Pants Judge to Lose Job; Chungs Still Paying

By October 23, 2007Briefly Legal

The latest on Roy Pearson, the D.C. administrative law judge who sued his drycleaners for $54 million for supposedly misplacing his pants and then failing to meet his every demand. From The Washington Post, via the Seattle Times:

WASHINGTON — Roy Pearson Jr., whose $54 million lawsuit against a Northeast Washington dry-cleaning shop was rejected in court, is about to lose his job as an administrative-law judge, sources said Monday night.

A city commission voted Monday against reappointing Pearson to the bench of the Office of Administrative Hearings, a tribunal that hears cases involving various District of Columbia boards and agencies. Pearson, who was up for a 10-year term, had tried to hold on to the job.

The commission’s discussions are not public. Sources familiar with the deliberations said the panel hasn’t drafted a letter formally notifying Pearson of its decision. Until that is done, the sources said, the decision is not final.

The Chungs, Pearson’s targets and victims, closed one of their businesses because of the costs and other burdens from the legal harassment. From a simple perspective of legal temperament, Pearson should not be an administrative judge, and he should certainly not be reappointed to his city position. But losing his job doesn’t help the Chungs much either.

This case has drawn international attention because of the outrageous size of the claim and the strangeness of Pearson being a judge. But the same sort of legal abuse at one scale or another occurs every day in this country, with small-business owners facing the consequences.

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