You are to assume that you

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You are to assume that you are taking a business law class. You have a friend who has had a situation develop. He is confused and has several questions. Please explain things to him, in writing, so that he can make an informed decision. His name is Bob Lilly.

Rhoda Dendrum is the proud owner of a terrific plant store.  She and her partner, Kris Anthemum, opened the store in 1998. They sell plants and other accessories for indoor gardening. 

In July of 2011 Bob went into her store and was browsing in the plant food area. He slipped and fell. He has a serious injury, a concussion with resulting brain dysfunction. The case may be worth millions of dollars if the plaintiff prevails. Since this is a lawsuit based upon a slip and fall, it is a very difficult one and the odds of prevailing are less than 50/50.

Bob wants your advice. By the way, you are to assume that the hourly rate for an attorney in a case like this is $400 per hour.

How can he find a lawyer and how should he hire him or her? What about the rate, court costs? What are his options? Please discuss the methods of finding an attorney for this type of a case and the means by which he or she is hired or placed on retainer.

What will the owners of the plant shop do? If they do not have insurance and have to hire their own attorney what will they do or what should they do to hire an attorney?

What is the process by which a lawsuit is filed? What is a lawsuit? What does it contain? Make sure that you explain where or how lawsuits are filed, and why, and further what the process is to get the lawsuit and the defendant’s pleadings into court and into the other party’s hands.

He has heard about discovery in a civil suit. What is that? What types of discovery can happen in a case like this? Please fully explain the tools of discovery. Why are these significant? Please detail all of the forms of discovery and why they may or may not be important in a case like this. There were several witnesses to the fall in the store. Can they have discovery done in regards to their testimony? What if any discovery can be used to preserve this information?

What are the discovery issues for the owners? Should the owners think about costs and damages? If so, what are the bases for the balancing of the costs and the benefits.

Bob also wants to try and avoid a trial. Is there any way to resolve this without a trial? What is the concept of ADR and how does it work? What are the ADR options? Please fully advise him. He is concerned about the pretrial motions which will be heard at the In Limine conference. What is this about and why is it significant.

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(Top Tutor) Daniel C.
School: UC Berkeley
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