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Messages - phosita

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General Board / Re: case briefing
« on: May 24, 2006, 02:37:59 PM »
Before class and before an exam are totally different.  For an exam, jumboshrip's is far superior.  For class, the one from 4lawschool is adequate.  But no way you need to know all that *&^% for an exam.

Good point - I threw "exam" in there without really thinking about it. But I'd still hesitate to call jumboshrimp's example a brief - as budlaw said it's more like a description that belongs in an outline.


General Board / Re: case briefing
« on: May 24, 2006, 01:27:14 PM »
Here's alternate way to brief Hadley (taken from

DATE:  January 3, 2004

STUDENT:  Lisa Nash, 1L

TOPIC:  Damages and Remedies; Expectation Damages

CASE:  Hadley v. Baxendale, Court of Exchequer, 9 Exch. 341, 156 Eng. Rep 145 (1854)

FACTS:  Plaintiffs were the owners of a mill whose operation was stopped due to the breakage of a crank shaft.  The shaft had to be sent to engineers of the manufacturer [Joyce & Company] as a pattern for a new one.  Plaintiffs used Pickford & Company as carriers.  The clerk advised them that the shaft must be sent immediately, as the mill was stopped.  The clerk was promised delivery in one day and paid 2 pounds 4 shillings for the delivery.  However, Pickford failed to perform as promised and delivery was delayed for several days.  As a result, plaintiff lost several days’ profits from the mill that otherwise would have been made if the shaft had been delivered on time.  Plaintiff sues Defendant for lost profits.

HISTORY:  In the trial case, the jury returned a verdict for the Plaintiffs for 25 pounds, plus the amount paid into Court.  Defendant appeals and a new trial is ordered.  Appellate court reverses.

ISSUE:  Can Plaintiffs recover lost profits?


RULE/ANALYSIS:  A New Rule was created in this case:  The court found that an aggrieved buyer of services will be unable to recover consequential losses resulting from breach unless the losses are 1) a “natural” consequence of breach; or 2) the buyer brings the circumstances which would generate the losses expressly to the seller’s attention.  The court reasoned that Pickford had no way of knowing that Plaintiffs would lose profits if the shipment of the shaft was delayed, as this information wasn’t communicated directly to them and therefore the loss of profits was not reasonably contemplated by both the parties when they made the contract.  Although the fact that the mill was closed was communicated, it wasn’t made completely clear to the Defendants that the mill was closed because of the broken shaft and couldn’t re-open again until it was fixed.  For all the Defendants knew, the mill was closed for another reason.

SUMMARY:  Indirect or consequential damages are only recoverable if reasonably foreseeable by both of the parties at the time of the contract and arising naturally from such breach.  This legal concept is still alive today – 150 years later.  If the Plaintiffs had made it clear that the mill’s operation was dependent upon getting the new crank shaft, the outcome would have been in their favor.

Given the choice between having this example or Jumboshrimp's to review before class or an exam, I'd prefer this one. However, 'reasonable minds may disagree'.

General Board / Re: case briefing
« on: May 24, 2006, 01:20:49 PM »
The ultimate case brief looks something like this:

Hadley v. Baxendale

You can get "special damages" for consequence of breach which were reasonably foreseeable at the time of contracting. (Shaft broke- delay cost Hadley money- not foreseeable)

Any more than that and you're wasting time and becoming an inefficient writer.

In my opinion, you're not wasting time if adding more details to your brief will help you remeber important information (whether it's because you have it written down or just because you went through the act of writing it). Also in my opinion, since briefs are entirely for your own benefit, it doesn't matter if you're being an efficient writer (aside from it being good practice). I don't think it's fair to say that a one sentance summary of the rule demonstrated by a case is necessarily the ultimate brief that will be adequete for everybody in every situation.

I agree with most of the other posters - there's no one right way to brief cases and finding the style that works best for you will probably take a couple of weeks of experience. It will vary based on your learning style, the complexity of the case, whether the case demonstrates a key concept or just an obscure exception to a key concept, the amount of detail a particular professor wants to hear about a case in class, etc.

General Board / Re: hour billing rate
« on: May 24, 2006, 12:01:22 PM »
i recently finished my 1L year and working at a small firm.  I was just wondering the difference in what lawyers charge per hour, average at least, well like a solo guy, small firm, med, and large.  Also I always hear that Patent atty can make bank, my question was then do they charge more per hour to compensate?  just curious,

I don't know what a non-patent attorney charges so I can't really compare, but I work at a small, two attorney, IP firm in what's probably a mid-sized legal market but with a larger than average number of high-tech companies and the attorney's billing rate seems to be between $250 and $350 per hour depending on the type of work and the client. However, both attorneys have around 20 years experience and are good at what they do and I think their rates reflect that.   

