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BMGT 380 Study Guide - Midterm Guide: Bench Trial, False Light, Concurrent Jurisdiction

Business and Management
Course Code
BMGT 380
William Mc Clenahan
Study Guide

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CL: based on precedents (decisions of other judges in similar cases) later became stare decisis (“let the decision stand” like cases should be decided alike)
more specific CL controls over tension between general CL and specific CL
Legal reasoning: basically deductive; intent of legislature is by their inaction, not their action
When a precedent has been properly distinguished (present case finds meaningful difference between present and CL case, the court rids of earlier decision) the CL rule it stated no longer rules the
present case; no two sets of facts are exactly the same
Statutory interpretation: Plain meaning (clear accepted meaning, courts should apply the statute according to the usual meaning of the words) Legislative History (ambiguous language, don’t use plain
meaning and may use legislative history to determine what the specific meaning of the statutory language is) Legislative purpose (determine the overall aim, goal of the legislation/if the statute is
consistent with the legislative purpose) General public purpose (widely accepted notions of general PP) Prior interpretations (promote stability and create certainty by preventing each successive case
from adopting their own interpretations) Maxims: general rules of thumb employed in statutory interpretation
Ejusdem generis: general words follow words of a specific limited meaning, general language should be limited to things of the same class as those specifically stated
Order of state courts: trial courts (find relevant facts, reach decisions, can be appealed) appellate courts (look at findings from trial court and decide legal questions/ accept trial court’s findings of fact)
State Supreme Court
Order of federal courts: Us District (determine both facts and the law; fact finding function is up to judge/jury, determining the applicable law is up to judge) federal court of appeals (do not engage in fact
finding, review legal decisions reached by lower federal courts)
US Supreme Court: highest court, mainly an appellate court; granted certiorari judgment: has discretion whether to hear cases or not. Validity of any treaty or federal statute, any state statute is
challenged by federal law, any title, right or privilege is claimed under federal law.
Original jurisdiction: acts as a trial court; has original and exclusive jurisdiction over all controversies between 2+ states, original not exclusive jurisdiction over cases involving state proceedings against a
citizen of another state or against aliens
Jurisdiction: in order to have a binding decision in a civil case, a court must have subject matter jurisdiction & inpersonam jurisdiction (based on residence, location, activities of the defendant; must meet
minimum contacts; long arm statutes: designed to give courts inpersonam jurisdiction over out of state defendants; specific: cause of action must arise out of or be related to the defendants contact with
the forum state, general: if the defendant has engaged in continuous general business contacts with the forum state) diversity jurisdiction: 1. Case is between citizens of different states 2. Amount in
controversy exceeds 75,000) concurrent jurisdiction: give both state and federal courts jurisdiction over the case (defendant can move the case to a federal court after plaintiff moves the case to a state
court) Venue: questions of venue arise only after jurisdiction is assumed/established
Civil Procedure To win a civil case the plaintiff has the burden of proof to prove a preponderance of the evidence (quality over quantity)
Summons (notify defendant he is being sued) Pleadings (parties file to state claims) Affirmative defense (defendant wins even if plaintiff proves otherwise) Counterclaim (lawsuit within a lawsuit)
Notice pleadings: notify parties of general issues in a case Motion to dismiss (if it is evident that plaintiff does not have sufficient evidence to have a valid claim. grounds: inadequate service of process of
defendant/defendant lacks minimum contacts with forum state) Motion for judgment on the pleadings/Demurrer (“So What?” to factual allegations in complaint; plaintiff cannot recover even if all his
allegations are true because no rule of law allows him to win on those facts) Discovery (obtain facts and narrow/clarify issues for trial) Deposition (oral exam of other party/witness)
Motion for summary judgment: if there is no genuine issue of material fact and moving party is entitled to judgment as a matter of law
Summary judgment: disposing of relatively clear cases; moving party must show that there is no genuine issue of material fact and that he/she is entitled to judgment as a matter of law
The Trial: bench trial: before a judge, jury trial: amounts greater than $20; preemptory challenges: allowed to dismiss potential jurors with no reasoning; general verdict (jury declares who wins/amount
rewarded, special verdict: jury presents written findings of fact for the judge, directed verdict: takes case away from jury before they come to a decision, left up to the judge
Motion for directed verdict: after plaintiff makes his case, defendant can make notion to end plaintiff’s case; moving party loses if 1. There is any legally binding evidence favoring nonmoving party 2.
