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I'm researching law suits against non profits. Current I don't have lexis, If someone sued an environmental group in small claims court where could I find a record of that motion?  It seems like an interesting little field.  How many environmental groups have been sued for various things, how many have successfully be sued?  Do charities get sued a lot or do people  tend to avoid this as much as possible?  Who's gonna sue Save the Children for example? Are any groups politcally targeted by opponents?  Anyone want to steal this idea for a PhD dissertation?

In particular defendant St Louis Earthday... plaintif artist Cindy Tower?, would be of interest. would be on public record somewhere, right?

Can anyone point me in the right direction?

thanks in advance!

Originally posted to Salo on Tue Mar 17, 2009 at 01:17 PM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  not exactly tip worthy... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Lujane

    ...but curious to see if anyone can point me in the right direction to either research these cases or in fact do a bit research for me. It just seems a bit odd to sue a charity...anyone got any excellent tales of such lawsuits and the plaintiff making them?

    the intelligence community is no longer geared towards telling the president what they think the president wants to hear

    by Salo on Tue Mar 17, 2009 at 01:21:28 PM PDT

    •  charities get sued like everybody else (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Lujane, oaktownadam

      You think a supplier or a contract counterparty would hesistate to sue somebody who owes them money because they are a charity? Nobody would even hesitate. I would expect the same general litigation trail to exist for a non profit as for a profit company - breach of contract, tax liens, employee actions.

      Law is a light which in different countries attracts to it different species of blind insects. Nietzsche

      by Marcion on Tue Mar 17, 2009 at 01:24:36 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  probly... (0+ / 0-)

        ...still it's a strange thing to be suing a charity.

        the intelligence community is no longer geared towards telling the president what they think the president wants to hear

        by Salo on Tue Mar 17, 2009 at 01:26:37 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Yes but those are somewhat incidental (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Lujane

        Sure, they can and will arise, in the course of normal operations.  But the question of interest is, to what extent do they get sued not in spite of but BECAUSE OF their charitable or public interest status?  This happens a LOT nowadays (see my comment below re SLAPP).

        "The extinction of the human race will come from its inability to EMOTIONALLY comprehend the exponential function." -- Edward Teller

        by lgmcp on Tue Mar 17, 2009 at 01:41:45 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  check the court's website (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    lgmcp, Judgment at Nuremberg, Lujane

    Check the court having jurisdiction over the area where the non profit is located and does business. You can usually even do a search of their cases online. Then once you have the case numbers, you can go in and look at all the pleadings.

    Law is a light which in different countries attracts to it different species of blind insects. Nietzsche

    by Marcion on Tue Mar 17, 2009 at 01:22:22 PM PDT

    •  That's what I thought (0+ / 0-)

      'm just wondering how many jurisdictions i'd need to look into find singular cases, without lexis or westlaw.

      the intelligence community is no longer geared towards telling the president what they think the president wants to hear

      by Salo on Tue Mar 17, 2009 at 01:25:54 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  If no Lexis (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    lgmcp, Lujane, Marcion

    Try Westlaw.

    Other than that, if you know the jurisdiction you can go to the court website, but those records are incomplete.  You could also go to Pacer, but that costs $.

    I'm a lawyer and I'd love to know if there were a cheaper/better way to make this happen.

  •  Findlaw.com (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Catte Nappe, lgmcp, Lujane, Marcion

    If you know the names of the parties, you can try www.findlaw.com.
    Also, if you know the parties, try google. Sometimes you can pull up a pdf of the case your looking for that way, and also it can help with finding other cases that cite your case.  

  •  S.L.A.P. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Salo, KenBee, Lujane

    Strategic lawsuits against public participation.

    Google away!  One good site here:
    http://www.gjs.net/...

    "The extinction of the human race will come from its inability to EMOTIONALLY comprehend the exponential function." -- Edward Teller

    by lgmcp on Tue Mar 17, 2009 at 01:30:38 PM PDT

    •  Environmental groups are the primary target (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      KenBee, Lujane

      of SLAPP lawsuits.  Naturally the Bush-packed judiciary has been more receptive to these than ever before.

      "The extinction of the human race will come from its inability to EMOTIONALLY comprehend the exponential function." -- Edward Teller

      by lgmcp on Tue Mar 17, 2009 at 01:39:15 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  "Small Claims Court" has very limited jursdiction (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    oaktownadam

    It varies by state, but the basic idea is that you can only sue for money or tort damages for a limited sum, like $5,000 or $10,000.  You can't sue for injunctive relief, i.e., to make somebody do or stop doing something.  Within that jurisdictional limitation, there's very little reason why a non-profit entity can't be sued just like a for-profit entity or a natural person.  It's not the sort of question that has any meaning in the abstract.

    Where perception is reality, the truth is irrelevant.

    by legalarray on Tue Mar 17, 2009 at 02:03:40 PM PDT

  •  Why do you want to sue Earth Day St. Louis? (0+ / 0-)

    Who are you anyway?

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