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Constitutional Law Keyed to Cohen
Loving v. Virginia
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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:
The Petitioners were married in the District of Columbia pursuant to its laws. Shortly after their marriage, the Petitioners returned to Virginia and were charged by a grand jury with violating Virginia’s ban on interracial marriages. The Petitioners pled guilty to the violation and left the State of Virginia pursuant to a condition of their judicial sentence. The Petitioners filed suit in a Virginia state court to have the sentence vacated pursuant to the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. The state court denied the motion to vacate the sentences. The Supreme Court of Appeals affirmed the lower court’s decision based on the rationale that the State had a legitimate purpose in preserving the racial integrity of its citizens and that the regulation of marriage had been traditionally been left to the states exclusive control. The State argued that since it treated blacks and whites equally in prohibiting interracial marriage, the Equal Protection clause was not violated.
- 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.