• Offered by Law School
  • ANU College ANU College of Law
  • Course subject Laws
  • Areas of interest Law
  • Academic career UGRD
  • Mode of delivery In Person

This course examines the liability in tort of government and public authorities, focusing on the torts of negligence, misfeasance in public authority, malicious prosecution, breach of statutory duty and vicarious liability for intentional torts. In addition to looking at general principles of liability, it will examine specific instances of liability involving police, schools, child welfare and protection agencies, and immigration officials. It examines the tension between the protection of individual rights and deference to the constitutional separation of powers.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

Course Objectives and Expected Learning Outcomes

A participant who has successfully completed this course should be able to:
(1) Explain and critique the shape of, and trends in, modern tort law as it relates to public authorities;
(2) Outline the principles of negligence, and some of the specific ways they apply to governments and public authorities;
(3) Explain and critique the operation of the separate torts of malicious prosecution, breach of statutory duty, vicarious liability for intentional torts, and misfeasance in public office, in the context of the liability of public authorities;  
(4) Design, plan and execute a substantial piece of written scholarship, with some independence; and
(5) Engage with peers and staff to describe, analyse and debate the tort liability of government and public authorities.

Indicative Assessment

5000 research paper, class participation

The ANU uses Turnitin to enhance student citation and referencing techniques, and to assess assignment submissions as a component of the University's approach to managing Academic Integrity. While the use of Turnitin is not mandatory, the ANU highly recommends Turnitin is used by both teaching staff and students. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the ANU Online website.


Three contact hours per week. Students are generally expected to devote at least 10 hours overall per week to this course.

Requisite and Incompatibility

To enrol in this course you must be studying a program which includes the Bachelor of Laws or Juris Doctor, completed or be completing five LAWS courses at 1000 or 6100 level and have completed LAWS1203/LAWS6103 Torts.


Tuition fees are for the academic year indicated at the top of the page.  

If you are a domestic graduate coursework or international student you will be required to pay tuition fees. Tuition fees are indexed annually. Further information for domestic and international students about tuition and other fees can be found at Fees.

Student Contribution Band:
Unit value:
6 units

If you are an undergraduate student and have been offered a Commonwealth supported place, your fees are set by the Australian Government for each course. At ANU 1 EFTSL is 48 units (normally 8 x 6-unit courses). You can find your student contribution amount for each course at Fees.  Where there is a unit range displayed for this course, not all unit options below may be available.

6.00 0.12500
Domestic fee paying students
Year Fee
2017 $3216
International fee paying students
Year Fee
2017 $4590
Note: Please note that fee information is for current year only.

Offerings, Dates and Class Summary Links

ANU utilises MyTimetable to enable students to view the timetable for their enrolled courses, browse, then self-allocate to small teaching activities / tutorials so they can better plan their time. Find out more on the Timetable webpage.

There are no current offerings for this course.

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