Weird question I just had, sort of summarised in the title really. Has there ever been a case, anywhere in the world, where a person or company (or company vs subsiduary) has taken themselves to court. If an example exists, its probably because of some weird contract or legal clause that forces the case, and will get thrown out quickly (but prove me wrong...).

What I'm not looking for:

  • Cases where an employee (or ex employee) has taken action against their employer (or ex employer). Grievences for any number of reasons are quite common.
  • Family vs family cases. This is unfortunately also quite common, ie over wills and issues of inheritance. (The exception to this is detailed below).

One case I'm aware of is which is family vs family that was not serious but went to court is the case of a woman who took her nephew to court after he gave her a hug and broke her wrist. This was forced because of a stipulation in her medical insurance.

I'm guessing any company vs self action will be for tax evasion/hollywood accounting purposes.

  • There are several examples here (scroll to bottom of the page). May 10, 2020 at 18:54
  • Thanks, loads of examples!
    – Wes
    May 11, 2020 at 10:01

1 Answer 1


Yes there has

At common law you cannot be both a plaintiff and a defendant.

However, statute law can allow this - either intentionally or unintentionally. An example is Barbara Bagley v. Barbara Bagley, 2016 WL 6299507 (Utah 2016).

  • +1. Neat, though in some sense this seems more like a case of the legal system being bad at case names than of her litigating against herself. Really this case should have been called something more like "Estate of Bradley vom Braur vs. Barbara Bagley". As a further aside, the article fails to mention what is clearly the most important question of all: where did she sit during the court proceedings? May 11, 2020 at 7:31
  • @zibadawatimmy only people (natural persons and corporations) can sue and be sued - an estate is a trust so the trustee (the executor) must sue. In any event, in this case, the statute allows heirs to sue so she was suing herself and clearly only to trigger an insurance policy.
    – Dale M
    May 11, 2020 at 11:49

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