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  • Greedy People (and the frivolous lawsuits that follow)

    I been meaning to start a thread like this for years.

    The threat of a lawsuit, whether frivolous or not, is a modern day trend that just keeps getting more threatening every year. There was a time, some decades ago, when average folk didn't have to worry about getting sued. Today, it's a version of the poor mans lottery - if there's someone or something (usually that something has money) to sue, they will be sued. Boils down to greed and the easy buck. Sometimes though I think that the only way the middle class will survive in the future is to sue the rich or corporations because IMO there's a class war being waged since the "Great Recession". But that's another discussion within itself...

    Anyhoo, here's todays stupid lawsuit that thankfully was dismissed. I remember when it was filed some months ago and thought "ahhh, here we go, hopefully its thrown out".

    +1 for a judge with some common sense.


    'Ski buddy' not liable for heli-ski death, court rules

    B.C. judge rules British tourist did not have a contractual obligation when his 'buddy' died

    CBC News Posted: Jan 28, 2014 12:47 PM PT Last Updated: Jan 28, 2014 1:49 PM PT

    A widow whose husband died while helicopter skiing in southeastern B.C. has lost her lawsuit against his “ski buddy” for not keeping an eye on him.

    Mark Kennedy of Colorado died when he fell into a tree well on a remote mountain north of Revelstoke, while on a heli-skiing trip with Mike Wiegele Helicopter Skiing in January 2009.

    Tree wells are deep narrow holes created next to the trunks of trees when heavy snow falls from the branches. People who fall in them can be trapped and suffocate in the deep snow.

    In her lawsuit, Kennedy's widow Elizabeth alleged her husband was paired with British skier, Adrian Coe, as “ski buddies.” She claimed Coe, who lives in England, was therefore contractually obligated to stay close to her husband, keep him in sight, and assist or alert guides and other skiers if he observed his buddy in need of assistance.

    The lawsuit alleged Coe failed to perform his duties as a “ski buddy” and therefore delayed the search and possibly a chance to rescue and revive Mark Kennedy.

    But Justice Fisher dismissed the lawsuit in her ruling issued on Monday.
    "It is indeed very sad that Mr. Kennedy met a tragic and untimely death, but he did so after a terrible accident while participating in a high-risk sport and responsibility for his death cannot be placed on Mr. Coe," wrote Fisher.

    "It is my view that the nature of any obligations assumed by Mr. Coe and Mr. Kennedy was not contractual. There is no basis on which to find the existence of a contract or any contractual intention."

    Coe's lawyers had argued he was paired with Kennedy without any consultation and that he alerted guides as soon as he noticed Kennedy was no longer with the group, shortly after Coe and the other skiers arrived at the bottom of the run.

    Kennedy had been on heli-skiing trips with the same operator at least four previous times and was well aware of the terrain and the risks involved with such an activity.

    Kennedy was a successful trial lawyer in Colorado before his death. His wife received half his assets, according to his will, amounting to more than $18 million. She was seeking compensation for the loss of her husband’s future earnings.
    http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/britis...ules-1.2514422


    Could you imagine what kind of precedent that this would have set if this would have been allowed?

    As I've said many times in the past, you can't cap greed.
    Time spent in the Rockies is never deducted from the rest of your life

  • #2
    I won't really touch on the overall discussion on tort law, but as someone who has done a lot of mechanized skiing over the years, I was following this lawsuit. It was very, very worrisome for the entire industry. Glad to see that it was dismissed.

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by Marcel Petrin View Post
      Glad to see that it was dismissed.
      Same.

      I couldn't imagine going cat skiing and seeing someone else on the trip kill themselves while doing something stupid, just to see their widow take me for everything I own afterwards.

      Comment


      • #4
        I think i understand what you are trying to say but i don't agree with the way you are saying it.

        If someone suffers a financial loss, which this lady has, it can be very prudent to seek for those damages.

        To say this is Greed based would be your interpretation and your words.

        if the same event happened under a different framework she may have gotten payment. Which, in all honesty, she would be entitled to under the law.
        "Do you give people who already use transit a better service, or do you build it where they don't use it in the hopes they might start to use it?" Nenshi

        Comment


        • #5
          Wow, 18 million and she isn't happy.

          This is why I went off the other week on another high risk topic...base jumping. It more often than not leads to these lawsuits, or even discussions on an outright ban on some activities that can be really safe overall.

          I was also worried for search and rescue outfits, outfitters in general, and others that support and completely stress the safety of what you should be doing...and the risks therein. A decision would have lead to other activities such as spelunking, diving, mountaineering, aerobatics, etc...

          I am very glad at this outcome, and the decision handed down was explained very well by Justice Fisher.
          President and CEO - Airshow.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by edmonton daily photo View Post
            I think i understand what you are trying to say but i don't agree with the way you are saying it.

            If someone suffers a financial loss, which this lady has, it can be very prudent to seek for those damages.

            To say this is Greed based would be your interpretation and your words.

            if the same event happened under a different framework she may have gotten payment. Which, in all honesty, she would be entitled to under the law.
            The point is, her husband knowingly engaged in a high risk activity, and through no fault of his ski buddy, was killed. So sure, his wife suffered a financial loss in terms of her husband's lost future earnings, but that is 100% on her husband. No one else.

            Comment


            • #7
              Amen.
              President and CEO - Airshow.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Marcel Petrin View Post
                Originally posted by edmonton daily photo View Post
                I think i understand what you are trying to say but i don't agree with the way you are saying it.

                If someone suffers a financial loss, which this lady has, it can be very prudent to seek for those damages.

