An Irish couple have lost a €75,000 claim against a Dublin restaurant after they were asked by members of staff to pay their bill.
Glen McCarthy and his partner Joanna Walsh had dined at the Harbourmaster Bar and Restaurant in Dublin last January.
After their meal, they stepped outside for a cigarette where they were intercepted by a member of staff and asked to settle their bill.
The couple claimed they had been defamed by the restaurant and took the case to court seeking €75,000 compensation according to a report in the Irish Times.
The judge heard that the couple had left their coats and bags at their table and had been gone for just five minutes when they were approached by a member of staff.
They were asked to come back inside and settle their bill in front of other diners and claimed the restaurant had embarrassed and insulted them.
The couple did go back inside and pay their bill with a €19 voucher and €11 in cash.
The court heard that the restaurant had adopted the approach of asking customers to settle their bills after being victim to numerous dine-and-dash offenders.
The duty manager Michael Brennan had spent 15 minutes with them explaining house policy regarding payment for meals.
The judge ruled in the restaurants favour. He said: “Quite frankly, asking someone to pay for a meal isn’t defamatory and by no stretch of the imagination is there any evidence that they were defamed.”
The couple were to receive no compensation but were not ordered to pay the court costs.
If you would like to take a look at the menus and pictures of the Harbourmaster Bar and Restaurant then visit harbourmaster.ie.