I am a big fan of the Oxford comma, so I zeroed in on this case. In O'Connor v. Oakhurst Dairy, the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit addressed the scope of an exemption from Maine's overtime law for dairy delivery drivers. The relevant part of the Maine statute provides that:
the protection of the overtime law does not apply to: The canning, processing, preserving, freezing, drying, marketing, storing, packing for shipment or distribution of:
(1) Agricultural produce; (2) Meat and fish products; and (3) Perishable foods.
The key phrase being "packing for shipment or distribution." The dairy drivers argued that this should be interpreted as a single event. Oakhurst Dairy countered that, at the end of a list, these were two distinct exemptions from the law. The Court ruled in favor of the drivers finding that the statutory language was ambiguous for lack of an Oxford comma.
I've added Weird Al Yankovic's take on the Oxford comma below. Enjoy!
Note: Judge Barron eloquently kicks off the decision with: "For want of a comma, we have this case."