BA-225 Business Law


8 a.m. - 9:30 a.m. - Tues/Thurs. via Zoom Classroom

Classroom meeting link: ZOOM CLASSROOM via Moodle

Fall 2020 / 8-9:20 am Tues/Thurs live via Zoom

We will hold class online in real time 8-9:20 am Tuesdays and Thursdays via Zoom.
You must have a camera on during the entire class so I can see you and call on you.
The link to your Zoom classroom is posted on your course Moodle page.

Course description: Introduction to the American legal system (sources of law and legal process); forms of business (sole proprietorships, partnerships, LLCs and Corporations); contract law; agency; employment law; torts; products liability; property law; wills and trusts; business ethics.

Course Objectives: Upon completion of this course, the student should be able to do the following:

  1. Summarize the four sources of American Law and how they relate

  2. Outline the court system and explain jurisdiction

  3. Evaluate ADR

  4. Distinguish intentional torts, negligence and product liability.

  5. Identify what intellectual property (IP) refers to and how IP rights are protected.

  6. Compare civil vs. criminal law

  7. Explain the importance of business ethics.

  8. Name and discuss the 4 basic elements of an enforceable contract.

  9. Examine the remedies where there is a breach of contract.

  10. Compare and contrast sales law (UCC Art. 2) vs. common law contracts.

  11. Identify some consumer protection laws.

  12. Summarize the two basic types of negotiable instruments and why they are important to business.

  13. Describe some of the ways creditors can protect their rights.

  14. Summarize the different types of bankruptcy.

  15. Evaluate how employment "at will" has been changed by statutes.

  16. Develop an understanding of entrepreneur's options, especially business forms and financing.

  17. Distinguish personal property from real property.

Instructor: Shawn T. Newman, J.D. (short bio & contact information)
Office Hours: As noted above, I will be online before and after class. The best to communicate with me via email at I try to respond to emails within 24 hours.

Book and Resources:

  • Book: Roger Leroy Miller, Business Law Today: The Essentials: Text & Summarized Cases 12th Edition (2020) ISBN: 978-0-357-03817-8 An eBook is also available.

Assessment and Grading: 800 points total

  • 5 Exams @ 100 points/each

  • 1 Midterm @ 100

  • 1 Final @ 100 points

  • Class presentations and discussions: 100 points. The class will be divided into teams. Each team will be responsible for presenting The Business Law Critical Thinking Group Assignment. Team presentations will be evaluated by me, classmates and fellow team members. See: Link to the Review Evaluation forms below. Here is the grading rublic

Teaching Philosophy: My job is to help you develop legal literacy, knowledge and skills that will help you succeed in your life and career. It is your responsibility to be prepared for class and to complete all assignments on time. I do not give re-dos or incompletes. Miss a deadline and you will receive no credit. I have listed reading assignments, exams and resources for each week. Please note that I reserve the option to modify the schedule and frequently add content to the syllabus based on current events. Classes are conducted like a business meeting. (See Expectations Power Points below). Students must have a camera on during the Zoom classes so I can see your face! You must also PRE-READ the material for that day's class. Dress appropriately and come prepared to engage!

Inclusivity Statement: We understand that our members represent a rich variety of backgrounds and perspectives. Saint Martin’s is committed to providing an atmosphere for learning that respects diversity. While working together to build this community we ask all members to:

  • share their unique experiences, values and beliefs

  • be open to the views of others

  • honor the uniqueness of their colleagues

  • appreciate the opportunity that we have to learn from each other in this community

  • value each other’s opinions and communicate in a respectful manner

  • keep confidential discussions that the community has of a personal (or professional) nature

  • use this opportunity together to discuss ways in which we can create an inclusive environment in this course and across the SMU community

Access & Accomodations:

Your experience in this class is important to me. If you need course adaptations or accommodations because of a disability, contact SMU’s Disability Support Services ASAP. If you have already established accommodations with Disability Support Services for Students (DSS), please communicate your approved accommodations to me at your earliest convenience so we can discuss your needs in this course. If you have not yet established services through DSS, but have a temporary health condition or permanent disability that requires accommodations (conditions include but not limited to; mental health, attention-related, learning, vision, hearing, physical or health impacts), you are welcome to contact DSS at 360-438-4580 or or DSS offers resources and coordinates reasonable accommodations for students with disabilities and/or temporary health conditions. Reasonable accommodations are established through an interactive process between you, your instructor(s) and DSS. It is the policy and practice of Saint Martin’s University to create inclusive and accessible learning environments consistent with federal and state law.

Sexual Misconduct/Sexual Harassment Reporting:

Saint Martin’s University is committed to providing an environment free from sex discrimination, including sexual harassment and sexual violence. There are Title IX/sexual harassment posters around campus that include the contact information for confidential reporting and formal reporting. Confidential reporting is where you can talk about incidents of sexual harassment and gender-based crimes including sexual assault, stalking, and domestic/relationship violence. This confidential resource can help you without having to report your situation to the formal reporting process through unless you request that they make a report. Additional information and or reports can be made to the Title IX Team here on campus through the Dean of Students, Associate VP of Human Resources, Public Safety, or the Provost/Vice President of Academic Affairs. Please be aware that in compliance with Title IX and under the Saint Martin’s University policies, educators must report incidents of sexual harassment and gender-based crimes including sexual assault, stalking, and domestic/relationship violence. If you disclose any of these situations in class, on papers, or to me personally, I am required to report it.

Academic Honesty/Professionalism: Cheating is academic dishonesty. Do not copy other students' assignments, have someone else write your papers or plagiarize published or unpublished materials, or submit work previously graded by other instructors. Students will be graded not only on their academic success, but on professional conduct as well. Students who fail to show professionalism in their academic or personal conduct (e.g. constant tardiness, excessive absences, and/or other unprofessional behavior) may earn a lower letter grade than the total of semester accumulated points, or may even earn a failing grade. SMU Academic Policies and Procedures regarding academic dishonesty can be found in the undergraduate student catalog.

University Sanctioned Activities: If a student is absent from class due to university sanctioned activities, such as sports, it is the student's responsibility to request that the absence be excused in advance of the activity, otherwise, the absence will be recorded as unexcused. Absent students are responsible for catching up with the class, and if any assignments are due on the day of the absence, it is the student's responsibility to turn in the assignments on time (prior to class). Assignments may be submitted as an attachment to email:

Center for Student Success: The Center for Student Success offers free academic services for all Saint Martin’s students at all levels of achievement in pursuit of intellectual growth and academic excellence. The Center offers peer tutoring, study support, first year/early major advising, and writing support. Please investigate ways in which to support your learning. The Learning Center is home to the STEM Study Center which provides subject area peer tutoring (science, technology, engineering, and math as well as business/ accounting/economics, and world languages). At the Writing Center, students meet with trained peer readers to discuss their academic, personal and professional writing. The Advising Center works with students with academic advising, connecting with campus support resources, transition and self-exploration guidance, personalized academic improvement plans, learning workshops, and support major change. The Advising Center staff also works closely with the University’s Early Alert Program [Saints Care]— a referral system that supports student success. Saint Martin’s Disability Support Services is located in the Center for any student with a disability who is interested in using their accommodations. These students can connect with the Disability Support Services Coordinator who will evaluate the documentation, determine appropriate accommodations, and serve as a learning resource and advocate with assisting students in meeting their academic goals.

Syllabus will be on Moodle - log in here