ATMC BUS203 BUSINESS LAW AND ETHICS
ASSESSMENT TASK 2
WORD LIMIT: 2000 words
Your work will be assessed against the following criteria:
- Demonstration of knowledge of relevant business law principles and their sources.
- Demonstration of understanding by analysis and reasoning in applying relevant principles to a given fact scenario in order to generate conclusions.
- Demonstration of communication skills through written expression and presentation.
The following guidelines are based on a review of common errors made in Business Law and Ethics assignments. Students are asked to read these guidelines carefully as they will be taken into account in marking your papers. Students are also referred to guides to Harvard style referencing available in the library and from Student Services.
The information to follow is presented under the headings of:
- Content and analysis
- Structure and style.
CONTENT AND ANALYSIS
The following guidelines stem from the assessment criteria stated above:
- It is not enough to discuss the facts in a general way without reference to legal principle/s.
- It is not enough to state relevant legal principles without explicitly applying those principles to the facts.
- Statements of legal requirements/ principles must be accurate. Use of your own words is encouraged but must convey the substance (meaning of) the legal principle/s.
- Merely reproducing the facts given in the problem will not attract marks. You must refer to the facts only when applying the law to them.
- Accurate and full reference to cases and legislation must be used (see further below).
- Do not copy and paste from the internet/ It is often inaccurate. Please use your weeks 4, 5 and 6 learning materials on Blackboard (including the negligence flowchart).
STRUCTURE AND STYLE
The following guidelines reflect the requirements of formal academic writing generally, which is an essential skill for Business Law students.
- Executive summaries should NOT be included.
- Avoid abbreviations- eg. use ‘has not’ instead of ‘hasn’t’.
- Avoid informal language- eg. use ‘Therefore,’ instead of ‘So,’ or ‘Well’.
- Avoid use of emotive language- eg. use ‘I argue…, ‘I would argue…’, ‘I assert…, or ‘I contend…’ instead of ‘I believe...’, ‘I feel...’ or even ‘I think...’.
- Be mindful that legal analysis is about logical argument based on principles as applied to the facts and not about personal responses- emotional or value-laden.
- Avoid use of ‘slang’ (or poor grammar generally)- eg use ‘should have’ instead of ‘should of’.
- An opinion may be stated but must be based upon an application of legal principle to the facts.
- Check spelling and grammar; use the spell and grammar checks available on computer.
- Full sentences, containing a subject, verb and object must be used.
- When beginning a sentence with a reference to a section of legislation use ‘Section..”
- When referring to a section of legislation mid-sentence use ‘s.…’.
- When referring to a court’s finding or judgement use, for example, ‘It was held in that case that…’ or ‘The court held that…’(Note third person and past tense used).
- When first referred to in a sentence cite legislation in full, and the full name of cases plus the year of reporting. For example;
- It was found in Smith v Jones (1986) that…
- Section 67 of the Town Planning Act 1987 (Cth) requires that…
- Subsequent references may be summarised or truncated to, for example;
- In Smith’s Case…
- The Town Planning Act…; or
- The Act…
- Care should be taken with the use of quotations and reproduction of sections of legislation.
- Generally, a quotation should only be used when the author conveys her own very specific idea that you are referencing, or when the author conveys an idea in a manner that is convincing and that you can not adequately paraphrase.
- Reproduction of provisions of legislation should be limited to very brief sections or parts of sections.
- Case citations (references) should include the name of the case and the year it is reported in brackets in the body of the text (consistent with Harvard referencing style). Full citations with the name of the case, year reported and law report series (with volume and page number) should be listed at the end of your work in a list of references.
- References to legislation must be fully given in the text (for the first time used in the body of your work) and repeated in full in the list of references at the end. Note above that once you have provided a full reference to legislation in the text, you can then abbreviate it.
- To reiterate, accurate, complete references to cases and legislation must be given as stated above (and may be found in your text).
- References to either legislation or cases must NOT contain spelling errors.
- Case names and legislation should be presented in italics.
- Appropriate margins should be provided on each page.
