Business Law - Chapter(s) 1-4.docx

More than 2500 multinational companies now release

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More than 2,500 multinational companies now release large quantities of accounting information to the public. Internal Reports Designed for External Scrutiny Some large companies refer to the man- agerial accounting information that they release to the public as corporate sustainability reports. Dow Chemical Company, for example, issues a sustain- ability report annually. Other corporations call their pub- lished documents social responsibility reports. Symantec Corporation issues corporate responsibility reports to demonstrate its focus on environmen- tal, social, and governance issues. In its 2012 report, Symantec empha- sized that the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LED) program had certified 88 percent of its facilities as environmentally friendly. LEED cer- tification requires the achievement of high standards for energy efficiency, material usage in construction, and other environmental impacts.
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••••• THE COURTS AND ALTERNA TIVE DISPUTE RESOLUTI ON FACING A LEGAL PROBLEM A dispute arises between Harry Koto, a resident of California, and Maria Mendez, a resident of Texas, over the ownership of the Fairweather, a sailboat in dry dock in San Diego, California. Can a California state court exercise jurisdiction over the dispute? Every society needs to have an established method for resolving disputes. This is particu- larly true in the business world. Nearly every businessperson will face a lawsuit at some time in his or her career. For this reason, anyone involved in business needs to have an understanding of court systems in the United States, as well as of the various methods of dispute resolution that can be pursued outside the courts. American law is based on numerous elements, including the following: 1. The case decisions and reasoning that form the common law. 2. Federal and state constitutions. 3. Statutes passed by federal and state legislatures— including uniform laws, such as the Uniform Commercial Code—that have been adopted by the various states. 4. Administrative law. The function of the courts is to interpret and apply those laws. Even though there are fifty-two court systems— one for each of the fifty states, one for the District of Columbia, plus a federal system— similaritie s abound. Keep in mind that the federal courts are not superior to the state courts. They are simply an independe
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nt system of courts. Both systems are examined in this chapter. The chapter concludes with an overview of some alternative methods of settling dis- putes, including online dispute resolution. 3-1 JURISDICTION Jurisdiction refers either to the geographical area within which a court has the right and power to decide cases or to the right and power of a court to decide matters concerning certain persons, property, or subject matter. Before any court can hear a case, it must have jurisdiction over the person against whom the suit is brought or over the property involved in the suit, as well as jurisdiction over the subject matter.
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