Business and Employment Law

Business and Employment Law

We realise for many of you this is the first time that you have ever studied law. The aim of this handbook is to support your learning and to provide guidance and study skills advice.
The information contained in this handbook will be invaluable to you when you come to complete your coursework assignments. You are advised to read it as soon as you receive it and regularly refer to it as time goes by. It contains useful guidance on matters that will assist you to do well in the unit.
Please read and try to take on board all that is said and written about this Unit – it is all intended to help you. The more you listen to us and read what you are asked to read, the easier it becomes to give you credit. Your tutors do, after all, want you to do well!
Please take responsibility for finding out what you need to know and what you need to do. At University, the burden is on the student to make himself or herself aware of what has to be done – be that retaking a unit or making sure that you are doing units which will give you sufficient credits in a year. This handbook provides a lot of information and will answer many of your questions. If not don’t panic – the information will be available elsewhere – you need to seek it. If in doubt, ask your personal tutor – but be pro-active, don’t wait until it is too late to be told that there is a problem.
Good luck!
The aims of this unit are:-
1. To inculcate a knowledge and understanding of the English legal system, basic principles of contract law and the tort of negligence within a business environment together with general principles of the law governing the most significant elements of the employment relationship;
2. To equip students with an understanding how to use law as a strategic management tool and to enable students to apply the law to practical situations;
3. To encourage independent study and the development of the skills which are needed to enable students to apply knowledge in both an academic environment and in industry and commerce. Wherever possible the unit will identify the relevance of these areas of law to the business world.;
4. To develop the skill of analysis and problem-solving.
Syllabus Outline
The topics covered in the unit include:-
1 An outline of the sources and classification of law
2 Principles of contract and the tort of negligence.
3 Dispute management: tribunals and courts
4 Contract of Employment – especially contract as a strategic device.
5 Managing change
6 Redundancy
7 Introduction to the law relating to unfair dismissal including managing performance and discipline
8 Equal opportunities including equal opportunities in recruitment, training promotion and remuneration
Learning Outcomes
On successful completion of this unit students should be capable of :-
1 Demonstrating a detailed knowledge of the law and practice in key areas of contract, negligence and employment law;
2 Recognising, understanding and applying appropriate case law and legislation to realistic business problem scenarios;
3 Critically evaluating the law relating to contract, negligence and employment law;
4 Understanding principles of law governing the employment relationship;
5 Analysing complex factual situations and identifying and applying relevant legal concepts in order to reach balanced conclusions and provide advice and recommendations.
Teaching and Planned Activities
The unit will be delivered by means of one lecture and one seminar per week for 11 weeks. In week 12 students will be required in their own time to complete formative assessments relating to the topics covered in the preceding 11 weeks. These will be found on Moodle.
Attendance at lectures and seminars is important and is closely monitored
Lectures will introduce the relevant legal principles, cases, legislation and procedure. The seminars will follow on from the lecture and require students to:
? participate in class discussions relating to particular questions; and
? analyse, solve and discuss problems related to particular issues.
There is a Moodle site for this unit. Important information will be communicated via Moodle including matters to do with coursework.
You will find useful articles and web links related to topics in the syllabus in the seminar materials folder.
Access to Moodle is essential. Please contact the unit co-ordinator
(Helen Burton) as soon as possible if you are unable to access the site.
Teaching Timetable – Autumn Teaching Block
Week beginning
22 September
Introduction to the unit
Classification & sources of law
What is law?
29 September
Domestic legislation and European law
Classification and sources of law
6 October
Case law and judicial precedent
How to read and understand cases
Legislation and statutory interpretation
13 October
Introduction to contract law
Contract formation
Case law and judicial precedent
How to read and understand cases
20 October
Contractual terms
Contract formation
27 October
Controls on exemption clauses and unfair terms
