Friday, May 04, 2007

The $65 million dollar pants ...

... or how a judge took a cleaners to the cleaners

A legal matter that started more than two years ago in DC is just now hitting the blogosphere radar screen. You might have heard by now that a DC administrative law judge, Roy Pearson Jr., has sued Custom Cleaners in Northeast DC under the District's Consumer Protection and Procedures Act. Pearson is alleging, among other things, that window signs advertising "Satisfaction Guaranteed" and "Same Day Service" have fraudulently deceived customers.

It seems the judge brought in a suit to be cleaned. A suit that he wanted to wear on his first day on the bench. When he went back to pick up the suit the pants were missing. They did turn up a few days later, but that wasn't good enough for the judge.

Sherman Joyce writes in The Examiner:
The pants were found long ago and are readily available to Pearson. What may become unavailable to him, unless he drops this wholly outrageous and abusive lawsuit, is a reputation as an ethical, high-integrity officer of the court.
The American Tort Reform Association has offered to buy Pearson a high-quality suit of his choosing if he'll just do the right thing. Fearing that their offer might not do the trick, the ATRA has written a letter to the four men who will decide this week whether or not Pearson will be reappointed to a 10-year term.

Wizbang has a nice recap of the case, under the heading "Why lawyers are the most hated class of people in America." Their post outlines just how a $10 dry cleaning bill for a pair of trousers has ballooned into a $65 million civil lawsuit.

If you would like to write to the review panel, their contact information is listed below:

Chief Administrative Law Judge Tyrone Butler
D.C. Office of Administrative Hearings
825 N. Capitol Street, NE
Washington, D.C., 20002

Commissioner Robert Rigsby
Commissioner Henry Levine
Commissioner Peter Wilner
Commission on Selection and Tenure of Administrative Law Judges
441 Fourth Street NW Suite 540 S
Washington, D.C. 20001

The Office of Administrative Hearings telephone number is 202-478-1421.

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