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Torts Keyed to Epstein
Varian Medical Systems, Inc. v. Delfino
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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:
Delfino and Day were former Varian employees who were sued by Varian Associates, Inc., and two of its officers, for defamation, invasion of privacy, breach of contract and conspiracy. This followed the posting of more than 13,000 derogatory messages about the company and the two executives by the former employees. The employees argued that the First Amendment gave them the right to free speech. They also vowed to continue the posting of such messages till their death. The trial court therefore issued injunctive orders to prevent any more injury to the company, and the jury found them liable to pay damages on all counts. They appealed, arguing that, among other things, exaggerated speech on the internet is not defamatory. If internet speech is defamatory, it comes under the category of slander, rather than libel. The distinction is important since slander requires specific damages to be proved for recoverable liability, whereas libel presumes damages per se. The intermediate court of appeals granted review.
- 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.