Contractual terms
3 November
Controls on exemption clauses and unfair terms
10 November
Discharging a contract
Remedies for breach of contract
17 November
Introduction to torts
Discharging a contract
Remedies for breach of contract
24 November
Introduction to torts
1 December
Vicarious liability, defences and remedies in tort
8 December
Work on Moodle
Work on Moodle
Enterprise & Employability Week
Monday 13 October to Friday 17 October 2014
Christmas Break
Monday 15 December 2014 to Friday 2 January 2015
Coursework Hand in Date
Friday 9 January 2015
Teaching Timetable – Spring Teaching Block
Week Week beginning Lecture Seminar 1 January 5th Introduction, Employment Tribunals and Employment Status Introduction to Employment Law 2 January 12th The Contract of Employment Employment Tribunals and Employment Status 3 January 19th Express & Implied Terms of the Employment Contract The Contract of Employment 4 January 26th Restraint on Trading Clauses Express & Implied Terms of the Employment Contract 5 February 2nd General Principles of Anti-Discrimination Law Restraint on Trading Clauses 6 February 9th Equal Pay General Principles of Anti-Discrimination 7 February 16th Termination of Employment Equal Pay 8 February 23rd Fair Reasons for Termination Termination of Employment 9 March 2nd Grievances and Termination Procedure Fair Reasons for Termination 10 March 9th Redundancy Grievances and Termination Procedure 11 March 16th Transfer of Undertakings Redundancy 12 March 23rd Work on Moodle Transfer of Undertakings Work on Moodle
Easter Break Monday 30 March to Friday 17 April 2015 Easter Bank Holidays Friday 3 April and Monday 6 April 2015 Consolidation and Assessment Period Monday 20 April to Friday 29 May 2015 (Within this period, the formal examination weeks run from Tuesday 5 May to Friday 29 May 2015) Second Attempt Assessment Period Monday 6 July to Friday 24 July 2015
Second Attempt Coursework Submission Date: Friday 24 July 2015
Your attendance is important and will be closely monitored. Statistics show students who do not have a good attendance record in seminars perform less well in coursework compared to those students with better attendance records.
At the beginning of each teaching block you will be given a booklet containing the seminar materials for that period. You should bring it with you to every seminar.
Each week, students are expected to:-
a. complete the preparatory reading stated at the top of that week’s seminar questions;
b. prepare answers to those seminar questions (which are based on the previous week’s lecture and the preparatory reading.) These should be prepared in advance of the seminar;
c. carry out 5 hours of independent study per unit per week during term time to support lecture and seminar activity.
Personal Behaviour In Seminars
Talking or using mobiles inappropriately in lectures and seminars is frowned upon. There is no suggestion that you should sit in silence in seminars – we welcome discussion and questions which seek to clarify understanding of the topics in question.
What is inappropriate, however, is chatting about matters unconnected with the seminar or lecture. Background chat distracts other people in the group – many find it irritating when they are trying to listen – and it is, frankly, discourteous.
It is quite something for a lecturer teaching adults who are paying for their own course to have to tell students to be quiet. Please respect your fellow students and members of staff by only speaking up when it is appropriate.
Lucy Jones Introduction To Business Law 2nd edition OUP
ISBN 978-0-19-966287-6
You need access to this book from September
This is a clear, concise and user friendly textbook, which is ideal for business students who are studying law as part of their course. There are also excellent on-line resources which accompany the book.
There are many other books and articles covering the syllabus that will be useful for you to refer to from time to time throughout the unit. Some of these books and articles are referred to in the further reading list below and/or in the further reading section at the end of seminar questions.
The core text provides an excellent starting point from which to gain a good understanding of the law covered in this unit. However, students are reminded that, as well as doing some additional reading from time to time for seminars, they need, and are expected to do additional reading. The suggested texts set out below will be a useful starting point for wider reading. Most, if not all, of the books listed below are available from the University Library.
Please speak to Linda Jones (the law librarian) if you have any trouble getting hold of them ([email protected]).
All-round texts Smith & Keenan’s English Law 17th edition
Kelly, Hammer and Hendy Business Law 2nd edition
Card and James’ Business Law 3rd edition
Ewan Macintyre essentials of business law 4th edition
Contract law Paul Richards, Law of Contract, 11th edition
Tort law John Cooke Law of Tort 11th edition
