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Woman who sued New Jersey country club over wine spilled on $30K Hermès handbag continues legal fight

USA TODAY logo USA TODAY 8/6/2020 Ricardo Kaulessar, NorthJersey.com
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The woman suing a New Jersey country club after a club waiter spilled wine on her luxury handbag is not backing down, even after her case was dismissed by a Bergen County Superior Court judge.

In the lawsuit filed last November that attracted local and national media attention, Maryana Beyder said she was enjoying a meal at the Alpine Country Club in Demarest in September 2018 when a waiter spilled red wine on the pink Hermès handbag that she said costs approximately $30,000.

a house in the middle of a road: Alpine Country Club in Demarest, N.J. on Thursday Nov. 14, 2019. © Tariq Zehawi and John Meore USA Today Network Alpine Country Club in Demarest, N.J. on Thursday Nov. 14, 2019.

The lawsuit was dismissed July 24 by Judge Estela De La Cruz after Kenneth Merber, the attorney representing the club, said Beyder and her husband failed to appear at depositions despite notices and a subpoena. He also told the judge she didn't cooperate with the discovery process. 

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However, the judge dismissed the case “without prejudice,” which allowed Beyder’s attorney, Alexandra Errico, to file a motion to reinstate the suit this week.

Opinion: We should be embarrassed by the lawsuits over the $30K handbag at Alpine Country Club

In her filing, Errico refuted Merber’s reasons for dismissal, saying that her office had sent Merber on July 9 her client’s answers for discovery along with "two expert reports and email exchange" between Alpine Country Club President David Graf and Beyder. Errico did not respond to a request for comment from NorthJersey.com, which is part of the USA TODAY Network.

A decision on Errico’s motion to reinstate the lawsuit is scheduled for Aug. 28

In an interview with NorthJersey.com last year, Errico said the lawsuit, which blamed the unidentified waiter and the country club for "negligent hiring" of the waiter, came about after Beyder spent nearly a year trying to resolve the issue directly with the country club.

"They couldn't comprehend that a bag could be that much. I think that was the biggest problem with that. They kind of discriminated against her that she actually owned that type of bag,” Errico said.

Hermès handbags are often priced in the tens of thousands, with one sold in Hong Kong in 2017 for $377,000, breaking the world record for the most expensive bag sold at auction.

Merber did not return a phone call for comment from NorthJersey.com. A phone message left at the Alpine Country Club was not returned.

Ricardo Kaulessar is a local reporter for NorthJersey.com.  Email: kaulessar@northjersey.com Twitter: @ricardokaul 

This article originally appeared on NorthJersey.com: Woman who sued New Jersey country club over wine spilled on $30K Hermès handbag continues legal fight

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