Recent Question

Wally has been wanting to buy his mother a special present for when she turns 40 this year and had been looking for something special all last year.

Unfortunately he didn't have much money except for about $500 which he has saved by doing odd jobs on weekends and after school.

He decides that if he is to get something special he will need to borrow some money off his Uncle Alan. Wally catches up with Uncle Alan at a family gathering at Christmas. Uncle Alan is happy to help out and so lends Adam $2000 on the understanding that Wally can start paying him back when he starts his apprenticeship this year.

Wally is still undecided about what to buy but sees an advertisement in the Herald Sun where Cougar Bikes, in order to boost sales, is offering to pay $5,000 to the first person in the upcoming year to ride a new brand Cougar lightweight bicycle from Melbourne to Port Fairy and back to Melbourne.

Wally decides that if he could get $5000 he could buy his mother a great gift and also throw a big birthday party for his mother and pay off his Uncle Alan, so he buys the new Cougar lightweight bicycle for $500 and starts riding to Port Fairy straight away on 1 January, 2014.

When he gets to Port Fairy on 4 January 2014, he sees a great Baby Grand Piano in the lounge of the Budget Bed and Breakfast in which he is staying overnight before returning to Melbourne. His mother used to love playing the piano and he asks about the piano with the owner Ethel.

Ethel has arthritis and can't play anymore and offers to sell the piano to Wally for $5000. Wally thinks about it and figures out that he has $2000 and if he wins the $5000 from Cougar bikes he would still have enough to pay off the piano and throw a party so he says to Ethel. -It's a great piano and I'd like to buy it. I can afford it if I can pay for it in two instalments.- Ethel smiles. Nothing further is said.

Two days later, while on his way back from Port Fairy, Wally stops briefly at the Geelong RSL club for a meal, a drink and a rest. While at the club, he reads that day’s issue of the Herald Sun and sees a notice that Cougar Bikes had cancelled its offer of the $5,000 prize.

Wally decides then to send off a letter to Ethel dated 6 January 2014 saying he accepts her offer to sell the piano and continues riding into Melbourne. Ethel sells the piano to her friend Myrtle May on 7 January 2014 for $6000 and receives Wally's letter on 8 January 2014.

Wally continues with his ride and when he returns to Melbourne, he finds out he was the first and only person who attempted and finished the bicycle ride.

Wally decides to make the arrangements for his mother's birthday party and contacts function caterers and decides on the menu and music and other party needs. Wally pays a deposit and spends the rest of Uncle Alan's money on the party.

Wally decides to go to University instead of doing an apprenticeship and at present can't pay off Uncle Alan.

Advise Wally on whether he has any claims for breach of contract against Ethel or Cougar Bikes.

Advise Uncle Alan on whether he has any claim against Wally.

Give detailed reasons for your answers and cite relevant case law.

1. When the research question, ensure that you:

• identify the issue(s) raised by the facts
• identify the relevant legal principles
• apply the relevant legal principles to the facts
• reach a conclusion

2. You may, and are encouraged to, hand in an introduction or outline of how you propose to answer the questions so that feedback will be provided to you from the communication and study skills staff before you complete the assignment.

Guide to Formal Presentation of the Assignment


1. The assignment should be typed on A4 paper, on one side of the paper only, and with a margin of at least 5 cm.

2. Formal language should be used so avoid jargon, slang and colloquial abbreviations such as “don’t”. Ensure that you use correct spelling.

3. Headings and subheadings may be used if you think that this would assist the presentation of your material.

Referencing sources of information

4. Avoid plagiarism by referencing your sources. Sources must be referenced where:

• You are using someone else’s ideas
• You are quoting directly from a source
• You are paraphrasing someone else’s views

(See Crosling G.M. and Murphy H.M How to Study Business Law- Reading, Writing and Exams, 3rded, 2000, p 122).

5. Footnotes should be used to reference your sources and should appear at the bottom of each page. Do not include substantive material in the footnotes. All substantive material should appear in the body of the assignment.

Citation of cases

6. When you first refer to a case, you should cite the case in full, either in the text or in a footnote e.g. Mabo v Queensland (No 2) (1992) 175 CLR 1. The case name should be italicised or highlighted in some other way e.g. underlined or placed in bold letters.

7. When subsequently referring to the case, it is acceptable to use a common name for the case, such as “Mabo’s case” or “Mabo”.

8. Where a particular page or paragraph in the case is referred to, then the page number or paragraph number must be given e.g. “Mabo’s case at 9” indicates that the information came from page 9 of Mabo’s case. There is no need to write “page” or an abbreviation of the word page.

Citation of statutes

9. When citing a statute, the name of the statute should be italicised and the jurisdiction should appear in brackets after the name e.g. Commonwealth of Australia Constitution Act 1900 (UK).

10. When a particular section in the statute is being relied on, then the section should be specified e.g. section 1. It is acceptable to use the abbreviation “s” for “section” or “ss” where more than one section is being referred to e.g. s 1 or ss 5, 6 and 7. However, when a sentence begins with a reference to a section, the word should always be written in full e.g. “Section 1 of the Commonwealth of Australia Constitution Act 1900 (UK) provides that ...”

Secondary sources

11. When initially referring to secondary sources such as books, the author’s name and initials, full title of the book, edition (if relevant), publication date and page number should be given e.g. Crosling G.M. and Murphy H.M How to Study Business Law- Reading, Writing and Exams, 3rded, 2000, p 122.


12. A bibliography listing all books and articles (not cases or statutes) used in the preparation of the assignment should appear at the end of the assignment.

Guidance from textbooks

13. Use your prescribed textbook and recommended texts as a guide to the way in which cases, statutes and secondary sources are cited and the manner in which legal arguments are structured.