Being a celebrity is hard work. After a long day of playing make believe and/or sportsball with your millionaire buddies, you just want to go home and relax in your floating mansion castle.
But this is America, the land of lawsuits.
Despite our obsession with celebrity culture, there are some cases that have no place on the docket -- even if it would put us in the same room as some of our idols.
Of course the Pope has an exalted legal team
In the US, motor vehicle lawsuits involve the negotiation of hundreds of thousands of dollars in medical bills and damages. But in Deutschland, it’s all about the little things -- like buckling up during your 6mph roll through the crowded streets.
A truly heroic man spotted Pope Benedict XVI riding in the Popemobile without his seatbelt safely fastened...and sued him. In fact, the suit argued that the 1+ hour ride of continuous non-seatbelting qualified Mr. Giant White Hat as a “repeat offender,” justifying a €2,500 fine (or $3,553 if you’re unfamiliar with monopoly money).
You may not love the Catholic Church, but ol’ Ratzinger was probably just on the hunt for his favorite German beer, give him a break.
‘Doppelgänger’ isn’t Latin, obviously it has no place in the courtroom
In Oregon, Allen Ray Heckard’s life was ruined...by Michael Jordan’s fame. After being mistaken for the greatest basketball player of all time one too many times, Mr. Heckard sued His Airness and Nike for $832 million.
Nevermind that the two men are six inches, 30 pounds, and eight years apart, Not-MJ suffered at least 15 years of “harassment” in public and at work. Which seems like something he could’ve easily avoided had he stopped shaving his head and wearing a single earring.
Mr. Heckard eventually dropped the case, probably when he realized that his suit was the legal equivalent of climbing onto the stage at Coachella and screaming “STOP LOOKING AT ME!”
Making lemonade out of Lemonade
There are plenty of reasons to criticize Beyoncé: preaching feminism in the face of overly sexualized performances, using animal fur in her clothing line, and being credited in a movie titled Wow! Wow! Wubbzy!: Wubb Idol.
But if you’re trampled by Ms. Knowles’ rabid ‘Beyhive’ you can’t exactly blame her for their actions.
We handle a lot of personal injury cases here in Renton. There are plenty of viable lawsuits when it comes to unsafe venues, but when you’ve got 20,000 Converse imprints on your face and the Queen Bey is wearing stilettos -- that’s a case of misplaced blame.
There are limits to how many insane lawsuits you can file
Another woman took a far more direct approach to blaming Beyoncé for her problems. Ms. Tina Seals claimed that Ms. Knowles paid her to surrogate Blue Ivy -- which is apparently a legally recognized name and not a Batman villain.
Fans went crazy analyzing Beyoncé’s public appearances and dissecting every lyric of her music for clues, but what most people forgot to check was Seals’ legal history. Over the years, she has made bogus legal maternity claims pertaining to the children of:
- Kim Kardashian
- Mariah Carey
- Janet Jackson
- Annnnddddd Kate Middleton
Tina’s maternity lawsuits got so out of hand that a New York judge tried to legally forbid her from filing any more. Score one for pregnant divas.
Shameless exploitation of...everyone
KimK probably didn’t ask a homeless woman to surrogate her child, but she did marry NBA player Kris Humphries for two short months to boost her ratings -- and Rob Delaney thought he could sue her for it.
Delaney alleged that the couple’s nuptials were only about making money from the $10 million televised wedding special, and anyone who paid to advertise their product during the farce of a wedding was being swindled.
In our never-ending quest to revive Latin, we call this suggestio falsi, or a false statement made in the negotiation of a contract. Advertisers were sold “The wedding of the century” and what they ended up with was “Kim tries, and swiftly rejects, Khloé’s NBA advice.”
Buckingham, LaGrandeur & Williams can help you settle a divorce, establish paternity, and argue personal injury cases.
However, we cannot...will not help you argue that you mothered a pop star's illegitimate child, that some reality TV star’s marriage damaged you emotionally, or that an elderly man riding in the Popemobile endangered the public by not buckling up.