UWA Handbook 2017

Unit details

LAWS4103 Contract

Credit 6 points
(see Timetable)
Semester 1UWA (Perth)Face to face
Content Students develop an ability to read, understand and apply the law of contract through the study of decided cases and contractual terms. Although this unit also studies legislation that impacts on contract law in Australia, most of the law is found in common law cases so this is the primary material it focuses on. The unit begins with an examination of the rules relating to the formation, terms and construction of contractual terms. This includes concepts of offer and acceptance, intention to create legal relations, privity and contract formalities. Students understand the need for sufficiency of consideration and the operation and consequences of estoppel. They continue mapping the life of a contract by investigating how contracts come to an end through agreement, performance, breach and repudiation, and frustration of contract. Although contract remedies will be studied in a dedicated Remedies unit, students are introduced to restitutionary claims for unjust enrichment. They study the provisions in national consumer legislation (the Australian Consumer Law) that impact on the law of contract, in particular the law of misleading or deceptive conduct. Students analyse case law, extract legal principles from judicial decisions and clearly state them, and analyse and solve hypothetical legal problems relating to the topics covered.
Class activities may include an introduction to principles of negotiation in formation of contracts and resolution of contractual disputes.
Outcomes Students are able to (1) demonstrate an understanding of (a) contracts within the law of obligations; (b) the formation of contracts; (c) the primacy of the expectation interest; (d) the parties to a contract, the terms and construction of contracts; (e) performance, termination and discharge of contracts; (f) actions in debt and actions for breach; (g) restitutionary claims; and (h) the impact of national consumer legislation on the common law of contract; (2) demonstrate a developing understanding of the socioeconomic influences on the development of contract law, the relationships between the common law of contract and equity, contract law and restitution, and common law and statutes, and an appreciation of the practical relevance of contemporary 'sources' of law in addition to domestic law; (3) recognise and evaluate developments in or affecting the law of contract that promote ethical practice in a commercial setting; (4) (a) analyse a hypothetical fact scenario and identify and articulate the relevant facts and legal issues raised; (b) make correct use of case law precedents; (c) apply, at an introductory level, case law and statutory principles to complex legal problems to reach reasoned conclusions; (d) generate and evaluate alternative theoretical, legal, ethical and practical responses to legal issues and make appropriate, justified and reasoned choices from the alternatives; and (e) demonstrate cognitive and creative skills in approaching contractual legal issues and generating appropriate responses; (5) (a) write an opinion on a hypothetical legal problem and/or a critical analysis of a case in a clear and concise manner using plain English; and (b) communicate effectively and meaningfully in tutorials and small groups; (6) demonstrate an ability to identify the elements of principles negotiation in contractual settings and how they might influence a negotiated outcome; (7) develop an appreciation of the role of law and lawyers in negotiating contracts and the resolution of contractual disputes; (8) identify and apply the elements of principled negotiation and contract law to a contractual scenario; and (9) communicate effectively during an in-class debrief session and reflection exercise based on participation in a negotiation role play.
Assessment Typically this unit is assessed in the following ways: (1) assignment; (2) seminar/tutorial attendance and participation; and (3) examination. Further information is available in the unit outline.

Supplementary assessment is not available in this unit.
Unit Coordinator(s) Associate Professor Aviva Freilich
Unit rules
Co-requisites: LAWS4101 Legal Process
Contact hours Approximately 52 hours per semester over 11 weeks.
Unit Outlinehttp://www.unitoutlines.law.uwa.edu.au/Units/LAWS4103/SEM-1/2017
Note This unit will commence in week three of semester.

Paterson, J., Robertson, A. and Duke, A. Principles of Contract Law, latest edn: Law Book Co. of Australasia 2016

Paterson, J., Robertson, A. and Duke, A. Contract Cases and Materials, latest edn: Law Book Co. of Australasia 2016

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