Law & Ethics in the Business Environment

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In United States v. Hall, 47 F.3d 1091 (11th Cir. 1995), the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals discussed the difference between a business and an individual’s reasonable expectation of privacy in the area around their home or business (called the curtilage). In Hall, a government agent seized a bag of shredded documents from a dumpster located on the property of Bet-Air, Inc. Hall filed a motion to suppress the evidence on the grounds that the search and seizure was a violation of the Fourth Amendment. Review United States v. Hall and discuss the following:

  • What was the Court of Appeal’s decision?
  • Was the search and seizure a violation of the Fourth Amendment? Why or why not?
  • Would the result have been different if the dumpster was on private property rather than on commercial property?
  • Suppose you were an executive at Bet-Air. What recommendations would you make to help Bet-Air assert an expectation of privacy in the dumpster?

Your initial response should be a minimum of 200 words.

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