The SE Texas Record Jan. 6, 2012, 3:55am

The 2012 year is finally here and we can put 2011 behind us. But, before we forget the tough year that was, let us not forget the frivolous lawsuits that were filed.

A list of the top ten lawsuits filed has been released by the United States Chamber of Commerce's Institute for Legal Reform (ILR). The list, the Top Ten Most Ridiculous Lawsuits of 2011 was released on New Year's Eve. The lawsuit that topped the list was one filed by a kidnapper against his victims because they did not aid him in evading the police.

"While these lawsuits vary from the outrageous to the humorous, abusive litigation is hardly a laughing matter," said ILR President Lisa Rickard. "ILR's annual poll of ridiculous lawsuits helps to remind us that abusive lawsuits affect real people and real businesses, and can have harmful results to lives, jobs, and even our economic growth."

The top ten Most Ridiculous Lawsuits of 2011 include the following:

-A kidnapped couple is sued by a convict who kidnapped them because they did not aid him in evading police.

-A bar is sued by a man who illegally carried a gun into that bar after he was injured in a fight. The lawsuit was filed by the man because the bar did not search him for a weapon.

-A mother is sued by her adult children because she sent cards that did not include gifts and because she allegedly plays favorites.

-A woman files a lawsuit asking for $5 million after she disagrees with a store over an 80 cent refund she was supposed to receive.

-A mother files a lawsuit against an exclusive preschool because of her child's college prospects.

-A man who filed a lawsuit that claims age discrimination also said that the judge presiding over his case is too old to hear the case.

-An obese man files a lawsuit against a burger business because the booths in the establishment are too tight to squeeze into.

-A woman files a lawsuit because of a movie trailer that does not have enough driving in it. The trailer was for the movie 'Drive.'

-A lawsuit filed by a cruise ship passenger claims that the ship was moving too fast, causing it to sway from side to side.

-Chuck E. Cheese is sued by a mother who claims that the games in the establishment encourage the children there to gamble.

These lawsuits pop up all over the United States each year, but these top ten lawsuits are some of the most frivolous you will ever come across. It will be tough to top these ten lawsuits in 2012 but with the rate frivolous lawsuits are filed, it might not be that difficult.

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