IRAC is a critical thinking method used to evaluate legal disputes. IRAC stands for issue, rule, application, and conclusion. To solve a legal problem, you first have to examine the facts of the case. Once you have ascertained the facts, you need to determine what legal issues arise out of the facts. For example, based on the facts, what law has been violated? Next, you must use critical thinking skills to analyze, examine, evaluate, interpret, and apply the law to the case facts. Finally, you reach a conclusion about the probable outcome of the case.
Consider the following example application of the IRAC method:
Scenario: On her way to work, Mary Beth decided to drop by the corner store to grab an energy drink. Because the bus lane in front of the store was free, she parked her car there while she ran in. When Mary Beth exited the store, a city bus was waiting for her to move so it could unload passengers. To Mary Beth’s dismay, she received a ticket from a parking enforcement officer who was patrolling the neighborhood. Mary Beth argued that there was no bus present when she entered the store and that she had been in the store for only a few minutes when the bus arrived. She argued that the parking enforcement officer should cancel the ticket.
Ordinance 01.00 – Stopping, Standing, or Parking in Bus Stop Zones states that no person shall stop, stand, or park a passenger vehicle in an officially designated bus stop, except where the driver makes a temporarily stop to load or unload passengers. The driver may not load or unload passengers, if it will interfere with any buses’ ability to access the bus stop zone.
Issue = Did Mary Beth violate the city bus stop ordinance?
Rule = The driver may not load or unload passengers, if it will interfere with any buses’ ability to access the bus stop zone.
Analysis = Mary Beth parked in a bus stop zone and her vehicle subsequently blocked a city bus that was attempting to unload passengers.
Conclusion = Mary Beth violated the city bus stop ordinance, so the parking enforcement’s ticket was appropriate.
1. Review the rubric to make sure you understand the criteria for earning your grade.
2.Read “How to Raise Your Law School Exam Grades by Using the IRAC Method the Right Way.”
3. Consider the following scenario:
Simon lives in Anytown, which is located in State A. He operates a successful food truck business and is always trying something new for his menu. After inquiries from customers, Simon decided to add frog legs as an appetizer. He bought a fishing license and set out on May 2nd to his favorite fishing hole. He caught more than 50 bull frogs using his bow and arrow. As Simon was returning to his car, a wildlife officer stopped him and asked to see his fishing license. Simon complied.
4. Using the IRAC method, apply the city ordinance below to the fact pattern to predict whether or not the wildlife officer will ticket Simon for hunting bull frogs.
Anytown Fishing Ordinance
The following rules must be followed for hunting bull frogs. Violators will be ticketed.
i. A current fishing license is required to hunt bull frogs.
ii. Bull frog hunting season commences at midnight on May 1st and concludes at midnight on November 30th each year.
iii. Bull frogs may be hunted by hand or hook and hand only.
iv. Capture limit is 10 bull frogs per 24-hour period.
v. Possession may not exceed 20 bull frogs at any given time.
5. Prepare a one- to two-page response containing 250 to 500 words. Follow APA formatting, including use of 12-point Times New Roman font. Correct use of citations and references is required.
6.Refer to OCLS APA Writing Styles Guides for questions on APA formatting.
7. When you have completed your assignment, save a copy for yourself and submit a copy to your instructor by the end of the workshop. For more information on Evaluating Legal Disputes see this: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alternative_dispute_resolution
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