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Schlosser Vs. Fairbanks Capital Corporations

Schlosser VS. Fairbanks Capital Corporations

Paper Masters custom writes case briefs on any case you need using the IRAC method. Custom legal briefs written for business law or any legal course you have.

A common assignment on Schlosser VS. Fairbanks Capital Corporations is as follows:

Brief a case. The paper should have attached the actual case decision, plus the decision of the lower court if available.

Make sure your research includes discussion of any concurring or dissenting opinions. Compare the Court's opinion to that of the lower court, if you can.

In your research paper on Schlosser v. Fairbanks Capital Corp., include legal citations, FOOTNOTES in proper form, number the pages, and check your spelling.


The IRAC Formula

IRAC (Issue, Rule, Analysis, and Conclusion) forms the fundamental building blocks of legal analysis. It is the process by which all lawyers think about any legal problem. The beauty of IRAC is that it allows you to reduce the complexities of the law to a simple equation.

  • ISSUE -> What facts and circumstances brought these parties to court?
  • RULE -> What is the governing law for the issue?
  • ANALYSIS -> Does the rule apply to these unique facts?
  • CONCLUSION -> How does the court's holding modify the rule of law?

Issue Spotting - The First Step

"The facts of a case suggest an Issue."

The key to issue spotting is being able to identify which facts raise which issues. Because of the complexity of the law, the elimination or addition of one fact (such as time of day or whether someone was drinking) can eliminate or add issues to a case thereby raising an entirely different rule of law.

In law school casebooks, the easiest way to isolate the issue is to merely look at the chapter headings of the cases, such as "Personal Jurisdiction" in Civil Procedure or "Offer and Acceptance" in Contracts. The cases you read will also contain language that signals the important issue. For instance, the judge will simply state:

"The case turns upon the question whether."

OR "We come then to the basic issue in the case."

However, you need to develop issue-spotting skills on your own in order to do well on the exam and become an effective lawyer. Ask yourself some of these questions as you read the case:

Questions to ask when reading a case:

  • What facts and circumstances brought these parties to court?
  • Are there buzzwords in the facts that suggest an issue?
  • Is the court deciding a question of fact - i.e. the parties are in dispute over what happened - or is it a question of law - i.e. the court is unsure which rule to apply to these facts?
  • What are the non-issues?

How to Write a Case Brief on Schlosser vs. Fairbanks Capital Corporations

Whenever you read a case, state the issue as a question turning on a set of particular facts. See the examples to see how it is done. By incorporating particular facts into the issue, you build a database of issues for the exam.

Rule - What is the Law?

"The issue is covered by a Rule of law."

Simply put, the rule is the law. The rule could be common law that was developed by the courts or a law that was passed by the legislature.

For every case you read, extract the rule of law by breaking it down into its component parts. In other words, ask the question: what elements of the rule must be proven in order for the rule to hold true?

Questions to ask when reading a case:

  • What are the elements that prove the rule?
  • What are the exceptions to the rule?
  • From what authority does it come? Common law, statute, new rule?
  • What's the underlying public policy behind the rule?
  • Are there social considerations?

The trap for the unwary is to stop at the rule. Although the rule is the law, the art of lawyering is in the analysis.

Analysis - The Art of Lawyering

"Compare the facts to the rule to form the Analysis."

This important area is really relatively simple. For every relevant fact, you need to ask whether the fact helps to prove or disprove the rule. If a rule requires that a certain circumstance is present in order for the rule to apply, then the absence of that circumstance helps you reach the conclusion that the rule does not apply. For instance, all contracts for the sale of goods over $500 have to be in writing. Consequently, in analyzing a contract for the sale of goods, you apply the presence or absence of two facts - worth of good and whether there's a written contract - in order to see whether the rule holds true.

Law Analysis

The biggest mistake people make in exam writing is to spot the issue and just recite the rule without doing the analysis. Most professors know that you can look up the law, but they want to test whether you can apply the law to a given set of circumstances. The analysis is the most important element of IRAC since this is where the real thinking happens.

Questions to ask when reading a case:

  • Which facts help prove which elements of the rule?
  • Why are certain facts relevant?
  • How do these facts satisfy this rule?
  • What types of facts are applied to the rule?
  • How do these facts further the public policy underlying this rule?
  • What's the counter-argument for another solution?

Conclusion - Take a Position

"From the analysis you come to a Conclusion as to whether the rule applies to the facts."

The conclusion is the shortest part of the equation. It can be a simple "yes" or "no" as to whether the rule applies to a set of facts. A clever professor will often give you a set of facts that could go either way in order to see how well you analyze a difficult issue. The mistake many students make is to never take a position one way or the other on an issue. Most professors want you to take a position and support it in order to see how well you analyze.

Another common mistake is to conclude something without having a basis for the opinion. In other words, students will spot the issue, state a rule, and then form a conclusion without doing the analysis. Make sure that whatever position you take has a firm grounding in the analysis. Remember that the position you take is always whether or not the rule applies.

If a rule does not apply, don't fall into the trap of being conclusive on a party's liability or innocence. There may be another rule by which the party should be judged. In other words you should conclude as to whether the rule applies, but you shouldn't be conclusive as to whether some other result is probable. In that case, you need to raise another rule and analyze the facts again.

In addition, the conclusion should always be stated as a probable result. Courts differ widely on a given set of facts, and there is usually flexibility for different interpretations. Be sure to look at the validity of the opponent's position. If your case has flaws, it is important to recognize those weaknesses and identify them.

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