The University of Southampton
Courses

LAWS2044 Remedies in Contract & Tort

Module Overview

This module combines study of remedies in contract and in tort. It is intended to be taught by reference to the remedies chapters in E McKendrick, Contract Law: Text, Cases, and Materials (6th ed, 2014), chs 22-24 and M Lunney & K Oliphant Tort Law: Text and Materials (5th ed, 2013), chs 16-18. The module will be based on two problem questions, introduced at the start of the module. The intention is to use these as the focus of the discussion of the formal and real world approaches to remedies in contract and tort. In addressing Contract, the explanation will focus on the difference between the orthodox basis for contract damages, i.e. the expectation interest, and the actual approach of the courts in hard cases e.g. the Blake case law on the measure of damages for deliberate breach. This will be combined with the empirical evidence on the limited use of these remedies in practice, compared to ‘self-help’ remedies that do not require court action, such as the ability to not perform. In addressing Tort, the module will consider both the formal approach to compensation in tort, and the relationship between tort, the civil legal aid system and the purported rise of a ‘compensation culture’. The module concludes by revisiting the problem questions set at the start of the semester in light of the issues considered in class.

Aims and Objectives

Module Aims

1. To give you a thorough knowledge and understanding of the main principles of the law of remedies for breach of contract and in tort, as it applies in England & Wales, and the policies and values which underpin it; this will include breach of contract, including termination for breach and damages; and the commission of a tort, including damages. 2. To provide you with a sound foundation for the study of other subjects based upon or involving the granting of judicial remedies in private law. 3. To enable you to develop skills of legal analysis and problem solving.

Learning Outcomes

Knowledge and Understanding

Having successfully completed this module, you will be able to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of:

  • the main principles that govern the operation of judicial remedies
  • the policy objectives and values underpinning the granting of judicial remedies in private law
  • the relationship between the formal rules of law governing the granting of judicial remedies and the operation of remedies in practice
  • existing areas of debate about what the law is and what it ought to be
Subject Specific Intellectual and Research Skills

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • analyse relevant legal materials, including case law and statutes
  • identify key legal and policy issues
  • apply principles of the law of remedies, with appropriate legal authorities, in the solutions of practical problems
  • draft legal advice upon such problems
  • critically appraise material including others’ arguments and offer solutions in existing areas of debate in remedies on contract and tort law
Transferable and Generic Skills

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • develop and present a written argument with appropriate evidence demonstrating an appreciation of academic integrity
  • locate and analyse relevant primary and secondary source materials
  • distinguish relevant from irrelevant materials
  • identify and explain how certain facts, in an actual or hypothetical situation, may be ambiguous or uncertain, and to demonstrate how, if they are clarified or made more specific, they could lead to a different analysis
  • apply information gained, through instruction and self-directed study, to inform, support or criticise a proposition

Syllabus

The syllabus starts with a consideration of two practical problems for consideration during the module, and ab overview of the law of remedies. It continues with detailed introductions to remedies on Contract and in Tort. It then challenges these orthodox introductions by reference to developments in the theory and practice of remedies (especially damages) in Contract and Tort. It concludes by applying the knowledge gained to the problem questions raised at the outset. Throughout the semester the module will cover the following aspects in lectures and seminars: • Introduction to Remedies; Problems for Consideration • Remedies in Contract: Termination / Damages & Specific Performance • Remedies in Contract: Termination for Breach & Damage (Market price rule) • Advanced Issues in Remedies: Damages: Interests protected / ‘Self-help’ and judicial remedies • Remedies in Tort: Scope & nature of damages; types of harm; structured settlements • Advanced Remedies in tort: Tort system and civil justice, ‘Compensation culture’ • Application to ‘Problem Questions’ • Reform & Revision.

Learning and Teaching

Teaching and learning methods

1-hour lectures will be twice-weekly and 2-hour seminars will be held fortnightly. You will be expected to attend all lectures and seminars. Seminars will involve a variety of exercises for which you will be expected to have prepared thoroughly.

TypeHours
Completion of assessment task30
Seminar8
Preparation for scheduled sessions60
Lecture22
Follow-up work10
Wider reading or practice20
Total study time150

Resources & Reading list

Lunney, M & K Oliphant (2013). Tort Law: Text and Materials. 

McKendrick, E. (2014). Contract Law: Text, Cases and Materials. 

Assessment

Formative

Essay

Summative

MethodPercentage contribution
Examination  (2 hours) 100%

Repeat

MethodPercentage contribution
Examination  (2 hours) 100%

Referral

MethodPercentage contribution
Examination  (2 hours) 100%

Repeat Information

Repeat type: Internal & External

Costs

Costs associated with this module

Students are responsible for meeting the cost of essential textbooks, and of producing such essays, assignments, laboratory reports and dissertations as are required to fulfil the academic requirements for each programme of study.

In addition to this, students registered for this module typically also have to pay for:

Textbooks

Recommended texts for this module are available in limited supply in the University Library and students may wish to purchase the core/recommended texts as appropriate. You are responsible for meeting the cost of one essential textbook. E McKendrick, Contract Law: Text, Cases, and Materials (6th ed, 2014) M Lunney & K Oliphant Tort Law: Text and Materials (5th ed, 2013) You will also meet the cost of producing such assignments as are required to fulfill the academic requirements for the module, e.g. you might wish to print out law journal articles, law cases, and lecture slides.

Please also ensure you read the section on additional costs in the University’s Fees, Charges and Expenses Regulations in the University Calendar available at www.calendar.soton.ac.uk.

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