation. And maybe that is correct protocol or maybe it was a dick move, I don't know I'm not a lawyer.

My grandma sued a store five years ago because of an accident she had inside it that ended up breaking her arm - and they were sued for negligence. With insurance it cost her $5,000 in medical bills from a broken arm all the way to dental work. And since they don't give you the medical bills before, they had to wait a year after the accident to press charges to know what they were suing for and how much. And they won, my grandparents didn't have to go into debt for something that wasn't her fault and I count that as a pretty happy story, even though someone who just heard it as "old lady falls in store, SUES STORE" probably thought she was a money grubbing crasshole. There wasn't any money to grub, it paid a bill and the incident was done.

The reasons this is probably an American centered problem is more likely this
tinglepants! wrote:
On a larger scale, this is yet another argument for universal health care: fewer lawsuits because someone "has to pay the cost" of surgery, etc.

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 Post subject: Re: So, a four year old is being sued.
PostPosted: Sat Oct 30, 2010 8:14 am 
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pandacookie wrote:
Someone being at fault does not mean someone needs to be sued.

Word.

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 Post subject: Re: So, a four year old is being sued.
PostPosted: Sat Oct 30, 2010 8:53 am 
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I'm with Fee and Fezza on this one.

Plus, as I best I can tell from the article the girl crashed her bike into the old lady. I'm sorry but that sounds a lot less like an accident than willful behavior on the part of the girl. Sure kids aren't mentally developed enough to understand all of the consequences of their actions, but I think it's fair to assume that a kid should know better than to mow down an old lady. Also, the BBC is saying that the injuries were related to her death (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-11657376). I feel like I need more hard facts to make a legitimate determination either way, but I'm definitely not going to jump to the conclusion that the law suit is in error just because it's a kid.


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 Post subject: Re: So, a four year old is being sued.
PostPosted: Sat Oct 30, 2010 10:13 am 
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Ruby Rose wrote:
Much sense, panda, much sense.

It seems so bizarre to me that there's any discussion about who should get sued for something like this - the idea that someone has behaved in a way which is criminally irresponsible, and should be punished for? What's the non-irresponsible alternative that's implied here? No kids on bikes? No elderly ladies out on the pavement? Kids to have insurance against being sued by dead ladies' rapacious relatives? Airbags on walking frames? Jeepers, Americans, get a grip!!


How about not letting your kids race their bikes on footpaths?

I don't think the estate should be suing for injury compensation now that the lady is dead, but should be able to if they need to cover medical costs.

I'm with fee on this one, we don't know enough facts to judge one way or the other yet. I really don't think we should be blaming the child on mowing the old dear down either.


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