A student's laptop was damaged after a fellow rail passenger unexpectedly reclined his seat.
The student, identified as Wang, successfully sued the passenger, identified as Liu, for about $475.
The court ruled that Liu neglected his obligation to tell Wang that he planned to recline his seat.
According to Hunan court documents, a rail passenger in China who reclined his seat without notifying the person sitting behind him must pay damages of about $475.
The complainant — a university student identified in court documents as Wang — was using a newly purchased laptop on a fold-down table on a train to the Chinese city of Wuhan.
Liu was sitting in front of him and reclined his chair, crushing Wang's laptop and leaving lasting damage to the screen.
According to the Xiangyin County People's Court, Liu neglected his obligation to inform Wang that he planned to recline his seat, despite a sign compelling all travelers to "please notify the passengers in the rear row when adjusting your seat angle."
The incident occurred on March 4. Wang alerted police, who initiated discussions, but he and Liu failed to reach a compensation agreement — prompting Wang to sue Liu.
Wang demanded Liu pay him 4,788 yuan to compensate for repair costs, taxis to the repair shop, and disruption to his journey.
This week, the Xiangyin County People's Court ordered Liu to pay Wang 3,341 yuan, or about $475.
This accounts for about 70% of the damages and compensation initially demanded by Wang since the court determined that Wang was 30% responsible for the incident. It determined that he wasn't sufficiently "alert" to the potential consequences of any adjustment to the seat in front of him.
Read the original article on Business Insider