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Commercial Law Keyed to Warren
Smith v. Olympic Bank
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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:
Charles Alcombrack was appointed as the guardian for his son Chad who was the beneficiary of his grandfather’s life insurance policy. The insurance company issued a check for $30,588.39 made payable to “Charles Alcombrack, Guardian of the Estate of Chad Stephen Alcombrack a Minor.” The attorney for the son’s estate instructed the father to take the check, along with the letters of guardianship to the bank and open up a guardianship savings and checking account. The father did not follow the attorney’s instructions and instead opened a personal checking and savings account with the check. The father indorsed the check in his guardianship capacity. Despite the fact that the check was payable to the father in his guardianship capacity, the bank allowed the father to place the entire amount in his newly opened personal accounts. The attorney called to follow up on the guardianship account, and the trust officer wrote the attorney, specifically mentioning the “Estate of Chad Alcombrack.” The father used all but $320.60 of the trust money. After the depletion of the estate, the plaintiff, J. David Smith (the “plaintiff”) was appointed successor guardian. The trial court granted Summary Judgment in favor of the defendant, Olympic Bank (the “defendant”) but the Court of Appeals reversed and remanded holding that the trial should determine the factual issue of whether the bank was a holder in due course.
- 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.
- Concurring / Dissenting Opinions: Includes valuable concurring or dissenting opinions and their key points.
- 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.