For the two case analyses, the instructor will assign each student a court case to read and brief according to the guidelines and format attached. Each case brief (first page of the case analysis) should be no more than one page long. Additionally, you are to write an original discussion of the case that is one page long. In your discussion, you should relate the case to what you have studied thus far in the course. For example, a First Amendment case should focus on where that case fits within the history of the First Amendment, how it might apply today, and how the student might encounter the effects of that case in a work situation.Example /Assignment: Case Analysis
Two assignments in this course involve case analysis. The first case analysis is due at the beginning of Week 4, and the second case analysis is due at the beginning of week 10. Each case counts for 10% (100 points) of the final grade in the course.
The first page of this analysis will be a “brief.” Each brief should be no longer than one typed page (I will not read beyond one page). Additionally, you are to write an original one-page discussion of the case with your own viewpoint (I will not read beyond one page). Type all single-spaced, 12-point font. In your discussion, you should relate the case to what you have studied thus far in the course, including ethics assignments. For example, a First Amendment case should focus on where that case fits within the history of the First Amendment, how it might apply today, and how you might encounter the effects of that case in a work situation. Be sure to discuss not only legal, but ethical issues for each case, as well as your own viewpoint. Again, the Case Analysis assignments should be no more thantwo2 pages total – I will not read beyond those two pages, and you will lose points for not following this instruction.
How to Brief a Case
These parts are the major components for a case brief, and a form you can use is attached:
Case citation (e.g., 77 Misc.2d 61, 353 N.Y.S.2d 288 (Civ. Ct. 1974))
Facts: Summarize the facts of the case very briefly. List only the essential facts that you need to understand the holding and reasoning of the case.
For example: On June 28, 1974, the ASPCA’s parrot, Chester, flew away. On July 5, Conti (plaintiff) found a bird the court determined was Chester in his backyard. Conti caged the parrot and called the ASPCA for information on parrot care. The SPCA (defendant), suspecting the parrot was Chester, went and took the parrot from Conti. Defendant refused to return the parrot to plaintiff.
Procedure: Most of the cases you will read are appellate court decisions. List what happened in the lower court(s) without detail, in one sentence.
For example: Trial court decision on a replevin action, action where a person seeks to recover possession of particular goods.
Issue(s): What is/are the question(s) facing the court? Usually form the issue question(s) starting with the word, “Whether” and phrased in such a way that the answer is “yes” or “no.”
For example: Who has rightful possession of an escaped parrot originally owned by one party and recaptured by another?
Holding: Briefly state exactly what the court held in this case.
For example: Ownership of a domesticated parrot does not terminate upon escape but continues as against the one who recaptures the escaped animal.
Court’s Reasoning: This is the most important section of the case brief. Here you should list the court’s reasoning in reaching its decision. You can go into detail in this section, listing what the law was before this case was decided and how the law has changed after this decision.
For example: The true owner of lost property is entitled to its return. Ownership of a wild animal (fera naturae) ends when it escapes and returns to its natural liberty. A domesticated animal (one that has been trained and disciplined) is treated as lost property and is subject to return upon recapture.
In determining whether the parrot was domesticated or wild, the court considered three cases and three guidelines. Mullet found an untrained sea lion to be fera naturae. Amory held geese that had been grained were domesticated. Manning determined extinguishing ownership of a pet canary was “wholly at variance with all our views of right and justice.” Chester had been trained, disciplined and was like a canary. Ownership continued to be held by the ASPCA because Chester was domesticated.
You should start a new page here and analyze the case further in no more than one page, discussing these suggested topics (or others you decide to discuss):
1. Do you agree with the outcome of this case?
2. How might the court have decided a similar case with different facts?
3. How does this case relate to what you have studied thus far in the course?
4. How does this case fit within the history of the point of law resolved?
5. How might this case apply today?
6. How might you encounter the effects of this case in a work situation?