Chris Brook-Carter

Courting lunacy

By: Chris Brook-Carter - 30 October 2003 12:30

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Next week we will be publishing a feature on the threat of litigation within the drinks industry, following an interview with one of the leading lawyers in the field, the UK’s Paul Howcroft.

But before we do, if you needed any further evidence that the litigation culture is here to stay - and a very real threat to drinks businesses the world over - then it is worth checking out this week’s Australian press.

Among the clippings you’ll find news that a man has been trying to sue the beer company Tooheys ltd after hurting his wrist trying to open a bottle of Tooheys' Extra Dry.

Restaurateur Louis Neil Franklin Miller claims he suffered a permanent injury to his left wrist while trying to crack open a cold one having just finished a game of tennis.

I am glad to say that he failed, with the judge ruling that while he was satisfied Mr Miller injured his wrist trying to open the bottle, he would not award him any damages. This was because Miller admitted using excessive force to open the bottle, when he could have used a cloth or bottle opener, which were both readily available to him.

However, the very fact he got this far says something about the culture we are living in. The response to next week’s article, as well as its advice should you get caught up in a litigation case should be interesting.
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