LEGAL ASPECTS OF BUSINESS
Very often the law and morality do not coincide. Consequently, a contradiction between the law and morality is usually a controversial issue. This contradiction seems to have no right or wrong positions; however, it is possible to justify a specific separate case. Sometimes breaking the law in morality’s sake is accepted. In fact, such a breach is allowed by another law. Thus, morality still depends on the law. Nevertheless, morality does not lose its essence if it is not worth breaking the law. In contrast, morality is a subjective phenomenon, and it may vary while the law is the same for every single citizen. What is more, absence of action; therefore, breaking the law may be regarded as criminal negligence. A distinct example can provide itself a statement that the law may in certain circumstances allow variations in the standard of care. These standards should result from the physical conditions in which the act takes place and exclude those factors, which describe a defendant rather than his or her actions. In fact, any illegal action should have a legal excuse if this action was done in order to save someone’s life or health. However, this action should not put at risk lives of other individuals. Besides that, a case when no actions have to be taken may occur, as well. In other words, any other action worsens the physical condition of an individual. All in all, as it was mentioned previously, each case should be justified separately. Therefore,it is necessary to review several cases in accordance with relevant laws. It should be noted that the following conclusions will show certain relations between morality and law, but these relations are not universal. The conclusions will just outline a number of features, which characterise the reason for a particular judgement.
To begin with, it is necessary to discuss the case, which provides an example how the law can excuse a defendant for his or her not legal actions in sake of some moral values. An individual N was driving home. Suddenly, he noticed a lonely pedestrian, which unexpectedly fell to the ground. In order to give first aid to a pedestrian , an individual N took him to his car and drove to the nearest hospital, which is located in a couple of miles from the place of the accident. An individual N was in a certain hurry, and that is why he did not stop at red light on his way. Several traffic police squads noticed that and started chasing the car. When traffic police finally found an individual N, he explained the situation, and a doctor, who received the unconscious pedestrian, witnessed that it was really true. As a result, an individual N was not arrested or even fined. Moreover, a doctor promised to inform a local newspaper about such considerate action.
Therefore, an individual N was not punished since his not legal action was the only one way out for saving a pedestrian’s life. It is worth mentioning that an individual N actually avoided negligence by his proactive reaction to the accident. All in all, an individual N had only one way to save a pedestrian’s life. He might have called an ambulance by mobile phone, but it would have taken more time so that a pedestrian could die. Besides, it is important to admit that age and qualification of an individual N should be taken into account. In this case, age has nothing to do with a legal excuse, because an individual was driving his car. The fact, occupation of a defendant matters. In case it was a doctor or emergency service worker, driving a pedestrian to a hospital would be wrong, because an individual N would have to use their in-depth knowledge in the first aid, which is not known to average citizens.
Quite another outcome of this case could be if an individual N was a pedestrian, as well. For example, an individual N noticed a pedestrian having a heart attack, and then mugged some of the other pedestrians in order to take a mobile phone for calling an ambulance. In this case, an individual N would be arrested or at least sentenced to a community service. Actually, an individual N had some other alternatives in this situation. He should have just asked other people on the street to call an ambulance. In this way, someone else could come for help.
Judging the Action
Therefore, a defendant will be accused of variation in standard of care if this variation harms someone else and any other way to follow the standard was possible. In other words, variation in standard of care is legally excused only in case of its being not harmful to the society and separate people. All in all, the evidence from both cases suggests that negligent actions themselves should not be claimed as not legal. Conclusively, a certain situation and circumstances, in which a negligent action was taken, should not be considered as not legal. Thus, the same action can be differently judged due to a particular situation. To sum up, it is necessary to say that the variance in standard of care is supposed to be judged in accordance with a situation and circumstances, in which an illegal action was taken. To be more exact, the variance in standard of care can be legally excused only in case this action was only one way to take care of a particular individual. In consequence, actions, which had some alternatives, should be charged according to a relevant law. What is more, the variance in standard of care does not have to harm nobody. In other words, an illegal action for the sake of a particular morality value should not violate another morality value or the same value, but in a relation to the other individual.
