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Running Head: Critical Legal Thinking Case Study 2

Critical Legal Thinking Case Study 2

BUL 3130 - Business Law and Ethics

Beka Swaby

03/31/2019
Critical Legal Thinking Case Study 2 2

Can Jim recover damages from Ruth; from Flowers, Inc? Why or why not?

Jim can recover damages from Ruth and from Flowers, Inc because of negligence, according to

the scenario descripted and the evidence of the case, something that Jim would need to prove.

Basically, he’ll need to prove the jury that both the company and Ruth did not follow their duty

of care and their duty of care, leading to Jim being harmed.

In order to establish negligence, Jim would need to prove that (1) both Ruth and Flowers, Inc.,

owed a duty to him to act in conformity with a certain standard of conduct to act reasonably

under the circumstances; (2) Flowers Inc and Ruth breached that duty by failing to conform to

the standard; (3) a reasonably close casual connection exists between the injury and the Ruth or

Flowers Inc’s actuation; and (4) that Jim really suffered a loss or injury because of the

happenings. Once negligence is proven, the next step would be to prove the breach of duty or

care.

Based on the key facts, Jim should be able to prove to the court that Ruth and Flowers, Inc. are

the reasons behind what caused his injury along with the property damage, without any kind of

issues or worries, according to the evidence found and hound the scenario developed. Since Ruth

was the one who carelessly left her car parked improperly on a steep hill, Ruth breached the duty

of care that she owed to everyone around her, including Jim. Because of her irresponsible actions

Jim suffered an injury, not mentioning the monetary losses that the station and the tanker

suffered due to the explosions and the loss of opportunities for commercializing and the own loss

of the product. It needs to be clear that Ruth was acting on behalf of Flowers, Inc., so the

plaintiff (Jim) would also be able to claim through liability damages from Flowers, Inc.
Critical Legal Thinking Case Study 2 3

Identify the cause of action. Discuss each element of the cause of action and relate them to
your assessment of whether Jim has a cause of action against Ruth.

According to James, (2014, the causation requirements include two parts: actual cause and

proximate cause. In the case under study, the plaintiff will need to prove that both causes or

requirements were present during the case. For establishing the actual cause, Jim will need to

prove the jury that he was hurt as a result of the other part’s negligence (remembering it’s

Flowers, Inc and Ruth), whose action in the parking set led to a series of occurrences after Ruth

was told by Flowers Inc to directly deliver orders for them, carelessly parking her vehicle on a

steep hill improperly, an event that caused the vehicle to move way down the hill and hit an

electric line, which at the same time ignited a field of grass which led to the ignition of a gasoline

station a mile away. The gasoline station in fire also ignited the gasoline pumped at the moment

by a gasoline tanker, which explosion led to the gasoline’s structure collapse and the plaintiff

being harmed.

If Ruth acted according to the minimum safety standards or if she had never left her regular

position at the company Flowers, Inc, the events that led to Jim’s injury would have never

happened. That leads to the establishment of proximate cause. Now Jim will need to prove that

Ruth and/or the company had a duty to protect the particular plaintiff against the particular

conduct that injured the plaintiff. This is a requirement that places limits on the liability

regarding the other party, the defendant. A risk that a regular reasonable subject would have

avoided, such as parking on a steep hill and not doing it properly, was created by Ruth’s actions.

The only issue is to prove that all the chain of events happened because of Ruth’s irresponsible

actions.
Critical Legal Thinking Case Study 2 4

Discuss the legal doctrine under which Jim might also recover from Flowers, Inc.

Two legal doctrines can make Jim to recover damages from Ruth and Flowers, Inc: Respondeat

Superior and Res Ispa Loquitor.

Respondeat Superior is a legal doctrine known for making the employer, such as Flowers, Inc.,

liable for all of the actions of their employees, such as Ruth, when the actions or events that lead

to the happening under discussion took place within the scope of the employment, making the

employer liable for all of their employees as a result of such a common law. Ruth undoubtedly

acted as an employee of Flowers Inc., being proven that she was told to use her own car to make

the deliveries. This fact will allow Jim to recover damages from the company.

The other legal doctrine, Res Ispa Loquitor, will allow Jim to prove the breach of duty and

causation indirectly. This doctrine applies when an accident has occurred and although there is

no direct proof that the accident would not have happened without someone’s negligence,

according to Surhone, Timpledon and Marseken (2010).


Critical Legal Thinking Case Study 2 5

References

Baish, A. (2005). Six Factors to Consider for a Successful Litigation Strategy - Godfrey & Kahn.
Recuperated from:
http://www.gklaw.com/news.cfm?action=pub_detail&publication_id=374

Gopen, G. (1988). The State of Legal Writing: Res Ipsa Loquitur. Michigan Law Review. ISSN
0026-2234.

Hirby, J. (2015). Activities and Events that Occur at a Pretrial Hearing. Thelawdictionary.org.
Retrieved from: http://thelawdictionary.org/article/activities-and-events-that-occur-at-
a-pretrial-hearing/

James, P. (2014). Preparing for Trial. Pretrial Planning Conference and Final Stipulation.
Recuperated from: https://jamespublishing.com/2014/pretrial-planning-conference-
final-stipulation/

Surhone, L.; Timpledon, M.; Marseken, S. (2010). Respondeat Superior: Legal Doctrine,
Common Law, Civil Law, Tort, Employment, Civil Law, Vicarious Liability.
Betascript Publishing. ISBN 6130342276, 9786130342272.