Small-business groups are hailing the decision of a Washington D.C. superior court judge to dismiss a $50 million lawsuit against a local family-owned dry cleaners over a lost pair of pants.

Roy Pearson, an administrative judge, had sued Custom Cleaners for losing his pants and violating consumer protection laws. This week, the court ruled that Pearson failed to prove his case and awarded court costs to the shop owners.

Karen Harned, the executive director of the National Federation of Independent Business Legal Foundation, called the decision a victory for small businesses against frivolous lawsuits.

"The reality is that small businesses do not have attorneys on staff to fight these lawsuits," Harned said, adding that as a result owners were easy targets for "unscrupulous lawyers."   

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