With our ageing population succession law is a growing area of practice for legal practitioners. The course examines the law governing succession to property after the death of the owner. Succession law touches every family, and, eventually, all of us.
Major topics include:
the nature of wills and their relationship to contracts;
capacity to make a will, fraud on the testator, undue influence, formalities for making a will and how a will is revoked;
what wills mean and how they are applied;
the principles and practice of drafting wills;
loss of capacity to benefit under a will; for instance, for killing the testator;
how an estate is divided when there is no will; and
how the law protects family members against being disinherited by will.
The law on the various topics is considered in a social and political context, and the principles and rules are related to theory and to practice. While the course concentrates on the law of the ACT, students will also frequently make comparisons and consider the law in other jurisdictions. It follows that considerable attention is given to pressures and directions for reform.
Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:
- Examine, assess and apply the basic principles of the Law of Succession;
- Synthesise, evaluate and apply the detailed ruled of Succession law in relation to relevant legal principles in selected areas;
- Investigate and critically evaluate the socio-political imperatives that drive the development of the Law of Succession;
- Explore and compare the relationship and interaction between the Law of Succession and other areas of law, such as Taxation, Estate Planning, Contract Law, Family Law, Property Law, and the Law of Trusts;
- Synthesise and critically analyse the practice of the Law of Succession in selected areas, including the relationship between law and practice and the principles of Will Drafting; and
- Critically examine and apply principles of ethical practice and professional responsibility in the practice of Succession Law.
- Research Paper (50) [LO 1,2,3,4,5,6]
- Take-home exam (50) [LO 1,2,3,4,5,6]
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- Classes offered in non-standard sessions will be taught on an intensive base with compulsory contact hours (approximately 26 hours of face to face teaching). The course will also require advanced preparation through assigned readings. In total, it is anticipated that the hours required for completion of this course (class preparation, teaching and completion of assessment) will not exceed 120 hours.
- Classes offered during semester periods are expected to have three contact hours per week.
Click here for the LLM Masters Program course list
Requisite and Incompatibility
Students must rely on the approved Class Summary which will be posted to the Programs and Courses site approximately two weeks prior to the commencement of the course. Alternatively, this information will be published in the Program course list when known.
A general knowledge of the law of contract, property and trusts will be assumed.
Tuition fees are for the academic year indicated at the top of the page.
Commonwealth Support (CSP) Students
If you 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). More information about your student contribution amount for each course at Fees.
- Student Contribution Band:
- Unit value:
- 6 units
If you are a domestic graduate coursework student with a Domestic Tuition Fee (DTF) place or international student you will be required to pay course tuition fees (see below). Course tuition fees are indexed annually. Further information for domestic and international students about tuition and other fees can be found at Fees.
Where there is a unit range displayed for this course, not all unit options below may be available.