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Florida Standard Jury Instructions: Contract and Business Cases

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2nd Edition with 2016 Supplement
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In June 2013, the Florida Supreme Court authorized the publication of Florida Standard Jury Instructions: Contract and Business Cases. These instructions contain the "how to write instructions" appendix section of the Florida Supreme Court Committee's Standard Jury Instructions in Civil Cases, Sections 100, 200, 300, 600, 700, and 800 of those instructions, as well as Sections 400 and 500 that focus specifically on contract and business instructions. The Second Edition, now presented in an easy-to-use loose-leaf binder, updates the instructions with the changes incorporated after this title was originally produced.

Accordingly, the new business and contract-specific instructions are limited to Sections 400 and 500 of the instructions:

•  Section 400: Substantive Instructions, contains instructions for the principal issues the jury is to resolve and the legal principles governing the resolution of those issues, organized according to specific causes of action. These instructions are individually numbered under 416 in order to not conflict with the already existing instructions numbered 401 through 415 by the Florida Supreme Court Committee on Standard Jury Instructions in Civil Cases.

•  Section 500: Damages, contains instructions on damages arranged so that the various elements of damage proper for consideration in any given case may be selected. The model charges contain guidance on straightforward and complicated or multiple claim cases. These instructions are individually numbered under 504 to not conflict with the instructions already existing numbered 501 through 503 by the Florida Supreme Court Committee on Standard Jury Instructions in Civil Cases.

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Table of Contents

TABLE OF CONTENTS  

Preliminary Sections How to Use This Book

      A.   Getting Started

      B.   Using This Book for the First Time

      C.   Finding the Right Instruction

      D.   Ensuring the Instruction Is Current

      E.   Assembling a Set of Instructions

      F.   Drafting Case-Specific Instructions

      G.   Referring to Instructions by Number

      H.   Providing Written Instructions to the Jury

      I.   When Instructions Should Be Given

      J.   Included Instructions

      K.   Variance from Standard Instructions

      L.   Use of Special Verdicts

      M.   Understanding the Signals in This Book

Orders of the Supreme Court Creating and Revising These Instructions Committee Members

SECTION 100 — OATHS

      101.1   Oath of Jurors Before Voir Dire

      101.2   Oath of Juror After Voir Dire

      101.3   Oath of a Witness

      101.4   Oath of an Interpreter

SECTION 200 — PRELIMINARY INSTRUCTIONS

Qualifications Instruction

A.   During Jury Selection

      201.1   Description of the Case (Before Voir Dire)

      201.2   Introduction of Participants and Their Roles

      201.3   Explanation of the Voir Dire Process

B.   After Jury Selected and Sworn

      202.1   Introduction

      202.2   Explanation of the Trial Procedure

      202.3   Note-Taking by Jurors

      202.4   Juror Questions

      202.5   Jury to be Guided by Official English Translation/Interpretation

SECTION 300 — EVIDENCE INSTRUCTIONS

      301.1   Deposition Testimony, Interrogatories, Stipulated Testimony, Stipulations, and Admissions

      301.2   Instruction When First Item of Documentary, Photographic, or Physical Evidence is Admitted

      301.3   Instruction When Evidence is First Published to Jurors

      301.4   Instruction Regarding Visual or Demonstrative Aids

      301.5   Evidence Admitted for a Limited Purpose

      301.6   Jury to be Guided by Official English Translation/Interpretation

      301.7   Jury to be Guided by Official English Transcript of Recording in Foreign Language (Accuracy Not in Dispute)

      301.8   Jury to be Guided by Official English Translation/Interpretation — Transcript of Recording in Foreign Language (Accuracy in Dispute)

      301.9   Disregard Stricken Matter

      301.10   Instruction Before Recess

      301.11   Failure To Maintain Evidence Or Keep A Record

SECTION 400 — SUBSTANTIVE INSTRUCTIONS

      416.1   Breach of Contract — Introduction

      416.2   Third-Party Beneficiary

      416.3   Contract Formation — Essential Factual Elements

      416.4   Breach of Contract — Essential Factual Elements

      416.5   Oral or Written Contract Terms

      416.6   Contract Implied in Fact

      416.7   Contract Implied in Law

      416.8   Contract Formation — Offer

      416.9   Contract Formation — Revocation of Offer

      416.10   Contract Formation — Acceptance

      416.11   Contract Formation — Acceptance by Silence or Conduct

      416.12   Substantial Performance

      416.13   Modification

      416.14   Interpretation — Disputed Term(s)

      416.15   Interpretation — Meaning of Ordinary Words

      416.16   Interpretation — Meaning of Disputed Technical or Special Words

      416.17   Interpretation — Construction of Contract as a Whole

      416.18   Interpretation — Construction by Conduct

      416.19   Interpretation — Reasonable Time

      416.20   Interpretation — Construction Against Drafter

      416.21   Existence of Condition Precedent Disputed

      416.22   Occurrence of Agreed Condition Precedent

      416.23   Anticipatory Breach

      416.24   Breach of Implied Covenant of Good Faith and Fair Dealing

      416.25   Affirmative Defense — Mutual Mistake of Fact

      416.26   Affirmative Defense — Unilateral Mistake of Fact

      416.27   Affirmative Defense — Undue Influence

      416.28   Affirmative Defense — Fraud

      416.29   Affirmative Defense — Negligent Misrepresentation

      416.30   Affirmative Defense — Waiver

      416.31   Affirmative Defense — Novation

      416.32   Affirmative Defense — Statute of Limitations

      416.33   Affirmative Defense — Equitable Estoppel

      416.34   [Reserved for Future Use]

      416.35   Affirmative Defense — Judicial Estoppel

      416.36   Affirmative Defense — Ratification

      416.37   Goods Sold and Delivered

      416.38   Open Account

      416.39   Account Stated

      416.40   Money Had and Received

SECTION 500 — DAMAGES


      504.1   Introduction to Contract Damages

      504.2   Breach of Contract Damages

      504.3   Lost Profits

      504.4   Damages for Complete Destruction of Business

      504.5   Owner's Damages for Breach of Contract to Construct Improvements on Real Property

      504.6   Obligation to Pay Money Only

      504.7   Buyer's Damages for Breach of Contract for Sale of Real Property

      504.8   Seller's Damages for Breach of Contract to Purchase Real Property

      504.9   Mitigation of Damages

      504.10   Present Cash Value of Future Damages

      504.11   Nominal Damages

SECTION 600 — SUBSTANTIVE INSTRUCTIONS — GENERAL


      601.1   Weighing the Evidence

      601.2   Believability of Witnesses

      601.3   Jury to be Guided by Official English Translation/Interpretation

      601.4   Multiple Claims, Numerous Parties, Consolidated Cases

      601.5   Concluding Instruction (Before Final Argument)

SECTION 700 — CLOSING INSTRUCTIONS

SECTION 800 — SUPPLEMENTAL MATTERS

      801.1   Juror Questions During Deliberations

      801.2   Read-Back of Testimony

      801.3   Jury Deadlocked

      801.4   Instruction Upon Discharge of Jury

APPENDIX A: HOW TO WRITE AND USE JURY INSTRUCTIONS IN CIVIL CASES