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Handbooks Courses Units

LAW5125 - Lawyers ethics and society 506

6 points, SCA Band 3, 0.125 EFTSL

Undergraduate Faculty of Law

Leader: Semester One and Two: Adrian Evans


Clayton First semester 2008 (Day)
Clayton Second semester 2008 (Day)
Clayton Summer semester A 2008 (Day)
Clayton Summer semester B 2008 (Day)


Topics include: history, organisation, education, functions and regulation of lawyers in Victoria and elsewhere; reform issues; nature and significance of a profession; independence of courts and lawyers; changing face of dispute resolution; the cost of justice and different modes of legal service delivery; standards of professional conduct including basic trust accounting, complaints and disciplinary procedures; ethical rules and moral values, with a particular emphasis on identifying and resolving ethical issues. The unit meets the requirements of the Council of Legal Education for admission to practice in Victoria in the area of 'professional conduct' (including basic trust accounting).


Students successfully completing this unit should

  1. have an understanding of the legal profession in its historical and societal contexts and issues surrounding the regulation of the profession;
  2. be able to analyse critically the role of the lawyer in the Australian legal system with reference to questions such as the independence of courts and lawyers, the adversarial nature of the system, dispute resolution, the cost of justice and different modes of legal service delivery;
  3. have examined and understood the concept of trust in the lawyer-client relationship;
  4. have developed skills in recognising and distinguishing types of professional and personal conduct and questions of moral, ethical and legal obligation;
  5. have developed skills in applying the law of contract and torts in relation to lawyer-client duties, breaches and remedies; and
  6. have enhanced skills in critical analysis and presentation of argument.


Semesters 1 and 2:
Two ten-minute roleplays on ethics and client communication: 10%
Research assignment (compulsory)(2400 words): 30%
Take home Examination (2,000 word): 60%
Summer Semester:
Research assignment (compulsory)(2400 words): 30%
Take home examination (2,000 words): 70%

Contact hours

Three hours of lectures per week and one hour tutorial every four weeks


LAW1100 or LAW1101 and LAW1102; LAW2100 or LAW2101 and LAW2102; LAW2200 or LAW2201 and LAW2202

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