November 10 Briefs and Notes

November 10 Briefs and Notes - November 10, 2008 Parker v....

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Parker v. Twentieth Century-Fox Film Corp . Supreme Court of California, 1970 Law: Facts: Plaintiff Shirley MacLaine Parker (hereinafter referred to as Parker) contracted with the film company, Twentieth Century Fox (hereinafter referred to as Fox) to play the female lead in a musical motion picture entitled “Bloomer Girl.” Parker would have been able to use her talents as both a dancer and an actress in the movie and was to be paid $750,000 for the part. Prior to the start of filming, Fox informed Parker that they would not be producing Bloomer Girl. As compensation, Fox offered Parker the lead in a dramatic western entitled “Big Country, Big Man” (hereinafter referred to as Big Country) for the same amount of money - $750,000. Parker was given one week to accept and she refused. Parker then sought recovery of agreed upon compensation. Reasoning: The general rule is that the measure of recovery by a wrongfully discharged employee is the amount of salary agreed upon for the period of service, less the amount which the employer affirmatively proves the employee has earned or with reasonable effort might have earned from other employment. However, before projected earnings from other employment opportunities not sought or accepted by the discharged employee can be applied in mitigation, the employer must show that the other employment was comparable, or substantially similar, to that of which the employee has been deprived; the employee’s rejection of or failure to seek other available employment of a different or inferior kind may not be resorted to in order to mitigate damages. Issue: Was the job that Fox offered Parker in Big Country comparable employment and was Parker obligated to accept to mitigate damages? Procedure: The trial court granted summary judgment to Parker. Fox appealed. Holding: No. Parker did not fail to mitigate damages by refusing to accept the part in Big Country, as the role was not comparable to that of Bloomer Girl. The California Supreme Court affirms the trial court’s summary judgment. Judge Sullivan dissents. Notes from the Case: General rule: wrongfully discharged employee is the amount of salary agreed upon for the period of service, less the amount which the employer affirmatively proves the employee has earned or with reasonable effort might have earned from other employee. If you go work, they deduct that money you earned. This movie was not comprisable to the new movie they were offering her. If you are an employee that was wrongfully discharged you are entitled to your contract less mitigation damages, like getting another job or comparable job opportunities. Problem 74 : Night time teaching could be a supplement and not substitute employment. 4. Damages by Agreement/Liquidated Damages
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November 10 Briefs and Notes - November 10, 2008 Parker v....

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