I have written about RICO’s pattern requirement, the bane of so many would be RICO cases. In short, a good RICO case requires showing a pattern of racketeering activity. In plain English this means the bad guy or bad corporation you want to sue has a history of doing bad things- not just to your client. The problem is you might not have evidence of that. But if you can’t show that you can still show a pattern of RICO violations if that is the “regular” way the bad actor does business. What does that mean? It means alleging that the RICO violations will continue into the future.
In most RICO cases the illegal acts have gone on for a while and stopped. But in some cases it is clear that they will continue indefinitely until a court takes action. Here’s an example: your client owns a business which is being subjected to constant posting of negative reviews on Yelp and other such websites by a competitor. The negative reviews falsely state facts about your client like its services are performed by workers who don’t have the necessary training or are paid below the minimum wage. Your client has demanded the competitor stop posting the false accusations, but it keeps on posting. You can then allege that the false posting is a
“regular way” the competitor does business and it will continue.
Courts are skeptical of these allegations, so they need to be specific. That means supplying dates, screen shots, quoting directly, and otherwise making it clear the bad actor is really a bad actor. You have to persuade a judge that your client is not just out for treble damages and attorney’s fees, RICO’s allure. It has a genuine RICO case. This means you know all the elements of a RICO claim and meet them.
When thinking about RICO, think about Foster PC , The Rico AuthorityTM. Let us give you the guidance you need before playing with dynamite. Howard Foster is ready to help you analyze and refine your thinking about potential RICO cases. Give us a call.