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LAW3422 Succession Law

Semester 3, 2012 External Toowoomba
Units : 1
Faculty or Section : Faculty of Business and Law
School or Department : School of Law

Contents on this page


Examiner: Corin Sankey
Moderator: Katie Murray


Pre-requisite: (LAW3204 or LAW5704) and (LAW3206 or LAW5706)

Other requisites

Students are required to have access to a personal computer, e-mail capabilities and Internet access to UConnect. Current details of computer requirements can be found at //


Succession law is an important area of legal practice as it deals with what happens to a person's estate on the death of that person, including questions such as:
1.How are wills made, changed and interpreted?
2.When and why should a testator's will be subject to challenge?
3.To what extent should a testator be obliged to make provision in his or her will for certain classes of people (such as spouses and children)?
4.What happens when a person dies without a will?
5.How is a deceased estate administered?

In addition to considering these questions and the topics set out below, the course includes introductory skills in legal drafting and aims to give students a basic awareness of some of the other relevant issues in this area, such as the proposals for uniform succession laws, taxation considerations and issues surrounding superannuation.


On successful completion of this course students should be able to demonstrate:

  1. fundamental knowledge of succession law
  2. the intellectual and practical skills needed to identify, research, evaluate and synthesise relevant factual, legal and policy issues
  3. the ability to learn and work independently
  4. written communication and legal drafting skills
  5. legal problem solving skills including the ability to: identify and articulate legal issues; apply legal reasoning and research to generate appropriate responses to legal issues; engage in critical analysis and make a reasoned choice amongst alternatives; and think creatively in approaching legal issues and generating appropriate responses
  6. understanding of local and national contexts and perspectives in law and related areas, including indigenous and multicultural perspectives.


Description Weighting(%)
1. Introduction to succession law 10.00
2. Distribution on intestacy 10.00
3. Family provision 10.00
4. Making a Will 10.00
5. Revocation, alteration, republication and revival of Wills 10.00
6. Drafting and construction of Wills 15.00
7. Gifts by Will and failure of gifts 10.00
8. Personal representatives and grants of administration 10.00
9. The process of estate administration 10.00
10. The future of succession law 5.00

Text and materials required to be purchased or accessed

ALL textbooks and materials available to be purchased can be sourced from USQ's Online Bookshop (unless otherwise stated). (

Please contact us for alternative purchase options from USQ Bookshop. (

  • Preece, AA 2007, Lee?s manual of Queensland succession law, 6th edn, Thomson Lawbook Co, Pyrmont, New South Wales.
  • LAW3422 course content CD available for purchase from the USQ bookshop. Note that course content is also available on-line via the USQ Study Desk.
  • Legislation - Succession Act 1981 (Qld) - this can be downloaded at

Reference materials

Reference materials are materials that, if accessed by students, may improve their knowledge and understanding of the material in the course and enrich their learning experience.
  • Croucher, RF & Vines P 2009, Succession: families, property and death: text and cases, 3rd edn, LexisNexis Butterworths, Chatswood, New South Wales.
  • Mackie, K 2007, Principles of Australian succession law, LexisNexis Butterworths, Chatswood, New South Wales.
  • Rowland, C 2009, Hutley?s Australian wills precedents, 7th edn, LexisNexis Butterworths, Chatswood, New South Wales.

Student workload requirements

Activity Hours
Assessments 80.00
Directed Study 39.00
Private Study 46.00

Assessment details

Description Marks out of Wtg (%) Due Date Notes
PROBLEM-BASED QUIZ 10 10 30 Nov 2012
2-HOUR EXAMINATION 60 60 End S3 (see note 1)

  1. The examination is scheduled to be held in the end-of-semester examination period. Students will be advised of the official examination date after the timetable has been finalised.

Important assessment information

  1. Attendance requirements:
    If you are an international student in Australia, you are advised to attend all classes at your campus. For all other students, there are no attendance requirements for this course. However, it is the students' responsibility to study all material provided to them or required to be accessed by them to maximise their chance of meeting the objectives of the course and to be informed of course-related activities and administration.

  2. Requirements for students to complete each assessment item satisfactorily:
    To satisfactorily complete an individual assessment item a student must achieve at least 50% of the marks. (Depending upon the requirements in Statement 4 below, students may not have to satisfactorily complete each assessment item to receive a passing grade in this course).

  3. Penalties for late submission of required work:
    If students submit assignments after the due date without prior approval of the examiner; then a penalty of 5% of the total marks gained by the student for the assignment may apply for each working day late up to ten working days at which time a mark of zero may be recorded.

  4. Requirements for student to be awarded a passing grade in the course:
    To be assured of receiving a passing grade a student must achieve at least 50% of the total weighted marks available for the course.

  5. Method used to combine assessment results to attain final grade:
    The final grades for students will be assigned on the basis of the aggregate of the weighted marks obtained for each of the summative assessment items in the course.

  6. Examination information:
    This will be an open examination. Candidates may have access to any printed or written material and a calculator during the examination.

  7. Examination period when Deferred/Supplementary examinations will be held:
    Any Deferred or Supplementary examinations for this course will be held during the next examination period.

  8. University Student Policies:
    Students should read the USQ policies: Definitions, Assessment and Student Academic Misconduct to avoid actions which might contravene University policies and practices. These policies can be found at

Assessment notes

  1. Referencing in assignments: Students studying this course must use the Australian Guide to Legal Citation (AGLC) style. For AGLC style guide enquiries, consult the AGLC manual from the USQ Library?s referencing guide at //, or contact the Law Librarian.

Other requirements

  1. Computer, e-mail and Internet access: Students are required to have access to a personal computer, e-mail capabilities and Internet access to UConnect. Current details of computer requirements can be found at //