Class 10 (Lawsuits and Ethics)

Class 10 (Lawsuits and Ethics) - BUS 320 Business Law...

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BUS 320 Business Law Spring 2011 Jordan Breslow Class 10 TOPICS FOR THIS CLASS Legal dispute resolution Traditional approach: Demand letters Cease and Desist letters Litigation Settlement or Trial The Process of a Trial Alternative approaches: Informal resolution Mediation Arbitration Mock Trial Other Ethics in legal disputes Ulterior motives for lawsuits Conduct during dispute resolution Impact of litigation on society Role of attorneys and attorneys fees Privacy ethics Terminology Ethical Litigation Mediation Arbitration Plaintiff Defendant Pleadings Complaint Cross-Complaint Answer 1
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Motion Discovery Spoliation Ethical What does it mean? “If it is legal, then it is ethical” – discuss Dispute Resolution Common disputes Contract breach Intellectual property Employer – employee Product defect Traditional Approaches Demand letter Filing suit – Civil Trial Do you have a viable case? (Flip side: do you have a viable defense? Can you deny what you know is true, e.g., the existence of a contract?) Frivolous lawsuits Example: Pearson v. Chung, page 43 Example: Kraft Miracle Whip Costs of defense lawsuits Assume there is a corrugated box manufacturing company that is owned 40% by the company’s chief salesman, 40 % owned by the plant manager, who is also the President, and 20% owned by the other employees via an ESOP plan. Further the company has an appraised value of $1,000,000. This value being mostly determined by the company’s book of business rather than its plant and equipment. One day the chief salesman announces he is joining a competitor and wants to sell his 40% ownership interest and thinks his interest is worth 40% of $1,000,000. There are some conversations with some employees but 2
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no agreement is reached. The plant manager and the other employees point out that his departure will put the company in a difficult situation; they say it is impossible to determine what his stock is worth until the company is stabilized perhaps in year or two. The chief salesman realizes that the value of the company is going to drop as he gets more and more customers to switch their business to his new employer, so he visits with three different lawyers to inquire about his options. The first lawyer points out that he really doesn’t have a case against anyone and advises him to hope that his former employer prospers so his stock increases in value. The second lawyer says that if he is willing to testify that the conversations he had about selling his stock had risen to the level of an oral contract then he could sue for breach of contract and compel his old business associates to buy his stock at the $400,000 price; this lawyer further advises that the case is very weak since it involves an oral rather than a written contract, but the case might induce the other side to settle for $15,000 or $20,000. The third lawyer suggests the same breach of contract lawsuit that lawyer number two suggested but he goes further and suggests that additional counts be added to raise the cost of defense and
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This note was uploaded on 05/19/2011 for the course BUS 123 taught by Professor Mw during the Spring '11 term at S.F. State.

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Class 10 (Lawsuits and Ethics) - BUS 320 Business Law...

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