Friday, March 24, 2006

The State is the taxpayer

A woman, Louise O'Keeffe, who was abused by her teacher in the 1970s has lost a landmark case against the State and now faces costs of €500,000. She attempted to sue the state for damages but the High Court found against her.
The High Court found the State was not to blame for the indecent assaults inflicted on Ms O'Keeffe by a primary school principal when she was eight years old.
Now it is very easy to feel that Ms O'Keeffe has been treated harshly and that the State should pay her costs. Unfortunately it's not that clear cut. Remember, the money spent by the State comes from the taxpayers. If the State pays her costs then they send a message to other less deserving cases, sue the State it's free and you have nothing to loose. I really hate the way the media reports that people sue the State, but then report that cost over runs hit the taxpayer.

But lets not forget who the real villain is here, a legal system that generates half a million euros in fees for one case!

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