LLM Law of Agency

Module leader: Keith Uff

Teaching and assessment (2017-18): Semester 1, 1 x 6,000 word essay

Module description:

The Law of Agency is concerned with legal transactions carried out through intermediaries. Since most commercial transactions are carried out on behalf of corporate bodies, they necessarily involve the use of agents acting for the parties. After a brief introduction dealing with the definition of agency and the establishment of the agency relationship, the course goes on to consider in some detail the making of contracts by agents and the power of the agent to bind the principal. The central concept here is the agent’s authority, which may be actual (express), usual, implied or apparent (ostensible). We then go on to examine the doctrine of undisclosed principal and the duties which the principal and agent owe to each other and the remedies for breach of these duties. We conclude with the law relating to the payments between the principal, agent and third party, the doctrines of merger and election and a brief examination of the law relating to torts committed by the agent.

Seminar topics:

  • Introduction to Agency. Formation of the Agency relationship
  • The Establishment of Agency by Ratification
  • The Authority of the Agent I
  • The Authority of the Agent II
  • Rights and Duties of the Principal and Agent in Contracts with Third Parties
  • The Doctrine of Undisclosed Principal I
  • The Doctrine of Undisclosed Principal II
  • Rights and Duties of the Principal and Agent at Common Law and in Equity
  • Rights and Duties of the Principal and Agent under the Commercial Agents Regulations 1983
  • Payments between Principal, Agent and Third Party. Merger and Election. Liability of the principal for torts committed by the Agent