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This 2 page Class Notes was uploaded by Lexie Barclay on Tuesday September 6, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to BLAW at University of Arkansas taught by John Norwod in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 12 views.
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Date Created: 09/06/16
BLAW Notes Ch. 2 August 29, 2016 ● No screening process up front (anyone can file a lawsuit) ○ OPEN DOOR POLICY in civil court ○ Occasionally leads to “frivolous lawsuits” ■ EX: 2001 former state senator sued in federal court to have his daughter put on the Central Cheer squad ■ EX: Koch VS Adams student sues teacher for confiscation of cell phone ■ EX: Stella Liebeck VS MacDonalds ● Coffee WAS too hot & she won $2.9 million 1. 9095% of lawsuits filed are settled outside of court 2. In a civil lawsuit, each side has a right to know the witnesses and evidence used by the opposite side a. DISCOVERY: you (the plaintiff) have a right to know what witnesses and evidence that the other other side may produce b. DEPOSITION: each side may interrogate potential witnesses; both sides lawyer & court reporters are there i. Taken prior to trial ii. Rules of purgery apply iii. Witness must then take the stand in court 3. PRIMARYcompensatory damages compensate for $$$, pain & suffering, and loss of income ● COMPARATIVE NEGLEGANCE: party A is __% at fault and party B __% at fault) ● Punitive damages may be awarded due to extreme negligence ● TORT REFORM: general term associated in some states (not all) in efforts to reduce number of frivoulous lawsuits ● IN A CIVIL CASE, the trial court judge can change the verdict ○ EX: judge threw out $2 million & rewarded $650,000 ○ Settled out of court for $500,000 ● POINT TWO: americans do not file an unusually large number of law suits compared to other wealthy democracies COMPENSATORY DAMAGES: to compensate for suffereing, loss of income, etc PUNITIVE DAMAGES: punish defendant A. ADVERSARY SYSTEM: civil cases VS criminal cases a. Obligation to represent defendant/plaintiff with enthusiasm b. Can’t present untrue evidence c. “Rules of ethics” can not make an argument they know is frivilous B. METHOD OF PAYMENT: a. Defendant’s lawyer: hourly b. Plaintiff’s lawyer: contingency (30% or even higher) (if they lose, no pay) C. One way to reduce litigation: use the contingency rule Another Way>the “loser pay” rule: plaintiff sues defendant and loses, plaintiff must pay defendant’s legal expenses ● AR uses this rule: breach of contract cases only ● Discouraging frivilous lawsuits: “Rule 11”
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