Employment law Selwyn’s Law of Employment 18th edition
Welsh & Strevens Employment Law
Please do acquire and read text books and do as much further reading as possible – it will materially improve assessment marks and general understanding.
Good news – there is NO exam for this unit!
There are 2 assessments for this unit:-
1. The first assessment is due in to the Undergraduate Centre on the ground floor of Richmond no later than
FRIDAY 9 January 2015
It is worth 40% of the overall mark and is set out on the next page. It is also on Moodle. No paper copies will be handed out.
2. The second assessment is due in to the Undergraduate Centre on the ground floor of Richmond no later than
It is worth the remaining 60% of the overall mark and will be on Moodle in January.
It is a 2000 word answer to a legal problem question based on topics covered in the second teaching block after Christmas. No paper copies will be handed out.
To help you with these assessments look especially at the sections in this Handbook on how to answer legal problem questions, how to reference your sources, how to get a good mark and the assessment criteria.
First Assessment
(worth 40% of your overall mark for this Unit)
Please read the following and answer the questions set out at the end
HAND IN DATE NO LATER than 3.00pm on Friday, 9th January 2015 to Assessment Office in the Undergraduate Centre on the ground floor of Richmond Building. You will need to complete the appropriate front sheet which can be obtained from the Undergraduate Centre.
FONT + LINE SPACING You must use Arial (point12). The lines must be double spaced.
WORD LIMIT 1500 words excluding footnotes and bibliography. The word count should be stated on the front sheet in the appropriate box. A falsely stated word count may result in a mark of 0%. Failure to state a word count will result in a 5% penalty. Coursework that is more than 10% over or under the word limit will result in a 10% penalty.
FOOTNOTES Should be used to reference sources.
REFERENCING Students must reference sources using the Oxford Standard for the Citation of Legal Authorities (OSCOLA). Details of this can be found in your Handbook, on Moodle or by visiting
Students should ensure that all sources are fully cited in footnotes and in the bibliography.
PLAGIARISM Students are reminded of the need to avoid plagiarism. The University Regulations describe plagiarism as:-
“The incorporation by a student in work for assessment of material which is not their own, in the sense that all or a substantial part of the work has been copied without
any adequate attempt at attribution, or has been incorporated as if it were the student’s own when in fact it is wholly or substantially the work of another person or persons.”
Any student suspected of plagiarism may be referred to the Head of Department and the appropriate action taken.
MARKS University Regulations stipulate marking be done 20 working days after 9th January 2015. Marks will be released to you on or before 6th February 2015. You will receive an email from the Undergraduate Centre when scripts are ready for collection.
FEEDBACK Personal feedback for guidance on progress and understanding will be given on each marked script. Details of when and where these will be available for collection will be given via an email to students from the Undergraduate centre after 6th February 2015. Additionally an outline answer to the coursework question and generic feedback will be on Moodle after 6th February 2015. Informal feedback will also be given in seminars.
ELECTRONIC COPY Students should retain an electronic copy of their coursework, so that it may be checked by a member of staff should a member of staff feel the need to do so. Staff are entitled to request an electronic copy of coursework if they are in doubt about the accuracy of the stated word count and/or suspicion of plagiarism. Failure to send an electronic copy of the coursework requested by a member of staff who has asked for a copy may result in a penalty.
QUERIES Please ask your seminar tutor or lecturer
ASSESSMENT CRITERIA Please see the Unit Handbook.
Please read the following case study and answer the questions set out at the end
On Saturday Fernando sees an advertisement in the local paper,
First edition of Lord of the Rings, signed by JK Tolkein
for sale £7000 Telephone Simon on 01234 – 60000
or e-mail simon’
Fernando, who knows Simon’s address, immediately puts a cheque in the post for the full asking price together with an additional sum to cover postage and package, with a note asking Simon to send the book directly to him.
On Sunday evening Arthur e-mails Simon and asks if Simon will accept £6,500 for the book. Simon replies that the book is offered for sale at £7,000 and if he wants
it he must email him back. Immediately Arthur emails Simon back saying he does want to buy it for £7,000 and will put a cheque in the post to him that day. This email arrives in Simon’s inbox but he mistakes it for spam and so deletes it without opening it. Arthur puts a cheque in the post that evening.
