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The Student Lawyer

The Law Degree

The LLB is the undergraduate law degree. In case you were wondering what it stands for, Legum Baccalaureus means ‘Bachelor of Law’ in Latin. It takes a minimum of 3 years to complete. The first 2 years have quite strict, core subjects to introduce you to the different types of law, and then it starts to broaden as you start to figure out your specialities and get to pick electives.

Core modules in the law degree:

Public Law

Public Law look at Constitutional Law, Administrative Law and Human Rights Law.

Many countries have a constitution including, Australia, US, Germany, just to name a few. But England does not, England instead has a series of laws, both common and case law that set the rules and guidelines that the English people are to live by. This subject will look at why England does not have a Constitution, what it has instead, and just how important those laws are to England.

Administrative law has to do with the rights of a person to take action against the state for the wrongdoings of the state. This looks at the power of the courts to rectify these issues, and the importance of judicial power.
Human Rights law examines what classifies as human rights, and what the governments and judiciaries responsibility is to enforce those particular rights. You will consider the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and discover the areas of English law that have been influenced over time through the changing views on human rights.

Contract Law

A contract is an agreement made between two or more parties that is intended to be legally binding. You will have already made numerous contracts throughout your life, even if you haven’t realised it. The contracts in your future including mortgages, employment contracts, confidentiality contracts, etc. will be extremely important.

In this subject you will learn about the types of contracts, their enforceability under the law, their importance, and what role you will play as a lawyer in ensuring that your clients have their rights protected. You will also learn what is involved in writing a contract, and how to deal with a contract law issue before the courts.

Contract law will be applicable to almost any area of law you enter into, as it is strongly integrated in many areas, particularly family law, corporate law, and land law.

Criminal Law

Criminal disputes are the ones that most often grace our TV screens, be in through the news or through movies and TV drama.

Criminal Law covers a broad range of criminal offences, the way these offences are dealt with in court, and how the criminals are punished. You’ll learn it’s not quite as dramatic as it seems in the movies, but there are still many interesting stories. Hopefully this course will have you deliberating about whether the law was correct, whether the person was innocent or guilty, and whether they deserved the punishment.

If you enjoy Criminal law your career path can go two ways – into private practice, or into working for the Crown Prosecution Service or Public Defender Service.

Equity and Trusts

Equity deals with what is fair, and this is not necessarily what is set in stone in a contract. Therefore, case law is often used to decide what is actually fair, and it means that there can be different decisions for different situations varying on the precedent and even capable of setting it’s own precedent.

This subject deals with of property ownership, on behalf of a person who has trusted you to deal with their property or money in a certain way. It is often dealing with a party that no longer has the capacity to deal with their property or finances in a certain way, or has deceased and has left these trusts to another person.

Trusts are grouped with equity because trusts are often not necessarily just what is written down, but about the person’s intention, their emotions, their physical and mental state. Therefore, when finding out how to deal with trusts it is not equitable to just look at common law, but instead necessary to look at case law and decide the equitable decision for each individual case.

Law of the European Union

Trade with the EU is very important for the UK economy, importing nearly £20 billion per month and exporting around £13 billion (UK Trade Info, Sept-Nov ’13). Not only are they an important trade partner, our political policies are strongly influenced our EU membership and our laws become increasingly tied with the rest of the EU.

This subject teaches the story of the UK and the EU, and the way the EU law influences on England and its other 27 other member states. It will open your mind to the future of the EU, the future of England, and the integral part the law plays in creating and enhancing the largest economy in the world.

Land Law

Land Law is the study of ownership, rights to land, and how land is used. It also deals with anything permanently in, on or even above the land.

You will consider a variety of legal land issues, from neighbourhood disputes over trees, to environmental disputes with mining companies. Examining the best way to deal with your clients and each case, and how such cases are resolved. This subject will give you a good understanding of types of land issues, and gives you a way of approaching them which could be very relevant in any future career, government policy, or future legal cases.

Tort Law

A tort is when one party partakes in a wrongful act or infringement that harms another party. Under tort law the party that has been wronged can seek compensation in the form of damages, changes to the law, and other ways. The definition of a wrongful act or infringement can be the most controversial part of this topic, when does one party lose liability and another gain it? You may be discussing who is responsible, for example for environmental waste, how do you decide, and more importantly the subject will be looking at how the courts decide the punishment or damages.

One contentious case in the past has been the ‘Hot Coffee’ case from the US, where a lady spilt McDonalds Coffee on her lap, whose fault was it really, and how is the court to decide and split liability?

Typical Electives:

  • Alternative Dispute Resolution
  • Banking & Finance Law
  • Commercial Law
  • Construction Law
  • Corporate Law
  • Employment Law
  • Environmental Law
  • Family Law
  • Human Rights Law
  • Intellectual Property Law
  • Litigation
  • Personal Injury Law
  • Private Client Law
  • Property Law
  • Shipping Law
  • Sports & Media Law
  • Tax Law
  • TMT Law
  • Travel Law
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