Thursday, December 22, 2005


It's the Holiday Season, the most wonderful time of year. Plaintiffs roasting in the witness box, motions nipping at your heels.

Many of you may not realize it, but Christmas controversies have enriched our legal heritage more than any other holiday with the exception of Robert E. Lee's Birthday. We're sure your family will hang on every word as you regale them with your knowledge of Christmas Jurisprudence during this, the most holiest of seasons.

Evil Magician v. Frosty et. al. 28 N.Pole 123 (1964)

Plaintiff brought suit in Chancery to recover a magical hat that he had voluntarily abandoned in a fit of pique. The court ruled that abandoned property, even of a magical nature, enures to the party that recovers said property. In dicta, the court also noted that it lacked jurisdiction over Defendant Frosty as he, "was not a natural person under the law but rather a precipitation-generated event."

Kringle et. al v Winter Warlock (Sombertown City Court)

Plaintiff sued for declaratory relief seeking an easement over property owned by Defendant in order to further his commercial endeavors. The court dismissed the suit noting it lacked subject matter jurisdiction over suits involving inter-state commerce and the issue was moot because defendant Warlock was now a "good guy".*

Rudolph v Clause, Individually and as President of Clause Co.

This suit tested the constitutionality of the Reindeer with Disability Act (hereinafter RDA). Plaintiff sought "reasonable accommodations" for his workplace where, he alleges, he was treated in a hostile manner do to the luminosity of his nose. The court decided, sua sponte, in favor of Plaintiff. In an uncharacteristically harsh ruling, the court stated:

"Defendants actions are inexplicable and they have failed to raise a question of fact on the issue of a non-discriminatory basis for their actions. Plaintiff's disability in no way interfered with his employment responsibilities. Indeed, Defendant himself begged Plaintiff for assistance when Plaintiff's disability proved useful during inclement weather."

Kringle v Burgermeister & Town of Sombertown

Plaintiff sought a writ of Habeas Corpus after being imprisoned for "distributing toys" in contravention of a local ordinance. The Court found that the Defendants ban on toys for health reasons was rational and designed to achieve a legitimate municipal interest. **

Herbie v Clause Enterprises and the United Toymakers Union

Plaintiff sued, challenging the North Pole's rigid closed shop laws, whereby elves could only seek employment in limited fields, all related to the toy-making industry. Plaintiff sought to open a dental practice but was denied a zoning variance. The court never reached the merits when it was established that Plaintiff lacked a dental license.

* In a separate proceeding, the Defendant Warlock was later arrested and convicted of possession of magical acorns with intent to distribute.

** Ironically, Defendant Burgermeister instituted the ban after tripping over a toy and fracturing his ankle, thereby establishing the legitimate, health-related interest.