LAWS6227 - Consumer Contracts and Product Defects


  • Examine recent developments granting special legal protection to consumers, from historical, comparative, policy and practical perspectives.
  • Focus on aspects of the liability of suppliers of goods and services to consumers, sometimes called 'post-sale' consumer protection.
  • Assess the effectiveness of recent legislation in this field, comparing relevant European Community directives and related developments in the Asia-Pacific (eg Japan, New Zealand and the US).


Introduction (the 'consumer' concept and some policy factors leading to consumer protection developments); Outline of terms implied in contracts for the supply of goods and services to consumers; Judicial and legislative control of exclusion clauses; Unconscionable and unfair contracts (control under the general law and by statute); The liability of manufacturers for defective products under: the general law; statutory liability of manufacturers to consumers (particularly under Trade Practices Act 1974 (Cth), Part V Division 2A); strict products liability (Trade Practices Act Part VA, with special reference to the similar EC directives on products liability); Product safety regulation (especially Trade Practices Act, Part V Division 1A and recent reform debates, with reference to the EC directives on general product safety); Consumer access to redress, especially class actions.


Semester 1 Intensive
2, 3 & 10, 12 May 2014

The timetable is subject to frequent changes. Please refer to the latest version of the Postgraduate Timetable.


  • 3,500 Word Essay (40%)
  • 4,500 Word Take-Home Exam (60%)


LAWS6024 - Consumer Protection Law - Liability of Suppliers to Consumers or LAWS6025- Consumer Protection Law – Regulation of Unfair Marketing Practices.


  • Justin Malbon and Luke Nottage (eds) Consumer Law and Policy in Australia and New Zealand (Sydney, Federation Press, 2013)

Cases and materials will be issued.

Please note: This unit replaced LAWS 6227 - Consumer Protection Law: Liability of Suppliers to Consumers.

Continuing Professional Development (CPD)

You can credit this unit towards Continuing Professional Development (CPD). Units of study that are part of Sydney Law School’s Postgraduate Program meet the necessary Mandatory Continuing Legal Education (MCLE) of the Law Society of New South Wales and the Continuing Professional Development (CPD) requirements of the New South Wales Bar Association. You may complete this unit of study by enrolling on a non-degree basis or on an audit basis only with no assessment via Single Unit Study.

Courses this unit is available in

Master of Laws | Graduate Diploma in Law | Master of Global Law | Master of Business Law | Graduate Diploma in Commercial Law | Master of International Law | Graduate Diploma in International Law | Graduate Diploma in International Business Law | Master of International Business and Law