Legal Issues and Relevant Law Questions – Law Assignment Help


Legal Issues

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  • As you go through these, ensure you are able to identify the legal issues
  • You will have three minutes per mark to answer in an exam, so you need to write the essence of the answer. You will not have time to write a lengthy expansive answer
  • You must show the grader in an exam that you understand the legal issues that the questions raises and are able to apply the relevant law
  • We will not be providing sample solutions or grading answers, as you have already been given extensive problem solving practice in tutorials

Practice Exam Questions

1. Rat makes a loan to Toad of $1000. The loan was to be repaid on 1 December. However, on 1 December, Toad was only able to pay $900, so Rat told Toad ‘never mind, I can see you are struggling, if you give me $900 I will consider the debt paid’.  A week later, Rat sees Toad spending money at the pub and changes his mind about the remainder of the debt. 

Referring to the relevant principles of contract law, explain whether Toad is bound to repay Rat the $100.

2. Vole negotiates with Weasel for the sale of her house.  They agree on the price of $150 000. Just before Vole signed the contract, Weasel noticed that his secretary had typed the purchase price as being just $15 000. However, he said nothing and the sale was settled with him paying $15 000 into Vole’s bank account.

Referring to the relevant principles of contract law, discuss whether Vole can escape the contract.             

3. Emma’s father, Tom, promises Emma that if she studies hard and obtains a high distinction for her Business Law course at BIB, he will give her $1,000. Emma and Tom sign a written agreement to this effect. Emma spends all her free time studying Business Law and receives a high distinction. Emma asks her father for the money he promised but he refuses saying “you haven’t done anything that you’re not already required to do. Your high marks should be enough reward”. 

Referring to the relevant principles of contract law, explain whether Tom is obliged to give Emma $1000.                                    

4. Harry, a 15- year- old, bought a new mobile phone from Kim for $900. When Kim sent Harry an account for the phone Harry refused to pay.

Referring to the relevant principles of contract law, advise Kim whether she can enforce the contract.

5. At an auction for sale of particular farm property of 1,000 acres, the auctioneer claimed that 700 acres were cleared and ready for agricultural use. Hank bought the property and signed a contract of sale, but later found that only 300 acres were cleared. No mention of any clearing of the land was made in the contract. 

Advise Hank by referring to principles of contract law.

6. Manuel agreed to transport a shipment of fruit for Basil. When carrying the fruit, Manuel overloaded the truck in contravention of the Road Transport Act 1958 (Vic). He was fined by the Fruit Squad of Victoria Police after being stopped on the highway. When Basil heard about the incident he refused to pay Manuel for the fruit delivery. 

Advise Manuel of his contractual rights.                                                                        

7. Glug Ltd (‘Glug’) is a medium sized ASX listed company which sells fine wines in a chain of stores. The Managing Director, Basil knows very little about wine and usually leaves buying decisions to the Marketing Director, Sybil.  While Sybil was away on her holidays, Basil decided to take advantage of her absence and order 500 cases of sweet Spanish wine to his (Basil’s) taste.  Unfortunately, this proves to be a costly disaster for Glug, as its discerning customers have been driven away by this cheap and nasty wine.  

Discuss whether Basil has breached any of his duties as director, and what if any, defences he may have.  Refer to relevant legislation and case law in your answer.                            

8. Mike lost an expensive watch and put an advertisement in the newspaper offering a reward. Jane found the watch and from the engraving on the back was able to return it to Mike. The following day Jane saw the advertisement in the newspaper and claimed the reward from Mike. Mike refused to pay. Jane approaches you and wishes to know whether a contract exists between herself and Mike.                                                 

9. Salty Constructions Pty Ltd entered into a fixed price contract of $500 000 with Al for the construction of 12 beach huts. After the huts have been built, Al refuses to pay Salty because the doors did not properly close. 

10. Can Salty succeed in claiming the entire contract price from Al?  Would the situation be any different if the huts were destroyed by a tsunami?  Refer only to principles of contract law.

11. Ingrid, a property developer, telephoned Billabong City Council (‘BCC’) as she was interested in buying some commercial property on the outskirts of Billabong City. Ingrid had heard rumours that the city was planning to build a new ring road near the site and was worried access to the site might be blocked.  The clerk at BCC checked the ring road plans and assured Ingrid that any new roads would not affect the site in question.  On the basis of this information, Ingrid bought the property.  However, the clerk at BCC had unfortunately misread the plans and the following year Ingrid found out that the property in question would indeed be blocked by the ring road.  The site is now valued at less than half of what Ingrid paid for it.

Advise Ingrid by referring to relevant case law.                                                                                                                

12. Jack emailed Mario’s Café asking for a free meal in exchange for positive coverage on his Instagram account. Mario declined this offer. Although Jack had never been to Mario’s Cafe, Jack was annoyed and posted the following review online:
‘Eating at Mario’s Café was a dismal experience. The steak was burned to a crisp and the waiter wore a filthy apron. Avoid this dump.’