On Monday morning having received nothing in the post Simon sells the book for £15,000 to Gollum Books Ltd. and emails Arthur saying the deal is off.
Simon’s wife Fern, runs a coffee bar in Southsea. She goes to Good Buys, the local supermarket to purchase some coffee for her business and whilst cycling through Good Buys’ car park she is hit by Joe, a fork lift truck driver working for Good Buys. Joe has only recently passed his test. As she entered the car park Fern had seen a notice which stated ”Good Buys accepts no responsibility for any loss or damage to property or persons however arising”. Fern is knocked unconscious, gashes her head and damages her bicycle. She was not wearing a helmet. There is evidence showing Joe was driving too fast and showing off to his friends.
(i) Advise Simon if he has any contractual liability to Fernando and or Arthur
(50 marks)
(ii) Advise Fern on any contractual and or tortious claims she may have against Joe and or Good Buys, including a discussion on whether the notice will prevent her making any claim against Good Buys.
What is a problem question?
A legal problem question describes a fictitious scenario and then asks you to advise one or more of the parties as to their legal rights or possible liabilities arising out of the scenario.
It is important to read the instructions of the problem question. You may be required to advise all the individuals in the scenario or just one. Do not waste time and words advising people when the question has not asked you to do so. It is also important to accept the facts of the problem question. Do not argue what might have been.
A good method to use when tackling problem questions is the ILAC method which creates a logical structured answer: ILAC stands for Issue, Law, Application and Conclusion
Issue: Identify what legal issue needs to be addressed. This can often be the most difficult bit of a problem question. You need to identify what legal question needs to be answered. Eg Does Johnny have a contract or has Jane been negligent when she drove too fast and caused the accident?
Law: You must state the law governing the issue you have identified. Eg. For a legal contract to exist an offer must have been accepted and consideration pass between the parties -It is essential that you make reference to case law or statute to back this up.
Application: Apply the law to the facts of the question. Eg. Johnny has not paid for his shopping. Reference to cases is vital at this stage.
Conclude: Make sure you conclude as to what will happen to the person you are advising. Eg. It is likely that a court will find Johnny has no contract and so not entitled to the items from the shop.
Test yourself by using the ILAC method to answer the question below. Work through events one at a time.
Sandra has decided to buy a car. On Monday, Bill tells Sandra that he has decided to sell his car at a price of £2,500. Sandra says she is very interested, but would like to think about it. Bill says:’ I assume you want it unless you tell me otherwise by Saturday.’ On Friday, Sandra meets Ken who tells her that Bill has just agreed to sell the car to Jamie for £2,700. Sandra, who has decided she wants the car, immediately puts a letter in the post accepting Bill’s offer. Later on that day, however, she changes her mind and calls on Bill to tell him to ignore the letter. Bill tells her that the deal with Jamie has fallen though and he is still keen to sell to Sandra.
Advise Sandra of her legal position.
In your coursework assignments you should reference your sources using the Oxford Standard for the Citation of Legal Authorities (OSCOLA) method.
What are Sources?
? When you are making a point about law you must cite a statute or case law e.g. In English law misrepresentation is a false statement of fact not opinion, as held in Bissett v Wilkinson.
If you cannot find a statute or case to back up what you are saying you need to question whether this is really the true state of the law.
? To find out what the law is you should look at textbooks, or lecture notes. These will point you in the direction of the relevant cases and statutes. You need to cite the primary sources. Eg. ‘A person cannot by reference to any contractual term exclude or restrict his liability for death or personal injury’ You should back this up by citing S.2(1) of the Unfair Contract Terms Act 1977 not p37 of Helen Burton’s lecture notes 2014
? When you are making a criticism, explaining how the law works, giving an opinion or suggesting reform you will use opinion based authority such as journal articles or textbooks. If you are unsure how to go about finding such material please go to a library workshop.
? Be precise in your citation. Cite the section of the Act or the page in the book not just the entire book or Act.
Why Cite?
