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Commercial Law - JURD7318
 Law Books

Faculty: Faculty of Law
School:  Faculty of Law
Course Outline: See below
Campus: Kensington Campus
Career: Postgraduate
Units of Credit: 6
EFTSL: 0.12500 (more info)
Indicative Contact Hours per Week: 4
Enrolment Requirements:
Prerequisite: LAWS1071, LAWS1072, LAWS2381, LAWS2382, LAWS1061; Corequisite:LAWS2010 Prerequisite: JURD7171, JURD7172, JURD7281, JURD7282, JURD7161; Corequisite:JURD7224
Excluded: LAWS3018
Fee Band: 3 (more info)
Further Information: See Class Timetable


Commercial Law JURD7318 is an Undergraduate Elective which introduces students to the general principles of commercial law, and builds on their foundation courses in Contracts, Business Associations 1 and Property, Equity & Trusts. It does not substantially overlap with specialised commercial options such as Law of Banking, Commercial Finance, Consumer Protection Law, Economic Analysis of Law, Insurance Law, Insolvency Law, International Trade Law, Interests in Securities, Regulation of Economic Activity, and Securities and Financial Services Regulation.

As a 6 unit elective, Commercial Law introduces students to the way in which general principles of common law, equity and statue law have developed to deal with the needs of commercial markets by focussing on:

• The law applicable to commercial sales of goods; and
• Agency law

The course, like the players in commercial markets, takes a problem-solving approach to subject matter, but also considers the broader policy dimensions of commercial law doctrines and practices. The problem solving approach investigates the way traders structure transactions to take best advantage of the protection offered by existing legal doctrines, and so illuminates the creative ways in which legal models or concepts are adapted to achieve pragmatic goals.

Recommended Prior Knowledge

See prerequisites and corequisites above.

Course Objectives

The aim of the course is to give students a broad understanding of commercial law principles in context, rather than a detailed knowledge of particular rules or statutes. Students will:
  • Acquire an understanding of the way in which the basic concepts they have already learned in foundational courses (in particular, in contracts and property) are applied in a commercial environment
  • Acquire an understanding of several (new) key legal doctrines of importance in commercial transactions
  • Develop skills in thinking laterally about legal problems so as to find alternative approaches to achieving commercial goals
  • Appreciate the role of law in facilitating and regulating market activity in an evolving commercial environment

Main Topics

  • Understanding the contract of sale and the multiple legal concepts of goods
  • Contractual and statutory terms of contracts of sale
  • Concepts of ownership: property, posession and transfer of risk
  • Performance and breach in the sale of goods
  • Contractual bases of agency law
  • Conduct after formation of the contract of agency
  • Agents and third parties
  • Remedies


Class participation (25%)
Mid-session examination (25%)
Final exam (50%)

Course Texts


  • Pearson, Fisher and Ali Commercial Law: Commentary and Materials (2004, Lawbook Co, Sydney)
  • Students should also purchase a copy of JURD7318 Supplementary Reading Materials from the UNSW Bookshop


  • Turner, Australian Commercial Law, (27th ed, 2009), Thomson Reuters
  • Traves, Commercial Law, (2nd ed, 2009), LexisNexis Butterworths

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© The University of New South Wales (CRICOS Provider No.: 00098G), 2004-2011. The information contained in this Handbook is indicative only. While every effort is made to keep this information up-to-date, the University reserves the right to discontinue or vary arrangements, programs and courses at any time without notice and at its discretion. While the University will try to avoid or minimise any inconvenience, changes may also be made to programs, courses and staff after enrolment. The University may also set limits on the number of students in a course.