Answering Tort Problems

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Answering Tort Problems

©Tracey Aquino

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Answering questions

Read the question carefully Plan your answer Adopt a structured approach Do not waffle or repeat yourself If a problem question - IRAC Identify Issue Rule – state the rule of law used with case name if possible Apply that rule to the facts Come to Conclusion – add criticism if possible Repeat with next issue until you have covered all issues

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Tort Problem Structure

Start by identifying the tort involved Define the tort – make sure you know definition for negligence Take each element of the tort in turn and see whether – according to the rules of law – that element exists in this case- ie duty – breach – causation - damage Only at end should you deal with defences and vicarious liability Remember to add criticism and quality content – quotes from cases if you can

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STYLE OF ANSWERS (Note ignore reference to take home exam… we don’t know what your exam will be yet!)

Answers should be written in complete sentences and paragraphs – not note form Check spelling and grammar Do not use the phrase “ I” or “ we” even if the problem asks that advice is given Write objectively – “ It is submitted that…Logically it follows… consequently..however..in contrast…” Always use the law – do not write as if you were having a casual conversation in a pub. If using a case for the legal rule – you do not need to cite its facts – but if you are drawing a comparison or contrast use the facts of the cited case. DO NOT REPEAT FACTS AT START!

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Advance Planning

Summarise your notes Produce a list of key legal issues that will need to be discussed/ written about for your problem You control the problem – not the other way around! Write each legal point / issue and then see how the facts of the problem determine the outcome of that legal point/ issue Remember you will need to discuss duty, breach, causation, damage, defences and vicarious liability

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