Believe it or not the purpose of citation is not to torture you! You must give the references of the sources you have used so that the reader can find the original material if they want to. If you claim for example that Donoghue v Stevenson established that England has banned all snail products in drinks manufacturing, the person reading your work might want to look up page 567 of the English Reports to check that you have interpreted that source correctly. Using Oscola means that the reader has all the information necessary to do this.
Another reason for citing is to give credit to the original authors for the ideas that you are using. If you don’t cite, you present those ideas as your own and this is an academic offence. (See plagiarism on page 24). This is why it is so important to give full citations.
Where to go to learn about referencing
1 Visit the library homepage and click on referencing, the link is on the right hand side in the middle below the link to information resources
2 The Library will be holding drop in clinics during the year. More details to follow.
3 If you need further assistance regarding referencing, please speak to the law librarian Linda Jones. You can email her [email protected]
Students are reminded of the need to avoid plagiarism in all assessments. The University Regulations describe plagiarism as:
‘the incorporation by a student in work for assessment of material which is not their own, in the sense that all or a substantial part of the work has been copied without any adequate attempt at attribution, or has been incorporated as if it were the student’s own when in fact it is wholly or substantially the work of another person or persons.’
Any student suspected of plagiarising will be referred to the Head of Department and an Academic Misconduct Hearing will be arranged. Students should ensure that all sources are fully cited in footnotes and in the bibliography and that indentation or quotation marks (as appropriate) are used when quoting. Students who fail to include a bibliography will be penalised.
If any student has a query about any of the above matters and wishes to obtain clarification or further information please contact your seminar tutor or personal tutor.
The points below have been submitted by lecturers and tutors. Every year, they come across the same problems and errors in work that is submitted and have to make the same comments in feedback.
The points below are not concerned with your understanding of a particular topic, but how you can present your work so that your understanding can be given the maximum credit by the marker.
Incorrect use of terminology is a major bugbear. See examples below:
1. Judgment in a legal context is spelt – Judgment
2. Liable ‘of’ something = wrong
Liable for something = correct
3. Mixing criminal and civil law terms – someone can only ‘prosecuted’ for a criminal offence and ‘sued’ in a civil matter. The terms are never interchangeable.
4. Similarly someone is only described as ‘guilty’ in a criminal matter. In a civil matter they are ‘liable’.
5. Please avoid US legal terminology – we do not start a ‘suit’ against someone in the UK – we ‘sue’ them, or ‘begin an action’ or ‘make a claim’ against them.
6. Make sure you capitalise proper nouns – Parliament, Human Rights Act 1998.
7. When saying out aloud case names, be aware that there is a right way to say them.
R v Jones should be read as ‘R against Jones’. It should never be read as
R vee Jones
R versus Jones.
R v Jones is a criminal case – how can you tell this?.
R stands for Regina – the Latin for ‘Queen’ – so the state is prosecuting Jones for an offence he/she is alleged to have committed.
Occasionally just to confuse you (mostly in older cases) criminal cases can be written – Smith v Jones. This is because in some old cases, the name of the police officer who brought the defendant before the court appears as the prosecutor eg Chief Constable of Nottingham v Blogs
Cooper v White – this is a civil case, as there are the names of two private individuals. This should be read as ‘Cooper and White’ – never as ‘Smith vee Jones’ or ‘Smith versus Jones’.
In some cases, the name appears as ‘Re Smith’ only. The ‘re’ is Latin and means ‘in the matter of’ – so ‘Re Smith’ means ‘In the matter of Smith’. This type of title may crop up in cases concerning a person’s will or bankruptcy, so there is not necessarily any other parties involved. ‘Re’ is said as one word – some rhyme it with tree and some with tray – it all depends on how much Latin you learned at school! Either is fine.
8. Judges’ names and titles. When you see the following written, this is how you say it:
DDJ Smith – Deputy District Judge Smith
DJ Smith – District Judge Smith
HHJ Smith – His Honour Judge Smith
Smith J – Mr (or Mrs) Justice Smith
Smith LJ – Lord (or Lady) Justice Smith
Lord Smith – Lord Smith
You may sometimes see a couple of judges listed as Smith and Jones JJ or Smith and Jones LJJ – this denotes first Mr Justice Smith and
Mr Justice Jones and second Lord Justice Smith and Lord Justice Jones. It is better not to read their names and just say ‘JJ’ or ‘LJJ’ at the end.
