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Civil Procedure Keyed to Mueller
Malone v. United States Postal Service
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*Case Brief Anatomy includes: Brief Prologue, Complete Case Brief, Brief Epilogue
- The Brief Prologue provides necessary case brief introductory information and includes:
- Topic: Identifies the topic of law and where this case fits within your course outline.
- Parties: Identifies the cast of characters involved in the case.
- Procedural Posture & History: Shares the case history with how lower courts have ruled on the matter.
- Case Key Terms, Acts, Doctrines, etc.: A case specific Legal Term Dictionary.
- Case Doctrines, Acts, Statutes, Amendments and Treatises: Identifies and Defines Legal Authority used in this case.
- The Case Brief is the complete case summarized and authored in the traditional Law School I.R.A.C. format. The Pro case brief includes:
- Brief Facts: A Synopsis of the Facts of the case.
- Rule of Law: Identifies the Legal Principle the Court used in deciding the case.
- Facts: What are the factual circumstances that gave rise to the civil or criminal case? What is the relationship of the Parties that are involved in the case. Review the Facts of this case here:
Ann Malone (plaintiff) sued the United States Postal Service (Government) (defendant), for violating her civil rights. The matter went to trial in November 1984. After Malone’s attorney presented her case in a disorderly fashion, the judge declared a mistrial. Subsequently, the court issued a pretrial order requiring both parties to identify all witnesses and provide a list of all direct questions and expected responses by April 25, 1985. The court stated that no oral argument or continuances would be allowed with respect to the order. Trial was set to begin in June. The Government worked to comply with the order. Malone’s attorney, on the other hand, informed the Government on April 23 that Malone would not comply. On April 26, Malone objected to the order, requested the judge’s recusal, and sought a continuance. The Government moved to dismiss Malone’s case. At a hearing on May 16, Malone’s attorney stated that she lacked the financial resources to comply with the order. The judge was unconvinced, given other discovery expenditures made by Malone. The court dismissed Malone’s case with prejudice. Malone appealed.
- Issue(s): Lists the Questions of Law that are raised by the Facts of the case.
- Holding: Shares the Court's answer to the legal questions raised in the issue.
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- Reasoning and Analysis: Identifies the chain of argument(s) which led the judges to rule as they did.
- The Brief Prologue closes the case brief with important forward-looking discussion and includes:
- Policy: Identifies the Policy if any that has been established by the case.
- Court Direction: Shares where the Court went from here for this case.