Substantial evidence favoring nonmoving party
Motion for judgment notwithstanding the verdict: made by losing party after an adverse jury verdict at the end of the trial
Motion for a new trial: at end of trial; misconduct by judge, jurors, attorneys, witnesses, new discovery of evidence, legal errors in rewarding damages)
Class actions: provides justice for large number of widespread people; if there are questions of law and fact common to all members of the class, if they can adequately represent without biased or
Tort: intent, recklessness, negligence, strict liability (without fault) Compensatory (recovers harm plaintiff suffered) Punitive (designed to punish wrongdoers and deter them)
Battery: intention and harmful infliction or offensive touching without consent; intent required: to cause harmful/offensive contact 2. To cause apprehension that contact is imminent. There cannot be
consent for battery in order to sue Transferred intent: meant to shoot one person, shot someone else, still liable for injury
Assault: necessary intent and apprehension of a harmful/offensive contact (must be imminent/immediate, at time of battery, reasonable indicating intent to carry out the threat
Intentional infliction of emotional distress: 1. Defendant’s conduct was intentional or reckless 2. Was so outrageous that it cannot be tolerated by a civil society 3. Resulted in serious mental injury to the
plaintiff False imprisonment (intentional confinement, must be complete with no reliable means to escape, must have knowledge of, no liability if there is consent) Conditional privilege (storeowners to be
able to reasonably hold suspected shoplifters) Defamation (unprivileged, publication of, false and defamatory, statements concerning another; truth is an absolute defense)
Slander: oral, must prove actual damages except in moral turpitude/false imprisonment, loathsome disease, professionally incompetent/guilty of professional misconduct, serious sexual misconduct
Libel: written/permanent: damages are presumed Not held liable (fictional accounts, satirical, opinion, targeting groups (large vs. small), distributor or user of interactive content)
Held liable if you are the author/published (had control over what was said/printed) Absolute privilege (legal proceedings) Conditional privilege (employment references)
Invasion of privacy: intrusion on solitude (reasonable expectation of privacy; mail/phone tapping) public disclosure of private facts (failure to pay debts) false light publicity (depicting in an untrue way)
commercial appropriation (endorsing a product without consent Liability for fraud (requires proof of a false statement of material fact recklessly made by defendant with intent to deceive the plaintiff and
actual justifiable and detrimental reliance on the part of the plaintiff) Trespass to land (unauthorized/unprivileged intentional intrusion to another’s real property; intent required is intent to be on the land or
cause it to be invaded) Conversion (intentional control of plaintiffs property (acquisition, removal, transfer, withholding, destruction, alteration) Negligence (defendant owed a duty of care to the plaintiff,
breached this duty of care (requires proof that defendant failed to act as a reasonable person would have acted) and the breach was the actual (but for) and the proximate (legal) cause of the plaintiff’s
injury) Foreseeability (function of knowledge of defendant of consequence of his behavior or question of closeness) Special duties (doctors, innkeepers to exercise care to protect patrons from
foreseeable harm from 3rd partied) Duties to persons on property (invitees (relating to business) licensees (not pertaining to business but allowed in) trespassers (only a duty to not willfully and wantonly
injure after presence has been known) Negligence per se (if both are fulfilled (within the class of persons intended to be protected by statute and suffered harm that the statute was intended to protect
against) Causation of injury (defendant’s breach was the actual (but for) and the proximate (legal) cause of plaintiffs injury; it would not have happened if the defendant would not have done the injury
causing behavior ) Actual cause (but for test: the plaintiff would not have been hurt had it not been for the defendants breach of duty) Proximate cause: assume the existence of actual, natural and
probable cause of the act of negligence; concerns the required degree of the closeness between the defendants breach and the injury it actually caused; liable only for the natural and probable causes of
his actions/ limited a breaching defendants unforeseeable harms by stating that he is liable only to plaintiffs who were within the scope of the foreseeable risk- proximate cause test determines whether