9. Evaluate your sources before using them. Wikipedia, for example, is an excellent invention, but it is not an appropriate source to be using for a law essay – it lacks the authority of case or statute law, as well as that of academic writers. Using such sources may well lead to your being penalised for poor research and content (often referred to in feedback as ‘poor scholarship’).
10 Be careful also when trawling the internet for help on your given topic. The Library runs workshops on ‘Good Googling’, which help you to be a discerning user of the internet. Remember that not all of the pages you turn up will be accurate, they may be referring to the law of another country and they may be written from a biased point of view by a pressure group. Often, they will just be at too simple a level for you, aiming just to describe a topic in outline.
11 Learn to argue rather than assert. An assertion is OK and can be right even if unsupported eg everyday facts – ‘it is hot when the sun shines’. An argument needs to give the reader a reason why he/she should agree with you so you need to support your view with evidence. The best evidence being a judge’s comments in a case!
12. If you are picked up on grammar regularly, then you may need to speak to ASK (Academic Skills Unit) or Learning Support. Howling grammatical errors are really irritating to read – one common example is ‘would of’ instead of ‘would have’. You must seek help if your grammar or spelling is shaky – better address it now before you have to start writing job applications.
13. Poor writing style. Don’t write long convoluted sentences – one idea per sentence please.
14. Make sure you know the proper name of any legislation you use. For example it is the Sale of Goods Act 1979, not the Sales of Goods Act 1979.
15. Plagiarism This is more serious than just a pet hate – it is an assessment offence and probably the worst academic sin that there is.
You may not pass off as your own work the work of others. Remember that this may take many forms apart from simply copying directly or buying an essay answer. If you quote from a source and fail to reference it correctly, then that may also be considered plagiarism. If you rely very heavily on another text when writing your piece and fail to reference it correctly, then this may be plagiarism. If in any doubt, speak with Linda Jones, our Subject Librarian, and she can advise you.
16. Over-reliance on another text (even with referencing) – so that the structure, choice of arguments, cases discussed, etc all match very closely – or work which is really a series of lengthy quotations sandwiched together by the odd sentence of your own – but referenced correctly. If you reference all of this, then it is not plagiarism – however, it will be very weak work, because it will demonstrate almost none of your own personal understanding of the topic – it is all the ideas and words of someone else that you have simply selected.
17. You do not identify yourself by name in assessed work – we mark anonymously. It is, in fact, an assessment offence to try to undermine anonymity.
18. Lack of proof reading before coursework is handed in. This usually boils down to not leaving sufficient time to read the work through before it is handed in. Please do plan your assessment schedule and factor in the time to put the finished piece of work to one side so that you can return to it and have a final proof read before submission. At worst, failure to proof read can lead to work that is impossible to follow because of spelling and grammatical mistakes – and also where cutting and pasting
of text has not been properly incorporated, so that the work actually makes no sense. Be aware also that word processing programmes will sometimes change what you have written incorrectly – or will miss spelling mistakes because the typo may be a correctly spelled but be a different word. This may lead to ridiculous results. For example – contact instead of contract, tortuous for tortious and even testes for tests!
19. Word processing programmes can pick up common points so do use the grammar and spell checker. You should use UK English not American English.
Follow the instructions given with the assessment and read the questions carefully.
Answer the question posed not the question that you would like to answer because you have found some fantastic article on it!
Not reading the feedback on coursework. You are entitled to expect feedback from us which identifies what you need to do to improve your work and explains adequately its strengths and weaknesses. However, before coming to see a tutor to challenge a mark or seek clarification, do read your work again, with the feedback – it may become clearer why you were given that mark. Ultimately, if you are unhappy with a mark or need more feedback, don’t suffer in silence – come and ask.
Once you have read the feedback, please do respond to it by addressing your weaknesses so your marks will improve next time.


