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LAWS450 Law of Restitution

The law relating to claims, quasi-contractual or otherwise, which are founded upon the principle of unjust enrichment.

The Law of Restitution is a loose confederation of legal rules that have one thing in common: the defendant has been unjustly enriched at the expense of the plaintiff. In all other respects, the law is highly diverse, ranging from claims arising out of explicit transactions between the parties (i.e. restitutionary remedies in which one party has broken a contract) to claims between complete strangers (i.e. mistaken improvement of another's land); and from the accidental (i.e. money paid under mistake) to the deliberate (i.e. transactions entered into under duress and coercion).

Paper title Law of Restitution
Paper code LAWS450
Subject Law
EFTS 0.1000
Points 15 points
Teaching period First Semester
Domestic Tuition Fees (NZD) $646.20
International Tuition Fees (NZD) $2,856.00

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LAWS 202 and LAWS 203 and 36 further LAWS points
Pre or Corequisite
LAWS 301 and any 200-level LAWS paper not already passed
Limited to
LLB, LLB(Hons)
Not all optional papers will be available in any given year.
Teaching staff
Professor Struan Scott
Course materials are provided by the Faculty.
Graduate Attributes Emphasised
Global perspective, Interdisciplinary perspective, Lifelong learning, Scholarship, Communication, Critical thinking, Cultural understanding, Ethics, Environmental literacy, Information literacy, Research, Self-motivation, Teamwork.
View more information about Otago's graduate attributes.
Learning Outcomes
Students will:
  • Have an understanding of the various conceptions of the principle of unjust enrichment advanced by judges and academics in commonwealth jurisdictions
  • Have a general overview of the the legal materials within the law of restitution
  • Be able to critically analyse the case law relating to this field.
Paper Structure
The method of instruction is a combination of lectures and small group student-led seminars. To accommodate the seminars, scheduled classes may be replaced with others to be held at another time. This will be done with the agreement of members of the class.

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First Semester

Teaching method
This paper is taught On Campus
Learning management system


Stream Days Times Weeks
L1 Tuesday 09:00-09:50 9-13, 15-22
Thursday 09:00-09:50 9-13, 15-22