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Week 1 Notes

by: Hannah Watts

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About this Document

These notes cover important terms and info given in BLAW. Material is good to study for test.
Kim Petrone
Class Notes
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This 4 page Class Notes was uploaded by Hannah Watts on Tuesday August 30, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to 2013 at 1 MDSS-SGSLM-Langley AFB Advanced Education in General Dentistry 12 Months taught by Kim Petrone in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 3 views. For similar materials see BLAW in Business at 1 MDSS-SGSLM-Langley AFB Advanced Education in General Dentistry 12 Months.


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Date Created: 08/30/16
BLAW­ 8/23/16 Criminal Law ● Two elements required for a crime: ● 1. Mens Rea­ the wrong(culpable­somebody who will be held responsible) mind.  ○ Exceptions: strict liability crimes where no mens rea requirements, only forbidden act ● 2. Actus Reus­ the forbidden act ● Strict Liability crime­ intent does not matter only actus reus (pollution) ● Law­ binding rule ● Common law­ based on judicial opinions (judicial decisions are law) ● Civil law­ judges can’t make laws (core principles are codified into referable  system(easily referenced) which serves as primary source of law) ○ Used in about 150 countries (Napoleonic Code) ○ European countries, Latin America, Louisiana ○ Other ex: Sharia law Classifications of Law ● Criminal law vs. Civil law ● Civil: plaintiff v. defendant ○ Almost exclusively money damages ● Criminal: state, city country v. someone (prosecutor)  ○ Has imprisonment/ fine/ death penalty ○ Has to be proven beyond a reasonable doubt ○ Never proven innocent just proven “not guilty” BLAW 8/30/16 ● On matters of state law, the state courts are supreme ● Ex: State v. Brown, Arkansas Supreme court ● “Stare decisis”­ let the decision stand Ch.2 Civil Litigation ● Civil courts have “open door” policy which occasionally leads to “frivolous  lawsuits” ● Only in criminal court are you appointed an attorney, civil cases you must hire  one Steps in Civil Case ● 1. Complaint file­ plaintiff files the complaint ● 2. Service of process­ formal notice to the defendant that they have been sued ● 3. Defendant files answer ● 4. Discovery and pre­trial phase­  ○ Request for production(emails, electronic data, physical things) ○ Depositions­ sworn oral testimony ○ Interrogatories­ written questions to the other side(defense) ○ Discovery phase can take months ● 5. Trial  ● 6. Appeals  3 instances when a judge decides a case ● Summary judgement­ pre­trial ● Direct A Verdict­ plaintiff doesn’t bring enough evidence and judge instructs jury  to rule for defendant. Happens in middle of case after plaintiffs case ● JNOV­ happens at the end of the trial and judge says jury is incorrect ● Compensatory Damages­ amount awarded for the damages caused (medical  bills, pain and suffering) ● Degree of negligence­ if the plaintiff is somewhat liable, jury may reduce dollar  amount of compensatory damages ● Punitive damages­ rare, when they do happen it’s in a tort case NOT a contract  case ○ Amount of money to “punish” the defendant Tort Reform ● Gives congress the power to limit things awarded to plaintiff BLAW 8/25/16 Burden of proof in a civil case: What is the standard? ● By a preponderance of the evidence ○ “Damages” indicates civil case Double Jeopardy ● “Nor shall any person be subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy  of life or limb…” 5th amendment, U.S. Constitution ● 1. New evidence is discovered just after the jury’s “not guilty” verdict? Can the  prosecution “try again”? NO. ● 2. Can the prosecution call it something else? For example, if a person was  found “not guilty” of rape, can he be prosecuted for “assault and battery?” NO. ● 3. Can he be prosecuted by another sovereign? For example, if the state of  Georgia prosecutes someone for attempting to take the life of a federal judge, and the  defendant is found “not guilty,” can he be prosecuted by the United States? YES. ○ Double jeopardy prevents a single sovereign from trying a case  twice. ● 4. Can someone who is found “not guilty” in criminal court be sued in civil court?  YES. Sources of Law(hierarchy)  ● Constitutions ● Legislation(passed by elected officials) aka statutory law ● Administrative regulations ● Executive Orders ● Case law(aka common law)  Constitution Law ● Applies to State/ Federal cases ● Does the Constitution even apply to a situation? ○ Answer depends on who the defendant is­­the doctrine of “state  action.” ● State Action(government..who pays the paychecks) ○ DEA breaks down your dorm door and searches your closet ○ City of Chicago passes ordinance banning handguns ● Not State Action ○ Wal­Mart forbids in store protests ○ Boys & Girls club hosts Jewish holiday celebration Legislation(statutory law)  ● Federal(passed by Congress..”U.S. code”) ● State(passed by the state legislatures) ● Local(passed by local or city government..”ordinances”) ● Uniform Laws­ National Conference of Commissioners on Uniform State Laws  (NCCUSL) ○ Uniform Commercial Code(regulated checks, bank drafts, child  support) essentially regulates commerce 3.Administrative Law 4.Executive Law 5.Case Law William Marbury v. James Madison, 1803 ● Established judicial review ○ Says that the judiciary has the power to overturn acts of congress/ president/ administrative agencies if the judiciary finds that it is unconstitutional. Precedent ● An appellate opinion which is binding law on subsequent similar cases in the  same jurisdiction ○ Page 44 distinguishes trial court and appellate courts ○ Trial court decisions are NOT precedent. 1.Trial Court­ evidence introduced and briefing, party losing on an issue may appeal. 2. Intermediate court of appeals­ no new evidence, just consider trial evidence aka “the record”;  briefing and sometimes attorney argument allowed; party losing on an issue may appeal 3. Highest Court of appeals­ final decision, non­appealable Different states do not have to follow other states precedents.  Arkansas is in 8th circuit


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