Assessment Two Case Study 2014 – 2015

Tasks:  This second piece of coursework consists of questions based on a case study and requires you to:-

•    Recognise, understand and apply appropriate case law and legislation to realistic business problem scenarios

•    Critically evaluate the law relating to employment law

•    Understand principles of law governing employment relationships

•    Analyse complex factual situations and identify and apply relevant legal concepts in order to reach balanced conclusions and provide advice and recommendations.

Due Date: The coursework must be submitted to the Undergraduate Centre by or on Monday 27th April 2015 (the windows of the Undergraduate Centre are usually open between the hours of 0830 and 1600 daily but do check for any notices to the contrary). Remember to attach the appropriate cover sheet.

Word Limit: 2000 words excluding footnotes and bibliography.  The word count should be stated on the university front sheet.  Failure to state a word count will result in a 5% penalty. A falsely stated word-count may result in a mark of 0%.  Note that footnotes, if used, should be used to reference sources only.  Examiners are free to disregard footnotes that contain inappropriate information or information that should belong in the main text.  Coursework that is more than 10% over the word limit will result in a 10% penalty (as, inter alia, concision is an important skill).
Footnotes: Should be used to reference sources.
Referencing: Students must reference sources using the Oxford Standard for the Citation of Legal Authorities (OSCOLA). This can be found at Reference should be made to the primary source, except when the primary source can no longer be obtained. Poor citation of sources will result in a loss of marks. Students who are having difficulty citing sources should visit

Plagiarism: Students are reminded of the need to avoid plagiarism.  The University Regulations describe plagiarism as:
‘the incorporation by a student in work for assessment of material which is not their own, in the sense that all or a substantial part of the work has been copied without any adequate attempt at attribution, or has been incorporated as if it were the student’s own when in fact it is wholly or substantially the work of another person or persons’.

Any student suspected of plagiarising will be referred to the Head of Department and an Academic Misconduct Hearing will be arranged.  Students should ensure that all sources are fully cited and that indentation or quotation marks (as appropriate) are used when quoting.  Failure to include a bibliography will result in a 5% penalty, unless the lecturer/tutor has advised you that a bibliography is not required.
Electronic Copy of Work: Students should retain an electronic copy of their coursework, so that it may be checked by a member of staff should a member of staff feel the need to do so. Failure to send an electronic copy of the coursework to a member of staff who has asked for a copy may result in a penalty.
If any student has a query about any of the above matters and wishes to obtain clarification or further information please contact your seminar tutor.
Some Further Guidance:

Research: Whilst lecture notes and textbooks are of assistance, you should also read
and apply appropriate primary source materials or case notes / head notes (e.g. you are
not expected to read through numerous 40+ page case reports).  Citation of textbooks in lieu of primary sources is not good form but secondary sources may contain useful analysis. In your answer, relevant legal authorities, i.e. relevant decided cases and statutory provisions, should be cited in support of your arguments. When using textbooks, ensure that you use up-to-date books and be careful as to the currency of primary materials. Any secondary sources you consult and/or quote from should be suitably identified in the bibliography.  You do not need to – and should not – reference lecture notes.

