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LGS 200, Module 1 Chapter 2 Notes

by: okvincent

LGS 200, Module 1 Chapter 2 Notes LGS 200

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Legal Environment of Buisness
Charlye S. Adams
Class Notes
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This 7 page Class Notes was uploaded by okvincent on Friday August 26, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to LGS 200 at University of Alabama - Tuscaloosa taught by Charlye S. Adams in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 6 views. For similar materials see Legal Environment of Buisness in Business at University of Alabama - Tuscaloosa.


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Date Created: 08/26/16
1 LGS 200­007 Module 1 Notes Chapter 2 1. Judiciary’s role in American govt a. Judicial review i. Established in Marbury vs. Madison (1803) where Chief Marshall wrote: 1. “It is emphatically the province and duty of the judiciary to say what the  law is…”  2. Judiciary interprets laws of the land 3. If you have a state law that contradicts the Constitution we look to the  court system (not the congress). b. Basic Judicial Requirements i. Jurisdiction 1. “Juris” (law) 2. “Diction” (to speak) 3. The power of a court to hear a dispute and to “speak the law” and render  a verdict that is legally binding on the parties to the dispute 4. Jurisdiction over persons or property a. In Personam(person) b. In rem(property) c. Long arm statutes d. Jurisdiction over subject matter e. In personam jurisdiction: gives court power to compel the  presence of the parties to appear before the court and litigate  (look at parties). Book Definition­Court jurisdiction over the  “person” involved in a legal action; personal jurisdiction. i. Plaintiff vs. defendant.  1. A resident of Tuscaloosa County files a law suit  against another Tuscaloosa county resident to  Tuscaloosa county circuit court. Tuscaloosa  country has jurisdiction over that case. 2. Change facts­What if the defendant is not from  Tuscaloosa County? The case can be thrown out  because Tuscaloosa doesn’t have jurisdiction  over the case anymore. f. In Rem jurisdiction­ jurisdiction and power of the court to  decide issues related to property situated within its geographical borders (look at property). Book Definition­Court jurisdiction  over a defendant’s property. i. Plaintiff from Ttown vs. defendant from Orange county  FL fighting over a boat located in Bay county FL 1. The court in Bay County FL has jurisdiction 2 g. Long­Arm Statutes: courts use long­arm statutes for non­ resident parties based on “minimum contacts” with state. Book  definition­A state statute that permits a state to obtain personal  jurisdiction over nonresident defendants. A defendant must have  “minimum contacts” with that state for the statute to apply. i. Est by the International Shoe Co. v. State of Washington (1945). ii. The Shoe Company said that because they were from  Missouri they shouldn’t have to pay taxes Washington.  The Supreme Court had to decide because Shoe Co. said Washington didn’t have jurisdiction over the case. The  Shoe Company lost the case and ended up having to pay  taxes to Washington. iii. Corporate Contacts­corporation advertises or sells  products within a state, or places its goods into the  “stream of commerce” There are sufficient minimum  contacts in that state to be under their jurisdiction and to pay taxes. 5. Jurisdiction over Subject Matter a. Limitation on the types of cases the courts can hear, usually  determined by federal or state statutes. b. General (unlimited) and limited jurisdiction courts i. Usually defined by statute or constitution that created the court.  ii. Limited Jurisdiction­Drug court, Traffic court, Probate  court, Family Court(divorces, adoption, etc), Municipal  Court(traffic tickets, violation of city ordinances, etc),  District Court­smaller cases (Public intoxication, fine  less than $10,000), Federal court­Bankruptcy/ tax cases. iii. General(unlimited) Jurisdiction courts­District  Court(case starts here) on the Federal side(voting,  diversity of citizenship, etc), Circuit Court of Appeals,  US Supreme Court(case ends). State side­circuit  court(start here), circuit court of appeals, state supreme  court(end). c. Original or Appellate Jurisdiction i. Courts of original jurisdiction is where the case started  (trial). Usually District Courts­where evidence is  presented and testimonies are made. Other Ex. Federal­ district trial court, State­circuit trial court and limited  district court.  