Faculty of Law

Monash University

Postgraduate - Unit

This unit entry is for students who completed this unit in 2013 only. For students planning to study the unit, please refer to the unit indexes in the the current edition of the Handbook. If you have any queries contact the managing faculty for your course or area of study.

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6 points, SCA Band 3, 0.125 EFTSL

To find units available for enrolment in the current year, you must make sure you use the indexes and browse unit tool in the current edition of the Handbook.

FacultyFaculty of Law
OfferedNot offered in 2013



This unit looks at the body of law that Australian courts apply to commercial disputes in which not all facts are linked to a single jurisdiction. There may be links to foreign countries or to more than one Australian jurisdiction. The main questions considered in this unit are:

  • when do the Australian courts assume jurisdiction in cross-border commercial disputes?
  • when can foreign judgments in commercial disputes be recognised and enforced in Australia?
  • what are the general principles of choosing the applicable law in cross-border commercial disputes?
  • what are the specific rules of choosing the applicable law for obligations and property?
  • what are the theories underlying the rules on choice of law?

This unit may be of particular interest to students who are working, or intend to work, in commercial practice.


Students who successfully complete this unit should

  1. be in a position to identify when a particular commercial dispute involving a foreign element raises conflictual issues, and what those issues are;
  2. have an appreciation of the rules that govern the jurisdiction of Australian courts in cross-border commercial disputes;
  3. have an appreciation of the rules that govern the recognition and enforcement in Australia of foreign judgments in commercial disputes;
  4. have an appreciation of the choice-of-law process in general and the particular choice-of-law rules for issues relating to obligations and property;
  5. be aware of the theoretical and policy justifications for the conflictual rules mentioned;
  6. have some awareness of how conflictual issues in commercial disputes are resolved in other jurisdictions, both under the common law and under civil law.


One research assignment (3,750 words): 50%
One take-home examination (3,750 words): 50%

Contact hours

Students enrolled in this unit will be provided with 24 contact hours of seminars per semester whether intensive, semi-intensive, or semester-long offering.


Either LLB or LAW7429, LAW7266, LAW7267 and LAW7269.