Defense verdict at trial for national public transportation company.
Breach of contract claims were brought in the Connecticut Superior Court. The plaintiff had to purchase public transportation tickets after his car broke down. He claimed that he and his family were subjected to many alleged unsavory conditions and ordeals during their trip from Tennessee to Connecticut. He also claimed that the bus depots along the way were unsafe, failed to enforce mask mandates and exposed his children to people exhibiting odd behavior. He asserted that this was a violation of the terms that the transportation company promised customers when they purchased tickets, by what is contained on their website and by what their customer service department orally promised over the phone. The plaintiff eventually refused to ride the last leg of the trip and got off in North Carolina. The defense argued that the plaintiff had used the transportation company many times before, had purchased non-refundable tickets and was not permitted to claim emotional damages from a breach of contract claim. They also maintained that, absent provisions in the contract language of the ticket or elsewhere, the company could not be held responsible for breach of any customer travel condition promises that were beyond its control, including unavoidable COVID-19 pandemic issues, which caused limited depot hours, crowding of non-customers into depots, and difficulty with 100% compliance with mask mandate enforcement. The Magistrate ruled for the defendants on the same day as the hearing.