I have a hypothetical legal question. I guess Canadian answers would be most interesting, but since it’s hypothetical I don’t mind answers from any legal jurisdiction.
2012 is getting closer and closer. Let’s say I end up with a neighbour that fervently believes that the world will end in 2012. I tell her that the fact that the long Aztec calendar ends in 2012 has no more relevance to the end of the world than the fact that the modern Christian calendar ends on December 31 of every year; however she stubbornly insists that 2012 will mark the end of the world.
OK - I decide she’s being a pest and I retaliate by suggesting a few times that she give me all of her money because she’s not going to need it and that extreme generosity will certainly help guarantee her a place in Heaven. Amazingly, I actually manage to persuade her to do so.
Along comes New Years Day 2013. She is destitute and because I am not particularly considerate of idiots (remember, this is a hypothetical situation :D) I refuse to return her money.
Can she sue me successfully? On what grounds? There have been other more localized end-of-the-world beliefs in the past (didn’t Jehovah’s Witnesses predict the EOW a few times?) Has this scenario ever made it to court in the past?