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This course continues students' introduction to the law of torts which began with Introducing Law and Justice where trespass to the person is covered. Other torts, notably trespass to goods and to land, and conversion, are covered in Principles of Private Law. Torts considers the part of the law of torts concerning liability to pay compensation for wrongfully caused injury, damage or loss, with an emphasis on liability caused by negligence, breach of statutory duty and nuisance. Both liability and remedies at common law and under the Civil Liability Act 2002 (NSW) are examined. Students are introduced to the complexities of interpreting statutory regimes, and their inter-relationship with common law precedent. The course critically examines the wider social implications of various approaches to compensating those who suffer personal injury, using some theoretical perspectives including law and economics, feminist theory and critical legal theory to do so

Main Topics

  • The role and function of tort law
  • Nuisance
  • Negligence – the duty of care in general
  • Negligence – duty – personal injury
  • Negligence – duty – defective property
  • Negligence – duty - pure economic loss
  • Negligence – duty – special defendants including public authorities, medical, landlords, parents and children etc.
  • Breach of duty
  • Causation and remoteness including eggshell skull rule and probabilistic causation
  • Concurrent liability – vicarious liability
  • Concurrent Liability - non-delegable duty
  • Defences to negligence
  • Assessment of Damages
  • Assessing the law of negligence – does it operate as it should?
  • Breach of Statutory Duty
Faculty Faculty of Law
Study Level


Offering Terms

Term 1, Term 2, Term 3



Indicative contact hours


Conditions for Enrolment

Course Outline

To access course outline, please visit:


Pre-2019 Handbook Editions

Access past handbook editions (2018 and prior)

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