ii. Courts of appellate jurisdiction have the power to hear  an appeal from another court (supreme court/state,  circuit of appeals). No new evidence, new trial, etc.  6. Jurisdiction of the Federal courts 3 a. Federal Question cases  b. Diversity of Citizenship cases c. “Federal Question” cases in which the rights or obligations of a  party are created or defined by some federal law, treaty, etc. d. “Diversity” of citizenship cases occur when: i. The lawsuit is between residents of (1)different states,  (2) a foreign country and citizens of more than one  states, or (3) citizens of a state and citizens or subjects of a foreign country AND ii. The amount in controversy is greater than $75,000. iii. Remember two different states(plaintiff vs.  defendant) and amount in controversy is greater than $75,000. Once the case is heard in federal court there is  no going back. rd 7. Mala v. Crown Bay Marina, Inc. U.S Court of Appeals, 3  Circuit  (2013). 8. Exclusive vs. Concurrent Jurisdiction a. Federal and state courts have exclusive jurisdiction over certain  types of cases. b. Book definition of exclusive jurisdiction­Jurisdiction that exists when a case can be heard only in a particular court or type of  court, such as a federal court or a state court. c. State Courts may have concurrent jurisdiction. d. Exclusive State Jurisdiction­cases involving all matters not  subject to federal jurisdiction­Ex. Divorce and adoption cases. e. Concurrent Jurisdiction­cases involving federal questions and  diversity of citizenship cases. Book definition­Jurisdiction that  exists when two different courts have the power to hear a case.  For example, some cases can be heard in either a federal or a  state court. f. Exclusive Federal Jurisdiction­Cases involving federal crimes,  federal antitrust law, bankruptcy, patents, copyrights,  trademarks, suits against the United States, some areas of  admiralty law, and certain other matters in federal statutes.  Cannot be heard in state courts. 9. Jurisdiction in Cyberspace a. “Sliding Scale” Standard. When does a court have jurisdiction? b. Three Different types of Contacts i. Substantial business over the internet ii. Some interactivity through a website iii. Passive advertising c. International Jurisdiction issues i. Because the internet is global there are fundamental  issues in international transactions. ii. Gucci America, Inc. V. Wang Huoqing, Northern district of California (2011). U.S. District Court exercised  4 jurisdiction over Chinese defendant who advertised and  sold goods over the internet.                         ii. Venue 1. Venue is concerned with the most appropriate location of the trial 2. Generally, proper venue is whether the injury occurred. 3. Ex. Lease with apartments usually include this. 4. Book Definition­The geographical district in which an action is tried and  from which the jury is selected. iii. Standing to Sue 1. A party must have “standing” to bring a lawsuit. 2. Book Definition­The requirement that an individual must have a  sufficient stake in a controversy before he or she can bring a lawsuit. The plaintiff must demonstrate that he or she either has been injured or has  been threatened with injury. 3. Elements to prove standing a. Harm b. Causation  c. Remedy 4. Ex. A, B, and C have a car accident. B is the only one that suffered injury and damage to car. B is the only one that has standing to sue. If B is a  minor, next of kin has standing to sue(parent/guardian). Money would go to trust fund for benefit of child or estate. c. State Court Systems i. Trial Courts 1. Limited Jurisdiction a. Municipal Courts b. District/Small Claims Courts c. Probate Courts d. Drug Courts 2. General Jurisdiction a. Civil  b. Criminal 3. Appellate, or Reviewing, Courts a. Make decisions based on questions of law, not fact. b. Can either affirm (uphold) or reverse (overturn) lower court’s  opinion. c. No new information/evidence is viewed, just reviews case to  see if law was upheld. ii. Highest state courts 1. Each state has at least one Supreme Court. 2. Decisions are final, only when federal issues involved can U.S. Supreme  Court overturn. d. Federal Court System i. U.S. District Courts 1. Trial courts in the federal system. 2. Today there are ninety­four judicial districts. ii. U.S. Court of Appeal 5 1. Thirteen U.S. Circtht Courts of Appeals. 2. Alabama s the 11  circuit iii. United States Supreme Court 1. The two most fundamental ways to have your case heard in a supreme  court are:  a. State Courts: Appeals of Right b. U.S. Supreme Court: By Writ of Certiorari i. Writ of Certiorari­conformation from Supreme court  saying they will hear your case. Book Definition­A writ  from a higher court asking the lower court for the record  of a case. e. Judicial Procedures: Following a State Court Case i. American courts follow the ‘adversarial’ system of justice. ii. Procedural Rules. iii. Stages of Litigation: pre­trial, trial, and post­trial. iv. Consulting with an Attorney 1. Will discuss expectations of the case, probability of success, time and  cost estimates, advantages/disadvantages of a particular court. 