Wednesday, January 25, 2006

$1 Billion Dollars!

I was learning last night in BLAW class about choosing a court for a lawsuit. If you will file suit against somebody, you will have to do it in a court that has jurisdiction over the matter. In the case of Merck & Co., a large corporation that does businesses nationwide, the choices for the suit could be county, state, or federal court because there is concurrent jurisdiction. In this case, the venue chosen is a state district court. The complaint is that VIOXX caused the death of a Starr County man. The plaintiffs seek $1 Billion.

I also learned that Starr County, being one of the poorest in the nation, has some of the biggest awards in the nation too. If the defendent has money, it's forfeit there. As a defendant, you need to change the venue to Cameron county, which is more conservative in its awards. As a plaintiff, you should try a suit in Starr County. I guess here in Hidalgo county we are somewhere in the middle.

Still, $1 Billion! If awarded, the attorney would get, what, maybe $500,000,000? The other half for the family would be tax free. That's a lot of cash for anybody. I'm almost speechless.

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