                To say this is Greed based would be your interpretation and your words.

                if the same event happened under a different framework she may have gotten payment. Which, in all honesty, she would be entitled to under the law.
                The point is, her husband knowingly engaged in a high risk activity, and through no fault of his ski buddy, was killed. So sure, his wife suffered a financial loss in terms of her husband's lost future earnings, but that is 100% on her husband. No one else.
                That would be why I said the above which is now bolded.

                it's pretty simple if you are negligent under torte law for damage done to someone else that other person deserves an award.

                I could throw it back on the people who bawlk at this and say they are just jealous. I will also point out that the people who, I feel are often jealous, just take a callous look look at the money. I am sure that, had this lady been given a settlement, she would have traded it all to have her spouse back. Assuming they didn't hate each other and just stayed together because it was too expensive to divorce.

                If I am wronged i deserve compensation... if I feel wronged I deserve to have my day in court... and as proven here the court decided against her argument.

                So scream all ya want about greed.. I see due process... which is one of the few things that set us apart from dictatorships. Lets try celebrating a system that works instead of accusing people who lost a loved one of greed for exercising her rights under the law. Next some people will start saying that girls get raped because they dress like sluts.

                wow

                As for the high risk activity.... Window washing sky scrapers is (or was) a high risk activity as well... it doesn't mean that prudent steps shouldn't be taken in order to ensure the maximum amount of safety.

                long gone are the days of this... and for good reason.



                http://shemovesthefurniture.blogspot...1_archive.html
                Last edited by edmonton daily photo; 28-01-2014, 04:40 PM.
                "Do you give people who already use transit a better service, or do you build it where they don't use it in the hopes they might start to use it?" Nenshi

                Comment


                • #9
                  Next some people will start saying that girls get raped because they dress like sluts.
                  No. Only you have said that. And you're trying much to hard to throw in all the "what if's". There is no what if's, the court case was exactly what it was and judged, and rightly so.
                  Time spent in the Rockies is never deducted from the rest of your life

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    One would think insurance companies would offer insurance for people who engage in extreme sports. I can see people who engage in these pass times having a buddy to 'look out' for them but people cannot envision all eventualities. If the sport holds a degree of danger I should imagine any 'buddy' would be too busy looking out for themselves rather than someone else. It's too bad that insurance is not offered to every day people who like to live life on the edge. By everyday people I don't mean Evil Knivel or circus acrobats etc. they are a whole other group who do extreme things for a living.
                    Gone............................and very quickly forgotten may I add.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Gemini View Post
                      One would think insurance companies would offer insurance for people who engage in extreme sports. I can see people who engage in these pass times having a buddy to 'look out' for them but people cannot envision all eventualities. If the sport holds a degree of danger I should imagine any 'buddy' would be too busy looking out for themselves rather than someone else. It's too bad that insurance is not offered to every day people who like to live life on the edge. By everyday people I don't mean Evil Knivel or circus acrobats etc. they are a whole other group who do extreme things for a living.
                      They do. It's expensive.
                      "The only really positive thing one could say about Vancouver is, it’s not the rest of Canada." Oink (britishexpats.com)

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Kitlope...a second AMEN!

                        Due process.

                        This would have gone through investigations, discoveries, conversations, meetings, more investigations, letters from "experts", and all other types of evidence prior to this ever reaching the Justice's desk. Odds are quite good that the plaintiff and council knew the low chances of a successful outcome prior to it going forward, and the defendant and council had very high expectations on a successful outcome. Otherwise, odds are this would be settled out of court, or if it hit court it was more than likely a result of the settlement offers being rejected by one side or another.

                        From what I see...due process upheld!

                        No one is jealous, at least as far as I can see.

                        No one is gleefully or even slightly taunting or disrespecting the plaintiff on the death.

                        No one is revoking rights.

                        No one is trying to correlate someone pranging into a tree while happily and voluntarily recreational skiing....to rape - the willful, violent, invasive, violating, control seizing, and/or subversive/drugged forcing of someone else's desires onto the body of another.

                        They are just looking at the case for what it is, and questioning why it went forward after a lot of due process. That in no way correlates to removing rights or likening the questions to separations from disctatorships...in fact...the very fact that we can question the case is ample evidence that this is not a dictatorship!

                        From what I read, there is a question on the table if there wasn't an element of a desire for more income...or to lash out and hurt via compensation and punitive actions (whether posthumously at her hubby for going in the first place, or whatever the rationale)...I think that is what is being encapsulated by the word "greed"...

                        ...in short, after all the arguments, what was the final motivation to move forward with litigation vs accepting the reality and starting to move on with living? To that end, that is up to the plaintiff to decide. From what I see, the folks here are only commenting on the judgment and actions based on the facts presented in the case as it stands.

                        @Gemini...many companies do have provisions for high risk activities or professions, and you pay accordingly...some don't admit to these and thereby nullify some packages...
                        President and CEO - Airshow.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I am surprised she did not sue the helicopter company. People should be able to sign a waiver stating they will be someone's buddy and look out for them providing they are not held responsible if things go wrong that are beyond their control. The onus should not be on the buddy if said buddy has no control over the actions of another. It would be the same if a person was skydiving. A buddy would not be much good if your parachute did not open or got tangled.
                          Gone............................and very quickly forgotten may I add.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            ...actually...many waivers do exactly that...

                            Try booking time at a motorsports park, or learn to skydive, or dive...or learn to fly...

                            They all have "hold harmless" clauses...look at an airline ticket...
                            President and CEO - Airshow.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              I don't know how lawyers work in the States but you would think they would have counselled her and told her she did not have a case that they thought was winnable. I don't understand why the actions of her husband all of a sudden became someone else's fault. It's not like he was tethered to his 'buddy' and the buddy caused the accident.
                              Gone............................and very quickly forgotten may I add.

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