This course is a compulsory course required for admission to legal practice. Understanding the law of property is essential for any practising lawyer. The course builds heavily on the law of contract (which you have already completed) and will lead on to other compulsory and elective courses. It is closely related to Equity and Trusts (a further compulsory course) which you will study after Property. In terms of elective courses, understanding the basic law of property is essential before you go on to study courses such as intellectual property, commercial law, succession law and Indigenous Australians and the Law.
The course provides an overview of the law governing personal and real property, emphasising the concepts of possession and title, the fragmentation of proprietary interests, and the various ways in which common law and legislation resolve disputes between competing interests. The greater part of the course is devoted to the nature, creation, acquisition, exercise, and remedies for the protection, of interests in real property (land). The course covers legal and equitable interests in land, the acquisition and transfer of such interests by purchase, gift and adverse possession, priority rules, leases, mortgages, easements, and concurrent ownership. Particular attention is paid to the Torrens system of title by registration. (Property is not a course in conveyancing, which is covered in Practical Legal Training programs such as the Graduate Diploma of Legal Practice in the Legal Workshop)
Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:
- Define, explain, distinguish and apply the basic concepts and terminology of property law;
- Critically analyse the values and policy considerations involved in the legal regulation of property transactions;
- Recognise, define and appraise the role of property law in providing tools for the myriad of property dealings for commercial and private purposes, including transfers, securing of loans, leasing land, sharing of ownership, and regulating land use;
- Explain and demonstrate how the doctrines of property law apply to a factual problem, in writing and orally, and recognise any unresolved or ambiguous questions of law;
- Engage in legal research to formulate persuasive written arguments reflecting critically on the fundamental themes underlying and connecting policy and doctrines covered in the course, and how property has been, and can be, used as a vehicle for social change.
- The proposed means of assessment for this course will provide students with the option of undertaking at least two pieces of assessment, including one piece during the semester. More information about the means of assessment, including the relationship between the assessment and the learning outcomes of the course, will be available in the Class Summary before the first week of semester. (null) [LO null]
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Classes offered during semester periods are expected to have 3 contact hours per week (a minimum of 36 hours). Students are generally expected to devote at least 10 hours overall per week to this course.
Requisite and Incompatibility
Edgeworth et al, Sackville and Neave Australian Property Law (11th edition, LexisNexis Butterworths 2020).
(Students may also use the 10th edition although some cases will be missing).
Conveyancing Act 1919 (NSW), Real Property Act 1900 (NSW).
Gray et al, Property Law in New South Wales (4th edition, LexisNexis Butterworths 2018).
(Students are not expected to buy this text but may find it useful. The library has copies).
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.
Offerings, Dates and Class Summary Links
Class summaries, if available, can be accessed by clicking on the View link for the relevant class number.