Special Report

25 Really Weird Lawsuits You Wouldn't Believe Were Ever Filed

Customers disappointed that Red Bull did not energize them
> Year: 2016
> Result: Settled out of court

Red Bull’s famous slogan “Red Bull gives you wings” got the company in some trouble. A class-action lawsuit accused the company of having misleading ads and making false claims. Plaintiffs said the energy drink did not give people wings, even figuratively speaking, that is, they didn’t feel energized. They said the company lacked evidence to claim the beverage could improve one’s focus. Red Bull settled out of court and agreed to pay $640,000.

Source: usfwssoutheast / Flickr

Is firefighter’s fear of fire a disability?
> Year: 2014
> Result: Plaintiff lost

Shayn Proler from the Houston Fire Department is afraid of fire. He was reassigned to an office position so he would not have to come in direct contact with what scared him, but he wanted to remain in his former job in the fire suppression unit. He claimed his fear was a disability and that he was discriminated against because of his disability. His case made it to the Texas Supreme Court, which ruled there was no evidence Proler was discriminated against on account of a disability.

Source: cyano66 / Getty Images

Kidnapper sues hostages for escaping
> Year: 2012
> Result: Lawsuit dismissed

Jesse Dimmick, a fugitive facing a murder charge, kidnapped a Kansas couple in September 2009. At some point he fell asleep and they escaped. They sued Dimmick for over $75,000 in damages. His response was to countersue for breach of contract. He claimed he and the couple had a legally binding oral agreement for them to hide him from the police. His case was dismissed.

Source: sshaw75 / Getty Images

Same price for a burger with and without cheese
> Year: 2018
> Result: Lawsuit dismissed

Two McDonald’s customers from Florida sued the fast-food chain for $5 million because they were made to pay for a Quarter Pounder sandwich without cheese the same price as the sandwich with cheese (the difference is about 30 cents). A judge dismissed the case with prejudice, which means they can’t file the suit again. The basis for the dismissal was that the plaintiffs could not prove the price they had to pay caused them any harm.

Source: Liudmila_Fadzeyeva / Getty Images

Husband sues wife over ‘ugly’ baby
> Year: 2012
> Result: Plaintiff won

Boy meets a pretty girl, boy marries the girl; they have kids. One similar tale did not have such a happy ending, however. Jian Feng from China saw his newborn daughter, who, he said, was “incredibly ugly” and did not look like either parent. He accused his wife of cheating on him. At that point, she admitted she had several plastic surgeries before they had met. He sued on the grounds of false pretenses, claiming she misled him by hiding her cosmetic history. He won the case, and his wife was made to pay him more than $120,000.