Those who know me know that I adamantly defend our civil liability system against baseless media accusations that portray most plaintiffs as bums looking for easy money and plaintiffs' attornies as unscrupulous ambulance chasers. Its just not the case…. most of the time ….
However, this accident case filed against the Frenchtown Township Fire Department and firefighter Fred Carter is one that I cannot defend. Hopefully the plaintiff and his attorney get what they deserve: a Rule 11 sanction by the court for filing a frivilous lawsuit!!!!!
Here is an abbreviated version of Rule 11 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure (most state's adopt a comparable rule).
(a) Signature. Every pleading, written motion, and other paper must be signed by at least one attorney of record in the attorney's name — or by a party personally if the party is unrepresented. …
(b) Representations to the Court. By presenting to the court a pleading, written motion, or other paper — whether by signing, filing, submitting, or later advocating it — an attorney or unrepresented party certifies that to the best of the person's knowledge, information, and belief, formed after an inquiry reasonable under the circumstances:
(1) it is not being presented for any improper purpose, such as to harass, cause unnecessary delay, or needlessly increase the cost of litigation;
(2) the claims, defenses, and other legal contentions are warranted by existing law or by a nonfrivolous argument for extending, modifying, or reversing existing law or for establishing new law;
(3) the factual contentions have evidentiary support or, if specifically so identified, will likely have evidentiary support after a reasonable opportunity for further investigation or discovery; …
(c) Sanctions. … If, after notice and a reasonable opportunity to respond, the court determines that Rule 11(b) has been violated, the court may impose an appropriate sanction on any attorney, law firm, or party that violated the rule or is responsible for the violation. …