2. Types of Attorneys’ Fees. a. Fixed rate or not fixed(hourly) rate b. Hourly rate­the attorney WILL bill you for whatever amount of  time they spend speaking with you whether it be in person or via  email/phone call. Usually charge in six minute increments. c. Contingency fees i. If you win your case you have to pay lawyers a fixed  rate plus a percentage of your rewards. ii. If you lose your case you don’t have to pay anything 3. Settlement Considerations. v. Pre­Trial: The Pleadings. 1. Plaintiff’s Complaint (you have to say if you want a jury trial or a bench  trial­where the judge decides). 2. Service of Process. a. Method of Service: can be personal or publishing in the  newspaper. b. Waiver of Formal/Service. 3. Defendant’s answer a. This is to admit or deny all of the allegations made against them. b. They have 30 days to file an answer.  c. If no answer is filed within 30 days, the plaintiff automatically  wins the case. vi. Pre­Trial: Dismissals and Judgements before Trial. 1. Motion: procedural legal request ruled on by judge. Book Definition­A  procedural request or application presented by an attorney to the court on behalf of a client. 2. Pre­Trial Motions a. Motion to Dismiss­the plaintiff’s claim is not backed up by the  law. Book Definition­A pleading in which a defendant asserts  6 that the plaintiff’s claim fails to state a cause of action (that is,  has no basis in law) or that there are other grounds on which a  suit should be dismissed. b. Motion for Judgement on the Pleadings i. Not fighting over the facts­when you apply the law, the  law favors me, and therefore I should automatically win  the case ii. Book Definition­A motion by either party to a lawsuit at  the close of the pleadings requesting the court to decide  the issue solely on the pleadings without proceeding to  trial. The motion will be granted only if no facts are in  dispute iii. Cannot use evidence. Only pleadings and other  documents from the court. c. Motion for Summary Judgement i. Not fighting over the facts­when you apply the law, the  law favors me, and therefore I should automatically win  the case. ii. Book Definition­A motion requesting the court to enter a judgment without proceeding to trial. The motion can be  based on evidence outside the pleadings and will be  granted only if no facts are in dispute iii. Can use evidence vii. Pre­Trial: Motion to Dismiss 1. If the court grants a motion to dismiss, generally the lawsuit is over 2. Espresso Disposition Corp. 1 V. Santan Sales and Marketing Group, Inc.  (2013). viii. Discovery 1. Depositions and Interrogatories(written questions­max of 40) a. Despositions­The testimony of a party to a lawsuit or a witness  taken under oath before a trial. b. Interrogatories­A series of written questions for which written  answers are prepared and then signed under oath by a party to a  lawsuit, usually with the assistance of the party’s attorney. Max  of 40 questions. 2. Request for Documents(Ex. Hospital malpractice cases) 3. Requests for Admission 4. Electronic Discovery a. E­discovery procedures b. Advantages and Disadvantages ix. Pre­Trial Conference 1. Informal discussion between the judge and opposing counsel a. Explore the possibility of a settlement, or b. Identify the real issues in dispute, and plan the course of the trial. x. Jury Selection 1. Trials can be with or without a jury (bench trial) 7 2. Voir Dire­ (“to see, to speak”) ­the process in which the attorneys  question prospective jurors to determine whether they are biased or have any connection with a party to the action or with a prospective witness. 3. Either attorney can ‘challenge’ a juror and ask they not be sworn in as  juror 4. In Alabama there is a 12 panel jury with 2 alternates. xi. At the Trial 1. Opening arguments(summary of what is going to be proved) 2. Plaintiff’s Case in Chief a. Direct(plaintiff questions their own witness to establish  character/credibility), cross(defendant questions witness based  on what was asked during the direct examination to try to  discredit witness), re­direct, re­cross examination of the  Plaintiff’s witnesses. b. For direct examination the witness already knows the questions  they are going to be asked. 3. Defense Motion for a Directed Verdict 4. Defense Case in Chief a. Direct, cross, re­direct and re­cross examination of the Plaintiff’s witnesses. 5. At the Trial a. Closing Arguments and Awards. 6. Posttrial Motions a. Deliberation by jury b. Motion for New Trial(jurors were biased) c. Motion for J.N.O.V(Jury got it wrong) 7. The Appeal a. Filing the Appeal­parties file briefs pointing out (or opposing)  reversible error that require reversal of the trial court’s verdict. b. Appellate Review­courts do not consider new evidence. Only  consider briefs and evidence presented at trial. c. Appeal to a Higher Court­writ of certiorari 8. Enforcing the Judgement a. Writ of Execution­directs sheriff to seize defendant’s non­ exempt property (or belongings they can live without) and sell  them to pay for judgement.  b. Availability of Assets: usually a plaintiff looks to see if the  defendant has sufficient assets before the suit is filed.


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