the duty element of a negligence claim exists (owes no duty to those who are not foreseeable victims of his act)/ a defendants breach of duty is not the proximate cause of a plaintiffs injury if looking back
after the harm it appears highly extraordinary to the court that the breach would have brought about the injury The imposition and scope of a legal duty is dependent not only on foreseeability but also the
magnitude of risk involved in defendants conduct, the burden of requiring defendant to guard against that risk, the consequences of placing the burden upon the defendant Later act (foreseeable- will not
relieve of liability/unforeseeable- intervening/superseding cause, breaks chain and is no longer held liable) In nonpremises cases: violent acts don’t break the chain between original defendants and injury
Special rules: supersedes the proximate and intervening cause rules; persons who are negligent “take their victims as they find them”- liable for the full extent of her victims injuries if those injuries are
aggravated by preexisting physical susceptibility of the victim even though it could not be foreseen Res ipsa loquitur: “ the thing speaks for itself” can use this if you can prove defendant had exclusive
control of harm, harm would not occur in absence of negligence and plaintiff was in no way responsible for his own injuries Negligence defenses: contributory (only in 5 states) comparative (modern view-
courts seek to determine the relative negligence of parties and reward damages in proportion to degrees of negligence determined; plaintiffs recovery=defendants percentage share of negligence causing
the injury x plaintiffs proven damages Assumption of risk: do some course of conduct where you assume risk in consenting to a known danger/dangerous activity
Strict liability: liability without fault, or irrespective of fault; social policy decision that the risk associated with an activity should be borne by those who pursue it, rather than by innocent people who are
exposed to that risk. Premised on the defendants voluntary decision to engage in a particularly risky activity (trespassing livestock or keepers of dangerous wild animals)
State supreme courts in MD are the highest court in the state and: they are the final authority on questions of their state law & they no not make findings of fact
Which would occur the earliest in a civil case? Defendant files a counterclaim The legal remedies that are available to defendant in a civil case include: none of the above (compensatory & punitive, assumption of risk & comparative
negligence, damages, injunction & specific performance, motion for directed verdict and notion for judgment notwithstanding the verdict/judgment n.o.v., binding or nonbinding arbitration Statutes of limitation specify the minimum
amount of time that the plaintiff has to file a lawsuit: False Homers car crosses yellow line, hit a telephone pole and resulted in a power outage. Patty tried to walk in the dark, tripped and fell and is injured. Homers best defense is
that: Patty’s harm was not a reasonably foreseeable consequence/result of Homer’s breach of duty/ there is no proximate cause In a pure comparative negligence state, a plaintiff will recover something (provided he proves his case)
even if plaintiffs negligence was 50% or more responsible for his injury. This is the rule in a majority of jurisdictions in the US: False (first half is true, second half is false; pure is only in a dozen states, most states are mixed system
As a general matter, appellate courts accept the findings of fact of trial courts and confine their review to legal questions decided by the lower courts: true In civil litigation, plaintiff has the burden of proof of proving that her claim is
supported by a preponderance of the evidence: true During deposition in a civil lawsuit (contract dispute) the plaintiff states everybody knows buildings made by him or her are the worst. The defendant wants to sue for libel/slander,
he will: lose since the statement is protected by an absolute privilege Which of the following is part of (immediately after) the discover process/stage of a lawsuit: a request to take a witness deposition & a motion for summary
judgment Steve detects Joan of shoplifting, Joan sues alleging false imprisonment. Steve may be liable if: Joan was detained for an unreasonable period of time
A court would exercise personal jurisdiction over Netresults (incorporated and principle place of business in CA) if: they conducted substantial business with MD users through its website which had significant levels on interactivity
Judge orders the defendant to turn over the painting to john, example of what type of remedy? Specific performance
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