General Board / Re: PATENT BAR
« on: May 24, 2006, 11:46:33 AM »
From the "General Requirements Bulletin" (
An applicant applying for the examination must demonstrate that he or she possesses the
scientific and technical training necessary to provide valuable service to patent applicants.
Applicants bear the burden of showing the requisite scientific and technical training. To be
admitted to the examination, each applicant must demonstrate possession of the required
scientific and technical training.
A. CATEGORY A: Bachelor's Degree in a Recognized Technical Subject. An applicant will be
considered to have the necessary scientific and technical training if he or she provides an
official transcript showing that a Bachelor's degree was awarded in one of the following
subjects by an accredited United States college or university, or that the equivalent to a
Bachelor's degree was awarded by a foreign university in one of the following subjects:
Computer Science*
Electronics Technology
Food Technology
General Chemistry
Marine Technology
Molecular Biology
Organic Chemistry
Textile Technology
Aeronautical Engineering
Agricultural Engineering
Biomedical Engineering
Ceramic Engineering
Chemical Engineering
Civil Engineering
Computer Engineering
Electrical Engineering
Electrochemical Engineering
Engineering Physics
General Engineering
Geological Engineering
Industrial Engineering
Mechanical Engineering
Metallurgical Engineering
Mining Engineering
Nuclear Engineering
Petroleum Engineering
*Acceptable Computer Science degrees must be accredited by the
Computer Science Accreditation Commission (CSAC) of the Computing
Sciences Accreditation Board (CSAB), or by the Computing Accreditation
Commission (CAC) of the Accreditation Board for Engineering and
Technology (ABET), on or before the date the degree was awarded.
Computer science degrees that are accredited may be found on the Internet

There are two other categories, B) having a certain number of semester hours in subjects like physics, chemistry, microbiology, etc.  and C) practical experience. You can find the details on the PTO website.

Studying and Exam Taking / Re: Law School Prep Books
« on: May 23, 2006, 05:41:41 PM »
Also, are there any PT students out there who also work full-time? If I wasn't working full-time this fall, I wouldn't even consider prepping over the summer. But since we have much less free time than full-time students, I'm wondering if there is some value in reading the E&E's in advance.

There's probably some value - but not much. Not enough to be worth spending your summer reading something you'll have to re-read later.
If you do any prep, I'd recomend what was suggested earlier - look at the syllabi for your classes or look a summary of the topic (wikipedia has good ones for all the 1L classes) and get a good grasp of what appear to be important terms. Besides, if you have any friends or loved ones, you should be enjoying what time you have with them now. I literally spent more time with my legal writing partner than I did my wife during the spring semester. Don't waste your summer doing something that will be, at best, only marginally beneficial.

As a compromise between recreational and educational reading, I'd suggest The Brethren by Bob Woodward.

If you're really curious, give the E&E's a shot but I wouldn't put too much effort into it (or at least, I wouldn't get stressed about it). I read PLS right before classes started last fall and got all freaked out that I hadn't spent the last 3 years preparing for my first week of law school. Turns out, it wasn't too big a deal.

It's true that as a part-time student working full-time you'll have much less free time than the day students, but it's still managable. Plus you and your fellow evening students can all bond by rolling your eyes at each other when the day students complain about how busy they are.


Lewis and Clark / Re: attending
« on: May 19, 2006, 10:30:44 PM »
I heard you folks have a C/C- curve, is that BS?

I think each prof can set it to whatever they want as long as it's under a B.

Pointless Arguments / Re: Encouragement needed
« on: May 19, 2006, 08:37:55 PM »
The fact is your dad complained, and partners in law firms hate complainers (How are these two clauses logically connected? Is her dad trying to get a job at a law firm?)More writing advice (You haven't given any writing advice yet so this can't be "more" writing advice. You were also missing a verb, e.g. "writing 'about about'...")Repeating words, such as when you wrote "about about", will not get you on any journal(poor phrasing - see below).  Also, starting a sentence with "And" is a sign of bad writing skills.  You obviously(If you need to use an adverb like "obviously," your conclusion is most likely not obvious) Your poor writing shows that you must go to a t4 or non aba4th tier or a non A.B.A. accredited law school, and should give up trying to write onto a journal, because you lack basic writing skills(If her poor writing is typical of her school, then shouldn't it suffice to write onto a journal at that school?)Also(repetetive)Moreover, working in a law firm before attending law school is viewed, by most partners, as a NEGATIVE.  If you do not believe me read anonymous lawyers blog (how many anonymous lawyers contribute to this blog and where are we supposed to find it?).  Paralegals(You seem to be assuming she was a paralegal) carry a bad stigma (redundant - there are no good stigmas) with them for theretheir entire career.

Overall, the writing style seemed clunky and fragmented and many of the conclusions reached had little or no support.


Pointless Arguments / Re: Encouragement needed
« on: May 19, 2006, 07:09:52 PM »
This board is so lame.  Every single student that ever graduated with a hard earned degree complained at one point or another.  Anyone who just finished exams and now is working on a paper is going to be a little worn out.  I can't believe how lame some people are, "law firms don't like complainers."  Well no *&^% shirlock.  No one likes a complainer, but one complaint doesn't make you a complainer.  Anyone who lives there entire life without voicing a single complaint is either mute or brain dead. 

I especially like the "don't brag about your accomplishments, because I can brag more than you can."  That makes tons of sense.  Actaully, it doesn't make any sense because she wasn't bragging in the first place, but only providing evidence towards the fact that she is a hard worker.

I agree with everything florida said.

Lewis and Clark / Re: attending
« on: May 19, 2006, 06:54:44 PM »
I attend - just finished 1st year.
As to alive - barely. :)

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