Paralegal class assignmnet #5

Q1: The decision in Murdock v Memphis [1875] is among the controversial rulings made by the US Supreme Court (Currier 67). In this case, the Supreme Court denounced its supremacy by ruling that it lacked jurisdiction over a state Supreme Court ruling that entails the application of state laws. In my opinion, the Supreme Court has the power to determine state courts decision unless the case does not satisfy Article III of the US Constitution. In Murdock v Memphis [1875], there was no reference to Article III as the reason for dismissal. Instead, the Judges held that the case pertains to state laws and hence, the Supreme Court did not have the jurisdiction. Although this decision is contrary to my understanding of the relative power of the Federal versus state government, it does not affect what I stand for. I disagree with this decision for I hold that the supremacy of the Supreme Court, as defined in Article III, gives it the jurisdiction over such a case.
Q2: Natural law refers to the system of universal law that is determined by nature. In The Antelope case, the US Supreme Court examined the validity of the slave trade following the capture of a ship ferrying slaves from Africa. By the natural law, the slave trade is illegal for it denies human being of their freedom. In this case, however, the national legislation recognized the slaves as the legal properties of the Vessel crew. The positivist argument prevailed, and the judges held that the master was lawfully transporting his ‘ possession.
Although every judicial theory has unique advantages and limitations over the others, I find judicial restraint as the most appropriate approach for todays justice system. Judicial restraint encourages the judges to limit their power and influence and instead stick to the constitutional provisions. By strictly interpreting the legislations appropriately, judges live to the letter and spirit of the doctrine of separation of powers which defines the legislature as the law formulating body and not the judiciary.
The use of marijuana has been illegal in several countries in the world. However, researchers have proved the medicinal value of this controversial plant. Studies have shown that bhang can be used as a painkiller and in the treatment of brain problems (Sharma 179). For this reason, bhang use should not be prohibited as it is the case in many countries.
Q3: Deposition, Interrogatory and request for admission are the three primary methods of discovery that enables the party to the case exchange information formally before the trial. They allow the parties to access the evidence held by the other party for adequate preparation of the case. Deposition refers to an admissible statement given in an out-of-court setting by any person who is involved in the case. It may be in a form of paper documents, transcription or a videotape. On the other hand, interrogatories are set of written questions that a party to the case sends to the opponent to request for written response. Both deposition statement and interrogatories answers are given under oath. Contrastingly, a request to admit is a formal declaration issued by one litigant to the opponent so that they can either admit or deny the allegations in the statement. Request to admit are often time-bound; thus, failure to respond within the given time amounts to admitting the statement content. Unlike deposition and interrogatories, request to admit is not an approved discovery in civil cases.
An answer and a Counterclaim two closely related words that define the nature defendants response to the complaint leveled against them. When the complainant files a suit in the court of law, the accused is served with the complaint made against them. In response, the accused may file an answer, through which they admit or deny the claim. Alternatively, the accused may choose to file a new complaint against the plaintiff. The complaint from the defendant, filed as a response to the charges leveled against them, referred to as a counterclaim.
The motions to dismiss and motion for summary judgment are both court mechanism that enables the defendant to challenge the plaintiff’s case even before the trial. The defendant files the Motion to Dismiss to request the court to dismiss the case pursuant to Rule 12 set of defense rules. The defense may cite any of the Rule 12 defense provisions such as lack of jurisdiction, insufficient service process, among other. These rules prove that irrespective of the evidence and nature of allegations made, there is no sufficient claim for relief grant. On the other hand, a summary judgment is given pursuant to Rule 56 when the plaintiff evidence meets the minimal threshold of plead but fails to substantiate one or more claim. A summary judgment may be in favor of either party, given when the court determines that there is no sufficient dispute between the cases parties over the facts presented.
The following are some of the Rhode Island cases relating to the above topics
1. Charette v. COMMERCE INSURANCE COMPANY, CA No. 10-249 ML (D. R. I. Feb. 6, 2013). The matter was dismissed pursuant to Rule 12; however, the plaintiff was allowed to file an amended complaint
2. NV ONE, LLC v. POTOMAC REALTY CAPITAL, LLC, CA No. PB-09-7159 (R. I. Super. Ct. Dec. 11, 2012).- The judges considered a summary judgment as per Rule 56
Works Cited
Currier, Katherine A., and Thomas E. Eimermann. Introduction to Law for Paralegals: A Critical Thinking Approach. Aspen Publishers, 1998.
Sharma, Priyamvada, Pratima Murthy, and MM Srinivas Bharath. ” Chemistry, metabolism, and toxicology of cannabis: clinical implications.” Iranian journal of psychiatry 7. 4 (2012): 149. Web. 22 February 2015. http://www. ncbi. nlm. nih. gov/pmc/articles/PMC3570572/