- Gryphon Consultancy is a computer-consulting firm. It spends considerable time and effort recruiting the best personnel from the United States’ leading technical schools. Gryphon employees sign an initial three-year employment commitment. Dwayne worked for Gryphon, but then he quit and formed a competing company, which he called Syntel. His new company contacted Gryphon employees by phone, offering more money to come work for Syntel. At least 16 Gryphon employees left their work without completing their contractual obligations and went to work for Syntel. Gryphon sued. What did it claim, and what should be the result?
- You have most likely heard of the Liebeck v. McDonald’s case. Liebeck spilled hot McDonald’s coffee in her lap, suffering third degree burns. At trial, evidence showed that her cup of coffee was brewed at 190 degrees, and that, more typically, a restaurant’s “hot coffee” is in the range of 140–160 degrees. A jury awarded Liebeck $160,000 in compensatory damages and $2.7 million in punitive damages. The judge reduced the punitive award to $480,000, or three times the compensatory award. Comment on the case, and whether the result was reasonable.
- Self-driving cars are no longer science fiction. These vehicles are programmed to use lasers, sensors, software, and maps to drive themselves. A handful of states have passed laws allowing driverless technology on the road. But what happens when a driverless car harms someone? Who should be at fault? The passenger? The programmer? The manufacturer?
- Congress passed the Protection for Lawful Commerce in Arms Act which provides that gun manufacturers and retailers cannot be sued for injuries arising from the criminal misuse of a weapon. Critics argue that when gun makers market and sell military-style assault rifles to civilians, they should be held liable because these highly dangerous weapons are designed for specially trained soldiers, not the general public. Assume you own a gun store. What ethical considerations would apply to the sale of guns in your store? If Congress had not passed the pertinent statute, what legal theory might make a gun store owner liable for a customer’s misuse of a gun bought at the store?
Your answer length may vary, but you should have enough to discuss to submit at least a few paragraphs for each question or scenario posed. If sources are requested, you must use MLA style and provide in-text citations and a Works Cited page. When referring to a case cited in the text, you do not need to provide a case citation, merely provide the page number that you are referencing.
Each question is worth 40 points, totaling 120 points per assignment.
These Case Questions are due before 11:59 p.m. CT on Sunday of the assigned week.
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