|Antonio Brown in 2014 (by Brook Ward CC BY-NC 2.0)|
Notes and Questions
1. The case is filed in federal court in Florida, but the claims are all in state tort law. What is the basis for federal jurisdiction? Why do you think the complaint was filed on Brown's first scheduled day of practice with the Patriots?
2. The fact statement is lengthy, paragraphs 14 to 74. But federal practice requires only "notice pleading." Plaintiff's counsel gives up a lot of information about the plaintiff's theory of the case by putting more content than necessary into pleadings. So why so much ink on factual allegations?
3. There are five straightforward counts, or causes: two in battery, one in false imprisonment, one in IIED, and one in invasion of privacy.
- Notice how false imprisonment appears incidentally to other claims. Unlike MBE hypotheticals, few cases in real life support false imprisonment by itself.
- One of the battery counts is called "sexual battery (rape)." That's not really a distinct kind of battery in multistate common law, and it doesn't here appear to be covered by any specific statute, apart from common law. Nevertheless, a plaintiff may claim separate counts of tort upon discrete factual bases. What are the advantages of doing so?
- What challenges does the plaintiff face in proving IIED? Do the factual allegations get her there? Is there vulnerability on this count or any other to a 12(b)(6) motion?
4. The plaintiff seeks punitive damages, and the bases for that claim are stated within the counts. Some jurisdictions require that sufficient allegations to support a claim for punitive damages be stated in a separate count, even though "punitive damages" is a damages claim, not a tort. Can you discern the rule for punitive damages in the state jurisdiction, based on the allegations?