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Full-Text Articles in Law

Marriage As Relational Contract, Elizabeth S. Scott, Robert E. Scott Jan 1998

Marriage As Relational Contract, Elizabeth S. Scott, Robert E. Scott

Faculty Scholarship

The evolution of marriage from a relationship based on status to one that is regulated by contractual norms achieved a milestone of sorts recently with the enactment of the Louisiana Covenant Marriage Act. Under this statute, couples entering marriage can choose to have the termination of their relationship regulated under conventional no-fault divorce rules, or they can voluntarily undertake a greater commitment to their marriage. For couples who select covenant marriage, either party can terminate the relationship on fault grounds, but unilateral termination of the marriage is available only after a substantial waiting period. The principal impact of the statute ...


Bloomer Girl Revisited Or How To Frame An Unmade Picture, Victor P. Goldberg Jan 1998

Bloomer Girl Revisited Or How To Frame An Unmade Picture, Victor P. Goldberg

Faculty Scholarship

Nearly all contracts casebooks feature the saga of Shirley MacLaine's suit against Twentieth Century Fox arising from the cancellation of the proposed film Bloomer Girl. None really get the story right. To be fair, none try. The case is a vehicle for exploring the obligation of the victim of the breach of an employment contract to take alternative employment. If MacLaine refused an offer of alternative employment that was not "different and inferior," her failure to mitigate would mean that the earnings she would have received would be offset against the damages; so, asked the court, was the alternative ...


Bloomer Girl Revisited Or How To Frame An Unmade Picture, Victor P. Goldberg Jan 1998

Bloomer Girl Revisited Or How To Frame An Unmade Picture, Victor P. Goldberg

Faculty Scholarship

The standard analysis of Parker v. Twentieth Century Fox follows the court in focusing on whether the substitute employment offered Shirley MacLaine was "different and inferior" from that which she had initially contracted for. That, this paper argues, was the wrong question. The court managed to produce the right outcome, but through convoluted reasoning that failed to recognize the essential feature of the contract. The contract had a "pay-or-play" provision by which the studio, in effect, purchased an option on her time; they would pay her to be ready to make a particular film, but they made no promise to ...


In Search Of Best Efforts: Reinterpreting Bloor V. Falstaff, Victor P. Goldberg Jan 1998

In Search Of Best Efforts: Reinterpreting Bloor V. Falstaff, Victor P. Goldberg

Faculty Scholarship

Bloor v. Falstaff has become the standard casebook example of judicial interpretation of a "best efforts" clause. The court held that Falstaff's lackluster promotional efforts for Ballantine beer violated its "best efforts covenant, a result that has met with near universal approval. However, when the problem is properly framed, the decision is clearly wrong. The court's failure to consider the purpose of the transaction led it astray. Falstaff almost certainly did not breach its obligation.

The essential feature of the contract is that Ballantine was exiting the beer business and was making a one-shot sale of some of ...