LAW5423 - Private international law in commercial disputes - 2017

6 points, SCA Band 3, 0.125 EFTSL

Postgraduate - Unit

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered.



Quota applies

Postgraduate programs are based on a model of small group teaching and therefore class sizes need to be restricted.

Not offered in 2017


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.


On completion of this unit, students will be able to:

  • Apply knowledge of, and understanding of recent developments in, private international law in commercial disputes with creativity and initiative to new situations in professional practice and/or for further learning;
  • Investigate, analyse and synthesise complex information, problems, concepts and theories in relation to private international law in commercial disputes;
  • Conduct research in private international law in commercial disputes, based on knowledge of appropriate research principles and methods;
  • Use cognitive, technical and creative skills to generate and evaluate at an abstract level complex ideas and concepts relevant to private international law in commercial disputes.


One research assignment (3,750 words): 50%

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

Workload requirements

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