Employment Contract Law Case Study

Good Essays
Employment contracts are fundamental agreements used in the workplace to determine the guidelines of an individual's employment. There are three fundamental cases which have affected the guidelines of employment contracts during their respective times, Lochner vs New York (1905), Coppage vs Kansas (1915), and West Coast Hotel Co vs Parrish (1937). The rulings in each of the three cases has allowed for new interpretations of the law, by the governing body. Three philosophers Machan, Cohen and Fried have agreeing and opposing views on each of these court rulings. Each philosopher has a different understanding of each case and whether they strike down an individual's personal liberty or whether they promote it.
The first case, Lochner vs New
…show more content…
The courts ruled in favor of Coppage, establishing that liberty of contract was a fundamental right, and it is not the right of government to ensure equal bargaining powers. Fried would disagree with this ruling because he believes that contracts are binding and have to be followed. Coppage added the clause banning labor unions to the already agreed upon contracts causing there to be a breach in contract. Under Fried’s understanding of contracts and promises, this would make Coppage unethical and dishonest. This breach according to Fried’s views would also allow the employee to receive some type of reparation for the breach in contract. Last this ruling doesn’t support freedom of contract under Fried’s view because it puts the employee at an unfair disadvantage while negotiating. Under Machan’s view of a contract, if the terms of the contract were altered, a new contract would have to be written up and agreed upon. Therefore under Machan’s view this isn’t a violation of an individual’s personal liberty, and individual can do as they seem fit. Employees have the liberty to make their own decisions with the new clause and decide if they want to quit the job or want to stay. Unlike Coppage vs Kansas the government sometimes does intervene on the side of the employee and …show more content…
Cohen would agree with this knowing that without restrictions on contracts those who are underprivileged could be taken advantage of. Cohen views the disadvantaged workers as not having bargaining power between them and their large employers. This intervention promotes general freedoms for those who are easily taken advantage of. In this case, the individual’s are either getting paid under minimum wage or they’re out of a job. He would view the government’s role in this type of situation as being one of protecting workers by ensuring that there is a standardized living wage. Fried, on the other hand, would view the ruling in this case as incorrect. He would argue that a contract was agreed upon by both parties, and therefore the West Coast Hotell should not have to pay minimum wage because the other party agreed to their current pay in the initial contract. This mutually agreed upon contract promotes future freedom for the employer because it decreases uncertainty. Fried would view this type of intervention by the government as an overreach of power on their

Related Documents

  • Decent Essays

    Devlin and Dworkin agree that not every individual is capable of giving consent and there should be restrictions of what individuals are capable of such, this would allow legal intervention in some of the acts Devlin considers immoral. Public morality is something that comes from justification not from a reasonable man making decisions for society as a whole. Although if a society has an overwhelming opposition to an act that Dworkin would deem as justificatory then there should be a right to overturn such act otherwise it could potentially be more harmful to society than prohibiting…

    • 1204 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    Kant believes that every person has rights and their own autonomy, so lying to them is treating them as a mere thing. There is no valid reason to lie about this action other than the fact Pat most likely regrets it, and fears losing Chris. Therefore, this maxim cannot be applied as a universal law, because it is rationally incoherent to make a maxim a law that is based off of self-interest. Since it cannot be applied universally, and telling Chris the truth would have greater moral worth, it is concluded that according to Kant’s Categorical Imperative Pat should tell Chris that she cheated out of respect and to follow her duty to him as his significant…

    • 1356 Words
    • 6 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    This behavior is not only unethical, but illegal. It is not ethical to cheat someone out of the time that they worked because you want to make your bonus. I would confront the manager, telling them that it is not ethical to change someone’s time clock in such as fashion, even if it is to make their and mine own bonus. I would suggest instead that it is made into policy that as an employee that you cannot clock in earlier than your scheduled time without a managers consent. I would try and reason with my GM and help them see the error in the practice and how it is both unethical and illegal.…

    • 737 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    Cultural relativism says all one has to do is check if their action is in agreement with their societal code to determine if their action is right or wrong. But what if their societal codes are wrong? “Cultural Relativism not only forbids us from criticizing the codes of other societies; it also stops us from criticizing our own” (Rachels 34). Rachels final argument against cultural relativism is that it destroys the idea of moral progress and social change. We could not say that Martin Luther King, Jr. changed society for the better as that would be judging the social standards of another time.…

    • 412 Words
    • 2 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    Arnold & Hartman (2005) goes further to say that “if persons have a right to freedom and subsistence, then, at a minimum, other persons have an obligation to refrain from interfering with those rights” (p. 212). Therefore in the terms of utilitarianism, the shutdown of factories are, in some cases, morally unjustified as they have more potentially harmful consequences for those…

    • 1199 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    The opinions of the minority are not always right; neither are the opinions of the majority always right. Therefore, both sides must receive an equal chance to express their ideas. The presence of legal systems for attending to matters of unfair legislations does not necessarily ensure that such matters would be attended. Undeniably, it would be illogical to believe that the government would be quick to improve its own disorder yet it neglected to identify the disorder to begin with; civil disobedience is essential. Additionally, civil disobedience may be set aside as the pis aller but this would defer justice and consequently form a bigger issue (Lefkowitz 212).…

    • 1009 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    Case Study: The Body Shop

    • 1903 Words
    • 8 Pages

    If I was the supplier, I would not know which department to supply to which would affect my own sales and I may have to cancel my contract with that business as an unbalanced structure will only cause me harm. We have to understand that a business should be properly managed to have an optimum working environment in which the employees, customers and supplies are…

    • 1903 Words
    • 8 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    Question 1: Duty is the necessity to act out of reverence for the law; it is obligation regardless of inclination. I disagree that the point of these two examples is to show that duty is only present when a person lacks all inclination to do the right thing. Kant provides examples of times when duty is clearly the only motivating factor but that does not mean duty can only be the motivation in people who lack inclination. In this example, self-motivation and the possible joy caused by a given action had to be stripped away in to reveal the motivating factor of duty because it is difficult to determine why people do what they do without breaking things down. This example is not meant to be an accurate representation of life.…

    • 1902 Words
    • 8 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    People don’t like being judged, which results in people not taking responsibility for their actions. I disagree with how Fromm relies on the comparison of our options to our humanistic conscious, morals and the laws of humanity to guide our actions. What if our values are subpar? If someone has little to no morality and believes that he is bettering the future of humanity with his actions, then according to Fromm’s logic, they have justified themselves by obeying their personal morals and how they interpreted the laws of humanity. This could mean that a seral killer felt that his actions were justified as an act of freedom against authority.…

    • 1245 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    While also acknowledging this need, he is also in favor of the benefits of society at large without the benefits to shareholders. Friedman’s exposition is that in order to be good people we must do things that are morally correct and not cheat the shareholders. In the 1970’s Friedman discussed his knowledge on the social responsibility of businesses. He said that the main purpose…

    • 1078 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Decent Essays