law case study

POL 123 – Case Analysis 1 Fact Patterns

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For each fact pattern, specify the essential legal issue(s) involved, describe the legal concepts from the text, decide which side should win, and explain your reasoning and how you used the legal concepts to arrive at your decision. See the Case Analysis Instructions for further information about completing this assignment.


1.     Brian Short v. State of Florida

Brian and Jennifer were in love. They had been high school sweethearts, and they planned to get married when they both graduated from Saint Leo University. However, there was one problem: Brian and Jennifer were both very short. Each stood less than five feet tall. The state of Florida had recently passed a law that prohibited two very short people from marrying. In defense of the law, the state asserted that in order to maintain dominance with the state university athletic programs (e.g. Gator football and basketball, Seminole football), the state had a legitimate interest in making sure that the children born in Florida would be as tall as possible. After all, football brings in so much money to the universities, which allows less financial strain on the state to support them. Further, bigger children are less likely to fall into small holes, and seat belts can fit them better; thus, this law would protect all the children of the state. This law was titled “Maintaining the size of our children” law. Brian and Jennifer have sued the state, claiming that the law is unconstitutional.


2.     Michael v. University

Michael pulled an “all-nighter” studying for an important exam. He was exhausted the next day, and during the exam, performed “head-rotations” to loosen his cramped neck muscles. Dr. Pickett, who was proctoring the exam, saw him stretching and thought he was looking at the answer sheet of the student setting next to him. She took his exam and dismissed him from the classroom. She also told him that because of his cheating, he would automatically fail the class. The next day, Michael discovered that he had been dismissed from the University with no tuition refunds and that his transcripts had been deleted. Michael is suing the University claiming that the University’s actions were unconstitutional and asking to be reinstated and to continue his education without penalty.


3.     Taylor Lautner v. Taylor Swift

Taylor Swift was living in the same house with Taylor Lautner for three years. During that time, they both pursued independent acting and music careers, and each earned substantial income. They were as much in love as can be and shared many good times. They never pooled their financial resources into one account, and each paid their own expenses except for the rent, which they split down the middle. By mutual consent, they agreed that they had fallen out of love and were each interested in pursuing other relationships. After a short time, Mr. Lautner’s acting roles dried up. He is now suing Ms. Swift for half of everything she earned while they were cohabitating together.



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