This may ibe the biggest case of ingratitude about which I ever heard: Dr. Richard Batista gave his wife Dawnell one of his kidneys–and then, he says, she cheated on him. Now, as part of the divorce he wants compensation for his lost kidney. From the story:
“There’s no deeper pain you can ever express than to be betrayed by the person you devoted your life to,” he told reporters. “I saved her life but the pain is unbearable.”
The vascular surgeon’s lawyer Dominic Barbara said his client wanted $1.5 million in compensation for the kidney as part of a bitter matrimonial break-up which has dragged on for three years. “As part of the litigation we are asking for the value of the kidney that he gave his wife,” said Mr Barbara. “In theory we are asking for the return of the kidney. Of course, he wouldn’t really ask for that, but the value of it. This has never been done before in the State of New York.”
I completely understand the poor man’s pain, but sorry: A gift is a gift. Legally, once an offered gift is accepted it belongs to the receiver. Besides, compensating him would be to let him, in effect, sell his kidney, which is a big no can do. The judge should commiserate but firmly reject the claim.