Presentation: Your answer should be word-processed and properly structured.  You will see below (and on the Moodle site) that the assessment criteria refers to among things accuracy, research and presentation.  Please note that as this is coursework, there is less leniency with regard to these as you are not writing under exam conditions.  So, please check that your sources are suitably cited, undertake and demonstrate your research and further reading, try to structure your answer so that it reads well, and do read over your answer to help ensure that use and flow of language, grammar and spelling are more than satisfactory.

Style: Be objective and analytical. Phrases such as ‘I believe’ or ‘I feel’ should be
avoided as they suggest a lack of objectivity and critical approach. You are expected
to consider all aspects of each problem; use of the word ‘assuming’ may indicate that
you are not doing this (unless you then go on to present alternative assumptions which may show fuller analysis). In the blue  Handbook you were given in September there is plenty of information on how to tackle this assignment including how to structure an answer using the ILAC formula, referencing and what your bibliography should look like.

Assistance: If you have queries regarding the case study or general revision, these should be posted on the Moodle discussion forum for this unit so that everyone can benefit from them. As with some previous law units, assessment-related questions will only be answered through this means (i.e. not by email or one-to-one conversation). We shall not directly answer questions which are based on the scenario, but should welcome questions regarding clarification of legal principle or, indeed, other topics related to the Unit.  Please remember that this is an individual assessment and note the definition of plagiarism above.

Some guidance on Assessment Criteria

To achieve a pass on each of the questions there must be some evident knowledge and understanding of the relevant law and, as they are problem questions, some attempt to apply it.  The better the explanation of the law and the better the ability to apply and discuss it (including the citation of relevant primary sources), the higher the mark to be awarded.  Detailed facts of cases are not expected unless this is inherently required by the question, because of its similarity to/distinguishability from a previously decided case, or doing so assists the explanation of the law.

For an answer to be awarded a mark in the upper second/first class range it must, among other criteria, explain and apply/evaluate the law correctly and coherently and generally cite relevant legal sources and authorities (some deduction should be made for inappropriate use of old Acts/Regs but an otherwise good answer could still get a reasonably good mark).  Conclusions, which are consistent with the discussion, should be provided along with an explanation of any remedies that may be awarded (if applicable).  Evidence of wider research, a fuller understanding and a strong analytical ability should be evident for a first class mark.

Case Study – Problems at Softy Furnishings Ltd

Softy Furnishing Ltd (SF) is a small local firm which produces a number of decorative items for the home including cushions, curtains and bed linen. Hoping to bring its brand image up to date, the firm has just employed Roz who, straight from University, has some great ideas about how the firm’s products can be recreated to bring a modern feel to the home and how working practices can be brought up to date.  Abbie has been a machinist at the firm for three years and has always enjoyed being allowed to plod along with her work, machining seams on cushions.  Roz has brought in some new (very fast equipment) to speed up production but Abbie is refusing to use the machines as she says that as she was trained on more manual machines she should be allowed to continue to use them. Roz has promised training but Abbie says that she is happy to continue with what she is doing.  Roz also wants to make changes in the warehouse however she often feels intimidated by the lads working in there. Dennis, Roz’s line manager has now told her that any changes she wants to make in the warehouse must go through him and that he will deal with the men in that part of the firm. Roz is not happy with this and tells him so but Dennis says that his decision is final and for her own good.
Roz is also having problems with Shabana who, in Roz’s eyes is lazy. Shabana has been employed with the firm since September 2013.  Dennis has agreed with Roz that they cannot afford to keep people on if they are not pulling their weight and therefore tells Roz that she can dismiss Shabana but to make sure she gets her full notice entitlement.

Two Questions – note each question is equally weighted.

Question 1     Advise Abbie as to whether she is obliged to use the new equipment.
50 marks

Question 2    Advise Roz as to any action she can take in relation to the comments made by Dennis
50 marks

For this assessment please ignore any reference to Shabana.

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