Seat Belt
The litany of complaints Kimberly Garrity's two children had against their mother included making the children buckle their seat belts. Image: Flickr / bengoodger / CC-BY

In 2009, adult children in Chicago filed a lawsuit against their mother. These children were suing for bad mothering, claiming infliction of emotional distress. After years of legal filings, a judge has thrown the case out of court.

Charges filed against Kimberly Garrity

Steven Miner II and Kathryn Garrity, 23 and 20 years old, respectively, tried to sue their mother for “bad mothering” and intentional infliction of emotional distress. The children initially filed the lawsuit in 2009, listing the perceived wrongs they had endured during their rearing by Kimberly Garrity. These wrongs included:

Broken relationships behind the lawsuit

The children of Kimberly Garrity assure their mother in the paperwork for the lawsuit that they love her, but they say they felt she was negligent in raising them. One of the lawyers representing the children is the ex-husband of Kimberly Garrity, Steven Miner, who asked his children to file the lawsuit against his ex-wife. Garrity’s ex, Miner, filed in court papers a statement that: “Everyone makes mistakes, but … there must be accountability for actions. … Parenting is no different.” The lawsuit asked for $50,000 in compensation for the emotional distress the children said they suffered.

Illinois court throws out case

The court fight has been going on for the last two years, since the first documents were filed in 2009. An appeals court in Illinois threw the case out of court, stating that allowing the case to continue would have “opened the floodgates and exposed child rearing to excessive judicial scrutiny and interference.” The lawyer for Kimberly Garrity released a statement after the ruling, stating that the “litany of childish complaints and ingratitude” amounted to “the ultimate revenge” from a harassing ex-husband.

Kimberly Garrity must pay for lawsuit

Even though the case has been thrown out of court, Kimberly Garrity is responsible for paying the legal fees associated for the two years of court fights. The two children had all legal costs paid for by their father. Illinois tort law generally carries an exception that prevents children from suing their parents. The judge refused to assess fines and fees against the suing parties, though Kimberly Garrity does have the option of re-filing suit against her children for malicious legal action.


Salt Lake Tribune:
The Globe and Mail:

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