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FSU BUL 3310 - Exam 1 Study Guide

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Definitions from the TextBUL3310 Exam 1 Study GuideBusiness Law Course Tools1. Semantics- The branch of the science of language that deals with the meaning of words. a. Koikos Case(in course documents): A dispute over the meaning of “occurrence” in an insurance policydetermined whether the policy would cover $500,000 or $1,000,000. The argument was that each gunshot was considered a separate “occurrence”, but the insurance company said they would all be grouped into one “occurrence.” The lack of unambiguous language in the policy determined each shot could be a separate occurrence. 2. Logic- extracting legal rules from past cases by inductive reasoning. (How judges make decisions)Simple Example: Law: by statute, A driver who runs a red light is at fault (and liable) in an incident.Facts: Driver A ran a red light causing a collision.Conclusion: Driver A is at fault (and liable).(A Statute = a law posted by the legislature)In reference to the Daddy case: Father made legal will entitling two of his four children to split the will between themselves (Children A & B split everything, C&D got nothing), but the Father signed the will as“Daddy.” So the other children tried to file a case in order to saw that the signature was invalid. After a bunch of lawyer’s fees and time the signature was deemed valid, but Children A&B got significantly less of their inheritance due to lawyers’ fees. So it may have been more beneficial for the children to just settle w/ Children C&D. 3. Stare Decisis- the doctrine of precedent (What’s occurred before) “Latin for: "to stand by that which is decided." The principal that the precedent decisions are to be followed by the courts. To abide or adhere to decided cases. It is a general maxim that when a point has been settled by decision, it forms a precedent which is not afterwards to be departed from. The doctrine of stare decisis is not always to be relied upon, for the courts find it necessary to overrule cases which have been hastily decided, or contrary to principle. Many hundreds of such overruled cases may be found in the American and English books of reports.” (http://www.lectlaw.com/def2/s065.htm) Advantages: 1) Certainty in the law. 2) Equality in the law. 3) Makes Judicial Decision making easier ( judges don’t have to reinvent the wheel every trial) Disadvantages: Stagnation in the law: perpetuation a mistake. Society is moving on while judges are not, we must modernize the law.4. Common Sense- “the law is not an enemy of common sense”“When we judge people, religion, societies, governments or history we have to start with well-established principles and common sense.� When we plan for the future of our life or even death, a good look at history will help us with established principles because they tell us what worked and what did not. Common sense lets us analyze the logical consequences of what we plan on doing.�” (http://www.unitypublishing.com/Government/RuleOfLaw.htm)The Florida State Court System: (I would suggest reading pages 4-7 in the Target Packet on your own, multiple times, to gather at the full idea of the courts and theirs components) Here is a website link to an almost verbatim version Pages 4-7 in our notes (READ BOTH IF POSSIBLE) http://www.floridasupremecourt.org/pub_info/system2.shtml The Structure of the Florida Judicial Court System as of January 2012Appellate Courts “appeal”Supreme Court- Seven Justices serve six year terms each -> Merit retention re-election- Sits in Tallahassee- Five Justices constitute a quorum (but usually all 7 are present) (sees about 100-150 cases)District Courts of appeal- 62 judges w/ six year terms each, no elections -> merit retention –public chooses- Five Districts1st District- Tallahassee – 15 Judges2nd District- Lakeland -- 14 Judges3rd District- Miami – 11 Judges4th District- West Palm Beach – 12 Judges5th District- Daytona Beach – 10 Judges- Cases are reviewed by a 3 judge panel- These are oral arguments not trialsTrial Courts Circuit Courts (FELONY)- 599 Judges- six year terms; ELECTIONS- Twenty Judicial circuits; JUDGES ARE DISTRIBUTED ACCORDING TO POPULATION- Different number of judges in each circuit- Judges preside individually County Courts (misdemeanors -> 1 year or less in jail)- 322 Judges with six year terms - At least one judge in each of the 67 counties - Judges preside individually- Handles all disputes $15,000 or less- Small claims court, do not need an attorney; most people represent themselves.Pyramidal System Categories of Law: (broad info meant to give a general idea the different categories law, not required to know in detail)1. Criminal : “Criminal law is distinctive for the uniquely serious potential consequences or sanctions for failure to abide by its rules. ([[Dennis J. Baker, The Right Not to be Criminalized: Demarcating Criminal Law's Authority, (Ashgate 2011)]] Every crime is composed of criminal elements. Capital punishment may be imposed in some jurisdictions for the most serious crimes. Physical or corporal punishment may be imposed such as whipping or caning, although these punishments are prohibited in much of the world. Individuals may be incarcerated in prison or jail in a variety of conditions depending on the jurisdiction. Confinement may be solitary. Length of incarceration may vary from a day to life. Government supervision may be imposed, including house arrest, and convicts may be required to conform to particularized guidelines as part of a parole or probation regimen. Fines also may be imposed, seizing money or property from a person convicted of a crime.Five objectives are widely accepted for enforcement of the criminal law by punishments: retribution, deterrence, incapacitation, rehabilitation and restitution. Jurisdictions differ on the value to be placed on each.- Retribution – Criminals ought to suffer in some way. This is the most widely seen goal. Criminals have taken improper advantage, or inflicted unfair detriment, upon others and consequently, the criminal law will put criminals at some unpleasant disadvantage to "balance the scales." People submit to the law to receive the right not to be murdered and if people contravene these laws, they surrender the rights granted to them by the law. Thus, one who murders may be murdered himself. A related theory includes the idea of "righting the balance."- Deterrence – Individual deterrence is aimed toward the specific offender. The aim


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