Rock Paper Scissors in an American Legal Trial.

The Precedent has been set to use Rock Paper Scissors in an American Legal Trial. In 2006, American federal judge Gregory Presnell from the Middle District of Florida ordered opposing sides play a game of Rock Paper Scissors in order to settle where the two lawyers would conduct the deposition of a witness. The choices were the building where they both work, four floors apart, or a court reporter’s office down the street. The ruling in Avista Management v. Wausau Underwriters stated:

Upon consideration of the Motion – the latest in a series of Gordian knots that the parties have been unable to untangle without enlisting the assistance of the federal courts – it is ORDERED that said Motion is DENIED. Instead, the Court will fashion a new form of alternative dispute resolution, to wit: at 4:00 P.M. on Friday, June 30, 2006, counsel shall convene at a neutral site agreeable to both parties. If counsel cannot agree on a neutral site, they shall meet on the front steps of the Sam M. Gibbons U.S. Courthouse, 801 North Florida Ave., Tampa, Florida 33602. Each lawyer shall be entitled to be accompanied by one paralegal who shall act as an attendant and witness. At that time and location, counsel shall engage in one (1) game of “rock, paper, scissors.” The winner of this engagement shall be entitled to select the location for the 30(b)(6) deposition to be held somewhere in Hillsborough County during the period July 11–12, 2006.

Unfortunately, the lawyers were able to come to a conclusion over where the deposition was held without the game being played. Our guess is that a RPS game was played, but behind closed doors in order to protect the losing lawyer, but the fact that now there is precedent in the legal system to use Rock Paper Scissors to settle disputes it is the greatest game that we do not know the winner.

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