Week 1 assignment legal underpinnings of business law

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Answer all parts of the following question:

1. Imagine that you own each of the following businesses:

Tinker’s Home Security Service (sole proprietorship)

Tinker & Tailor’s Home Security Service (general partnership)

Tinker & Tailor’s Home Security Service (LP)

Tinker & Tailor’s Home Security Service, Inc. (corporation)

Tinker & Tailor’s Home Security Service, LLC (LLC)

The businesses are being sued for breach of contract. In a chart that does not exceed ½ of a page, compare and contrast your personal liability exposure as a result of the different lawsuits. In one paragraph, discuss how you might limit your liability exposure within each particular business organizational form.

2. After completing the first part of this exercise, describe one business (non-profit organization to counsel young ladies) that you may own some day or that you currently own. (Even if you never plan to own a business, pretend as if you will do so for the purposes of this question.) Identify the best business organizational form for the type of business that you have described, considering personal liability exposure, as well as management, taxation, and ease of

The Nature of Law 

The sources of American Law are:

·         Constitutional Law

·         Statutory Law

·         Administrative Law

·         Case Law

 Constitutional law is derived from the U.S. Constitution and the various state constitutions.  The supreme law of the land is the U.S. Constitution and it takes precedence over state constitutions.  State constitutions are supreme within their own individual state borders as long as there is no violation or conflict with the U.S. Constitution or a federal law. 

 Statutory law is comprised of statutes and ordinances enacted by federal, state, and local legislatures.  These laws may not violate the U.S. Constitution or the applicable state constitution. 

 Administrative law is derived from decisions, rules, and orders from administrative agencies.

Case law is comprised of the various decisions arrived at by judges for cases through interpretations of statutes and regulations.

In a civil proceeding, the party bringing the action or suit is commonly referred to as the plaintiff and party against whom the suit is brought is commonly referred to as the defendant.  

The Resolution of Private Disputes  

Alternative solutions have been offered to litigation in an effort to reduce time and effort.  The alternative measures fall under a broad category referred to as alternative dispute resolution (ADR). 

Methods include:

·         Mediation

·         Arbitration

·         Online Dispute Resolution



Business and the Constitution  

Business decisions may be impacted by the following areas of law:

 ·         Contracts

·         Product Liability

·         Intellectual Property

·         Sales

·         Negotiable Instruments

·         Creditors’ Rights

·         E-Commerce

·         Professional Liability

·         Agency

·         Torts

·         Business Organizations

·         Courts, Court Procedures  

Constitutional law is the law expressed in the U.S. Constitution and the various state constitutions.  The U.S. Constitution is the supreme law of the land (Article VI).  A law that is found to be in violation of the Constitution is unconstitutional and unenforceable.  The Tenth Amendment reserves to the states all powers that are not given to the federal government.  Each state has its own constitution and it is supreme within its own borders to the extent that it does not conflict with the U.S. Constitution.  

Business Ethics 

It is important for one to have solid foundation of business law and the legal environment; however, this alone is not enough.  One must also understand how to act in business dealings and transactions.  This is known as business ethics.  Ethics is basically the study of what is considered to be right or wrong behavior.  It focuses on moral principles and concepts such as fairness and right or wrong.  Business ethics deals with all of this in the business environment.  Business ethics is important to the longevity of a company as well as the overall well-being and self-value of the officers, directors, and employees.   

One of the most important ways to establish an effective ethical tone within the organization is to create an ethical code of conduct.  Distribute it to everyone. 




Cross, F. & Miller, R. (2009). West’s Legal Environment of Business. Mason, OH, Thomson South-Western.   


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