Advise Mario by referring to relevant case law.                                                                                                            

13. Does the rider of a jet ski being operated near the shore owe a duty of care to nearby swimmers?

Refer to relevant case law in your answer.                                                                                                                    

14. Luke purchases a bicycle from the Amazing Cycle Company, (the ‘ACC’) in Melbourne.  The bike is advertised for sale as having ‘cutting edge safety features.’ Luke explains to the salesperson that he has poor balance as a result of a hereditary condition.  In response, the salesperson assures Luke the bicycle is very stable.  The bicycle had not been assembled correctly and wobbled badly when Luke was riding it, throwing Luke into the path of a passing car. Unfortunately, Luke is severely injured and is unable to return to work.

a) Can Luke recover his medical costs and economic losses in the tort of negligence? Use relevant case law to support your answer.            
b) Explain which, if any, provisions of the Australian Consumer Law have been breached.                                  

15. Harry owns and manages the Laser Light Cosmetic Club (‘LLCC’).  He purchases a new laser machine that minimizes the appearance of wrinkles.
When the new machine is installed, Harry employs Dan to go round the neighbourhood, knock on doors, and offer a free trial to anyone who is interested in purchasing a course of laser treatments.  Dan goes door-knocking in the late evenings when people are home from work.
One of the persons he calls on is Shirley, a frail, partly deaf pensioner aged 88.  When she answers the door, Dan says: “Hi!  I’m Dan.  I’ve come to offer you a free trial of our new laser machine.  Shirley says:  “Not now.  I’m going to bed.”  Dan says:  “It’s now or never, and you would be mad to miss an opportunity like this.  Let me in – it’ll only take a moment.” Shirley lets him in.  Dan tells Shirley all her wrinkles will be erased and it won’t cost her a cent. Dan gets Shirley to fill in her personal details on a form, and asks her to sign it.  She does not read it and he does not explain what it says.  

The document signed by Shirley is in fact a contract for a year’s membership of LLCC, at a cost of $200.00 per month.  The contract states that, if membership is terminated for any reason before it expires, the remainder of the year’s fees become immediately payable.  
The contract says that neither LLCC nor Harry is liable for any adverse consequences of using LLCC’s machine.  The sensors on the new machine prove to be faulty and several customers receive excessive doses of laser beams, causing severe sunburn and scarring.  

Despite the problems, LLCC continues to advertise its machine as ‘automated and completely safe’. Discuss these events in the light of the provisions of the Australian Consumer Law as well as any relevant principles of contract law.

16. Jim owns a restaurant business and has decided to add a new range of seafood salads to his menu. He puts up a large sign in the window that with the words “the best seafood salad in Melbourne, made with fresh seafood!”.  Amy, who owns Annabel’s, the seafood restaurant across the road is annoyed and accuses Jim of misleading customers, because she knows that Jim uses frozen prawns in the seafood salads.  Jim responds that the prawns are “freshly frozen”.  Amy has threatened legal action under s 18 of the Australian Consumer Law.

a) Is Amy entitled to bring such an action?
b) If so, is such an action likely to succeed?

17. Billabong City Council (‘BCC’) entered into the following agreements:
i. for the Billabong Tennis Club (‘BTC’) to use the council’s courts in exchange for the BTC maintaining the courts and surrounding areas
ii. for the Billabong Swimming Club (‘BSC’) to conduct a swimming carnival at the council pools in exchange for having taught local children to swim in the past
iii. for the Billabong Social Club (‘BSC’) to attend a free lunch, in exchange for the members agreeing not to swear, drink alcohol or smoke.
iv. For the BSC to use one of the council’s meeting rooms, in exchange for the members agreeing not to take illegal drugs

REQUIRED: Referring to the relevant principles of contract law, advise BCC whether it is under any contractual liability to the clubs on account of these agreements.

18. Alpha Airlines (‘AA’) publishes a sale on its website in which business class air fares are mistakenly priced at $700 each instead of $7000. This is due to an error made by a junior employee.  Mr and Mrs Cheapskate insist that AA sell them two fares at $700 each. 

Referring to the relevant principles of contract law, explain whether AA is obliged to sell them the fares for $700.                            

19. Polly makes a written offer to Suki to sell her diamond necklace for $8000. In her offer, Polly states that ‘the offer will remain open for five days only’. Two days later she tells Suki that she has changed her mind. Suki, who has been trying to arrange finance to buy the necklace is very upset about Polly changing her mind. She is threatening to sue her.

Referring to the relevant principles of contract law, discuss whether Suki can still accept the offer and hold Polly to the sale.                    

20. Wayne is a 17 year old tennis star. Wayne has a two year contract with his coach, Shane.  After Wayne lost several tennis tournaments in a row, he blamed Shane. In a rage Wayne told Shane he was hopeless as a coach and that Shane was to pack his bags and leave. Shane had 12 months left on his contract at the time. 

Referring to the relevant principles of contract law, advise Shane of his rights.                                                 

21. Zilla signs a contract with Werribee Weddings Pty Ltd (‘WW’) to hold her wedding at WW’s venue, a classic Victorian mansion.  Zilla pays WW $85k to provide catering, decorations and the venue. WW’s mansion has wild African animals roaming in the parklands and Zilla has planned her wedding around a safari theme. All the guests have been instructed to wear safari outfits and Zilla plans to use the wedding footage to promote safari travel on her Instagram account.  Zilla has a million followers and estimates the promotion will earn her $300k.  Zilla did not inform WW of her social media plans.  Unfortunately, WW has double booked two events and cancel Zilla’s event one week before the wedding. At this late stage, the only replacement venue that Zilla can find is a decrepit motel with a concrete carpark, at a cost of $15k.  Zilla feels furious and humiliated.

Referring to the relevant principles of contract law, advise Zilla of her rights and what compensation if any, she is likely to receive from WW.    

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