Direct Impact to Citizen
Though, sometimes it occurs that an individual can be accused of negligence, because of wrong advice or instructions given to the other individual. In fact, this issue is also controversial as a contradiction between the law and morality. It is known that everyone is allowed to express his or her opinion in publicity, except some specific topics. In other words, any expressed opinion should not be accepted or followed. Actually, words do not mean a real intention very often, because words can be said due to affection, fear, or any other factor, which makes a certain statement vague. Nevertheless, someone’s decision, opinion, or judgement is needed very often. For example, a doctor identifies a certain diagnosis. Therefore, the whole life of a patient could depend on a doctor’s judgement of a disease. In case the doctor prescribed a treatment, which resulted in worsening of the patient’s health, a doctor would be responsible for a duty breach. Hence, in this case, a defendant is responsible for his words, because they had a direct impact on the other citizen. What is more, it is also important to note that a false statement could occur due to certain circumstances. To be more exact, a defendant judged the situation by current circumstances, which were logical, reasonable and just for claim of a particular fact. Further, these circumstances changed, and initially reasonable advice became a false one. All in all, this aspect of the law is a controversial issue and should be discussed critically. A suitable example of described controversy can suggest the case of an accountant named Badsum, who gave his friend Claire a false advice about the value of shares in Donut Delight PLC. Before a discussion, it is also important to admit that the following conclusions reflect possible features of the right judgement of the case. In other words, the following conclusions are not totally applicable to the similar cases, but they describe what the law take into account for judgement cases of illegal misstatements.
As the case study says, Claire is an old friend of Badsum, and she asked him to give advice about investment abilities of Donut Delight PLC. The advice occurred to be false, but some circumstances are supposed to be taken into consideration. To begin with, Bansum mentioned in his email to Claire that his advice should be taken as a strongly subjective, because it is just his opinion. Nevertheless, claiming that the opinion is strongly personal does not exclude the fact that this opinion is expressed by a professional in a sphere, to which this opinion is directly related. Actually, Badsum failed to do his duty, which is to give legal advice. What is more, Badsum was aware that Claire is relying on him. Hence, if Badsum was not sure about giving relevant advice, he should have not agreed to help Claire. In addition, Badsum admitted in his email that he gives advice “for old times’ sake” so that he was glad to help Claire, and his intention was friendly. As a result, Badsum actually deceived his old friend. Furthermore, the advice by Badsum was followed by Claire’s friends as well. It is also worth saying that giving information, which led to a loss or any other harm, should not be regarded as negligence. It can be explained by the fact that information is quite wider scope than a certain statement. Therefore, information can be misunderstood, even though it is truly relevant. Actually, Badsum was asked for accountant advice, which presupposes claiming a particular statement. Judging by this situation, Badsum definitely has to be legally responsible for misstatement. In contrast, it is important to say that some circumstances considerably influence judgement of this case and contradict facts, which are against Badsum.
Advice from Badsum
First of all, it is necessary to pay attention how Badsum was asked to give his advice. As the case study says, Claire just contacts Badsum and asked for help as his old friend. Accordingly, it means that Badsum was asked for help as a friend, but not as an accountant. What is more, there were none of legal documents, which prove that Badsum had to provide Claire with legal advice. Furthermore, Claire should have contacted Badsum by his working telephone or at least working email so that he would be a representative of particular services or representative of a certain organization, which provides these services. In addition, it is worth admitting that a false state of mind is not supposed to be regarded as an illegal action. Doubtless, that very often someone’s opinion is treated as a statement or even a fact. In fact, opinion is a state of mind. Therefore, an opinion cannot be false, because it is closely stuck to an individual perception of the issue. Consequently, personal feelings and perceptions of a defendant are not sufficient for claiming them a fraud. In addition, Badsum gave his advice for free so that he did not have any motives to deceive his friend.
Taking this into consideration, it should be also admitted that Badsum’s words about old times friendship have an opposite connotation. To begin with, by saying “for old times’ sake” Badsum emphasized that he would give an advice as a friend rather than officially represented accountant. In other words, Badsum promised to help Claire by usage of his knowledge in accounting with no charges for Claire. What is more, Badsum also admitted in his email that his advice is just his opinion about Donut Delight PLC. In other words, Badsum does not guarantee the relevance of his advice. In contrast, Badsum took a responsibility of such degree and was expected to help. Nevertheless, as Badsum was acting as a friend rather than an accountant, and by admitting that his advice is just a personal opinion, he implied a promise to do his best in order to help Claire.
Finally, it is to be outlined that negligence in misstatement is supposed to be judged by facts, which prove that a certain statement was expressed under official circumstances. To be more precise, every single statement, which can be regarded as an evidence of negligence, should be witnessed by a legal document, which proves that a defendant could be legally charged for a false statement. In consequence, it means that any statement does not totally imply a particular intention. Therefore, it should be admitted that any opinion or statement do not have to be taken as the only right ones. What is more, someone’s opinion should not be regarded as a reason for acting in a particular way, even though this opinion is authoritative.
About the Author
Nancy Bauman is a financial analyst and accounting expert. She is also an expert on business ethics and is constantly participating in university conferences as a member of the Educated Youth Movement. She regularly contributes articles related to business and loans at advanced-writer.com