Football Fan Has No ‘Standing To Sue’

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feldman_amy Amy Feldman
Amy E. Feldman is a business commentator and legal business...
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By Amy E. Feldman

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) - Unless you live in Seattle, you were probably bummed by the end of your team’s football season. Not, however, as distraught as Daniel Spuck, an avid Steelers fan, who filed a lawsuit against the NFL and commissioner Roger Goodell, because of what he said was a blown call in the Chiefs/Chargers game that caused the Chiefs to win unfairly, thereby eliminating the Steelers from the post season.

And while there are many, including almost certainly Peyton Manning, who would like to have a do-over for the end of the season, could Mr. Spuck have a point? If one team were sent to the playoffs unfairly, why can’t the fans sue?

The answer is because they can’t. Under the law, you don’t have the right to file a lawsuit unless you’ve got what ís called ‘standing to sue’.

Legally speaking, in order to be allowed to file a lawsuit you can’t just be interested as a member of the general public in the resolution of the dispute. The person must have a personal stake in the outcome of the controversy.

Unless you’ve been injured physically or monetarily (not of the illegal betting variety), you can’t file a lawsuit.

So while many of us sympathize with Mr. Spuck, we wish him – and Peyton Manning – better luck next year.

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