Chris, Matt, and Ian, who live in California, have decided to start a business selling an aftershave lotion called Funny Face over the internet. They contract with Novelty Now Inc., a company based in Florida, to manufacture and distribute the product. Chris frequently meets with a representative from Novelty Now to design the product and to plan marketing and distribution strategies. In fact, to increase the profit margin, Chris directs Novelty Now to substitute PYR (a low-cost chemical emulsifier) for the compound in Novelty Now’s original formula. PYR is not FDA approved. Funny Face is marketed nationally on the radio and in newspapers, as well as on the web and Facebook. Donald Margolin, a successful CEO and public speaker, buys one bottle of Funny Face over the internet. After he uses it once, his face turns a permanent shade of blue. Donald Margolin and his company, Donald Margolin Empire Inc., file suit in the state of New York against Novelty Now Inc. and Chris, Matt, and Ian, alleging negligence and seeking medical costs and compensation for the damage to his face and business reputation. It is discovered that PYR caused Margolin’s skin discoloration. The website for Funny Face states that anyone buying their product cannot take Chris, Matt, and Ian to court. Novelty Now’s contract with the three men states that all disputes must be brought in the state of Florida.
Critical elements must be addressed:
A. Apply the rules of jurisdiction to the facts of this case and determine what jurisdiction(s) would be appropriate for Margolin’s lawsuit against Funny Face and Novelty Now, respectively. Consider federal court, state court, and long arm principles in your analysis.
B. Assume all parties agree to pursue alternative dispute resolution (ADR). Analyze the advantages and disadvantages of two types of ADR appropriate for this case. Be sure to define the characteristics of each in your answer.
C. Applying what you have learned about ADR, which type would each party (Funny Face, Novelty Now, and Margolin) prefer and why?
D. Apply concepts of criminal law and discuss whether or not corporations and/or corporate officers may be held liable for criminal acts.
E. Identify, per the classification of crimes in the text, any potential criminal acts by Funny Face and/or Novelty Now.
F. Assume the use of the emulsifier PYR, at the direction of Chris, is a criminal offense. Apply concepts of criminal law and discuss the potential criminal liability of Funny Face, Chris, Matt, Ian, and Novelty Now. Include support for your conclusion.
G. Apply at least three guidelines of ethical decision-making to evaluate ethical issues within the case study.
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