$54M Pants Lawsuit On Last Legs

Few options left for Pearson

Thursday, Dec 18, 2008  |  Updated 1:50 PM PDT
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$54M Pants Lawsuit On Last Legs

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An appeals court has rejected a request for a new trial for a man who sued a local dry cleaners for $54 million because the store lost his pants.

Roy Pearson, a former D.C. administrative law judge, sued the dry cleaners claiming the store did not live up to its promise of "satisfaction guaranteed."

Pearson lost in lower court, and on Thursday a panel of three judges agreed with that ruling.

Pearson sued Custom Cleaners for $67 million in 2005 after the cleaners misplaced a pair of his trousers. He later lowered his demand to $54 million.

Pearson maintains that his lawsuit has merit under consumer protection laws.

The owners later sold the shop involved in the dispute and another store they owned, citing a loss of revenue and the emotional strain of defending the lawsuit.   The family still has one more dry cleaners, located at 7th and M streets.

"We are very very happy with the result and thank everyone for supporting us," said Jin Chung, part of the family that owned the store. "The past three years have been very difficult but we hope this nightmare is finally over."

When Pearson first brought the suit, he was an administrative law judge. Pearson later lost his job when a D.C. commission voted not to reappoint him.

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