MIAMI – Get it in writing. A court order from U.S. District Judge Federico Moreno for the Southern District of Florida on April 20 dismisses a case against a seller of electric scooters.
The court, however, is giving the plaintiff leave to amend parts of the seven-count complaint, which includes allegations of torturous interference, civil theft, unlawful conversion and violation of the deceptive and unfair trade practices act, as well as unfair competition, deformation and unjust enrichment.
Plaintiff Jean Paul is the president of I Ride 4 Me Inc. The defendant, William Norwood or “Ray J,” operates two other scooter companies, Raytroniks Inc. and Raging Cajun, selling the “scoot e bike” model.
Paul alleges Norwood agreed to become an investor and “celebrity endorser” of I Ride 4 Me Inc. models, with a deal allegedly finalized in November 2015.
A lack of signed written documents is a problem in this case – the court notes that Florida law does not allow for “theft of ideas” without “written proof.”
At one point in the complaint, lawyers describe a staged photo with both the plaintiff and defendant extending their thumbs upward in implicit approval of the deal.
Moreno wrote that “plaintiffs grossly mischaracterize the photo, as Norwood appears to be pointing his index finger at the camera, not giving a thumbs-up.”
"Plaintiffs need to let it go because a photo is not a formal invite to be bound by the terms of a contract, much less satisfy a statute that requires a writing," wrote Moreno.