- An assignment cover page should be attached to your work.
- The name of your tutor and the day and time of your tutorial MUST appear on the assignment cover page.
- A copy of your paper should be retained for your reference.
Please use Times New Roman 12 font.
Shiraz Cabernet was a guest of a winery club event held at The Mooloolaba Blast last February. As she was leaving the venue to return home she lost her footing and fell, causing severe injury to her knee.
The Mooloolaba Blast is a business operated by Mooloolaba Conventions Pty Ltd. The venue is an old boathouse dating back to 1960. It is a one level building with a wide verandah across the front. To modernise the boathouse a set of reconstructed concrete stairs was built six years ago which leads to the entrance. The original brown and orange retro tiles still remain, lining the entire verandah surface.
The accident occurred on 27 February 2021. The day was drizzly, and Shiraz tells you that the rain became heavier as the day progressed. The event commenced at 6pm. Shiraz noticed on arrival that the tiles on the verandah were wet. She remembered she was wearing comfortable, medium-heeled shoes, which had rubber soles.
An hour after arriving, Shiraz went outside for some fresh air and slipped slightly on the wet tiles at the entrance but did not fall. The event finished at midnight. The guests went to the foyer to leave the venue. Shiraz had by then consumed ‘at least’ three glasses of wine over six hours. As she went out onto the tiles on the verandah, she slipped and fell on her knee. Shiraz states that on falling she felt instant pain and throbbing in her knee and could only stand up with the aid of several guests.
Shiraz tells you that she knew that the tiles were 'wet and greasy'. She agrees that tiles are normally more slippery when wet, and that she was possibly a little unbalanced because of the wine she had drunk. She tells you that there did not appear to be any foreign substances on the tiles.
You have obtained evidence regarding the general appearance and standard of cleanliness of the tiled verandah, as well as its slip resistance. Other guests report that the verandah appeared to be clean and that no one else fell on the tiles.
Staff employed at the boathouse have reported that the tiles are very slippery when wet because they are old and worn, and that care needs to be taken when walking on them.
Shiraz has received a letter from Mooloolaba Conventions Pty Ltd stating that in their opinion the tiles present only a marginal slip hazard but not a hazard to pedestrians taking reasonable care. The letter also states that during the six years that the business has been operating there has been no other falls on the tiles reported.
The Uber driver who dropped Shiraz at the venue, tells you that he remembered water dripping from the roof of the verandah as looked up at the venue at about 6pm. One of the guests, Chardonnay, remembers that there was a pool of water near the entrance and under the boathouse verandah roof, which she had to avoid when leaving at midnight.
You have been told by a staff member from the boathouse that a hole in the verandah roof was reported to the owners in January after heavy rains and that the problem has not been addressed. Staff have also told you that no maintenance has been done on the building for years (except for the reconstructed concrete stairs) because the owners are ‘tight with their money’.
You have no meteorological evidence at hand, but other guests remember light rain early and a very heavy rain beating on the roof later in the night.
The medical report from Shiraz’s psychologist is that Shiraz is suffering from chronic pain syndrome with major depression, caused by her fall. Her medical consultant agrees that her pain is genuine, and that she has limited knee movement, but could improve with further treatment.
Shiraz wants to sue Mooloolaba Conventions Pty Ltd in Negligence. She comes to you for advice. Advise her as to the likely success of her claim.
Answer the following questions:
- Did Mooloolaba Conventions Pty Ltd owe Shiraz a legally recognisable duty of care at the time of the incident? (15 marks)
- If Mooloolaba Conventions Pty Ltd owed Shiraz a duty of care, did they breach that duty of care? (20 marks)
- Could Shiraz prove the element of damage in an action in negligence against Mooloolaba Conventions Pty Ltd? (15 marks)
- What defence, if any, could Mooloolaba Conventions Pty Ltd raise against Shiraz? How would proof of a defence affect Shiraz’s claim? (15 marks)
- What remedy could Shiraz claim against Mooloolaba Conventions Pty Ltd? (5 Marks)