Bad corporate conduct isn’t new. In 1911, the Triangle Shirtwaist factory burned, and 145 people died. Why did they die? The owners were too cheap to install sprinkler systems because they wanted an easy way to burn their business in case they needed the insurance money. They locked the doors from the outside to ensure people didn’t steal or try to take “too many breaks.” They didn’t repair the elevators. Fire hoses were allowed to rot.
A few months more than 70 years later, a court in California adjudicated Grimshaw v. Ford, which was, at that time, the largest award in a personal injury case: $125 million. Ford Motor Company had decided that the few dollars it would have taken to make its Pinto safe amounted to “too much money.” They knew the design was faulty, yet they did nothing. Richard Grimshaw experienced second and third-degree burns and was permanently disfigured. The driver of a Pinto, Lily Gray, died.
In 2018, nothing much has changed. For example, Navient encouraged borrowers either to accept minimally effective debt-relief services that would make them ineligible for real help regarding their loans. Additionally, Navient accepted overpayments from borrowers, showed $0 owed for the next month, and still said that the borrowers, who thought they owed $0, were in default for not making a monthly payment. Worst of all, despite promising not to seek repayment of dead people’s loans, Navient went after surviving families and even charged interest on the time they spent doing it.
As disgusting as these practices both were and are, what happened at Michigan State University is even more abhorrent. The sexual predator Larry Nassar was allowed to abuse teen and preteen gymnasts at U.S.A. Gymnastics for decades. College officials, athletic trainers and coaches, lawyers, and dozens of other people looked the other way because of the money that Nassar brought in. The culture of exploitation and sexual predation at Michigan State was so ingrained that U.S.A. Gymnastics has gone through a revolving door of leaders who failed to change that culture. Some lasted only five days!
At The Cartwright Law Firm, we take on examples of corporate misconduct all the time. We focus our efforts on seeking the most advantageous positions and favorable outcomes for our clients. We can’t promise that we will be successful, of course, but we can promise to use whatever legal acumen we have to endeavor to do what’s best for every client. Should you find yourself in a situation where a corporation has wronged you or your family, turn to The Cartwright Law Firm. Protect your rights and call to set up a free initial consultation today.
Download full PDF here: Corporate Misconduct 2018