LAWCOMM 457 - Consumer Law

Credit points: 15 points
Offered: Summer School
Contact hours: Lectures – 6 hours per week
Course Coordinator: Karen Fairweather
Pre-requisite: LAW 201, 211, 241

Course description


This course provides an advanced, in-depth examination of laws designed specifically or primarily to protect consumers.


Content outline

This course will consider the particular vulnerabilities of consumers, the theoretical rationales for consumer law and the panoply of regulatory techniques that can be deployed in the protection of consumers. There will be a particular focus on: misleading or deceptive conduct under s 9 of the Fair Trading Act 1986 (FTA);  other instances of unfair conduct under Part 1, FTA; consumer  guarantees in respect of goods and services under the Consumer Guarantees Act 1993; unfair contract terms in standard form consumer contracts under ss 46H-46M, FTA; layby sale agreements under ss 36B-J, FTA; uninvited direct sale agreements under ss 36K-S, FTA; enforcement and remedies; selected issues in consumer credit law.  


Multiple-choice quiz (5%)

1250 word research report (25%)

2 hour open book exam (70%)

Open book means that you may, if you wish, bring into the exam and refer to any materials such as casebooks, textbooks and study notes.

Recommended texts

Course book

It is strongly recommended that you purchase a physical copy of the course book, particularly as the exam is open book.


Students will also need to refer to the following pieces of legislation:

Fair Trading Act 1986

Consumer Guarantees Act 1993

Credit Contracts and Consumer Finance Act 2003

Recommended text:

 There is no prescribed text, but the following text is recommended:  

K Tokeley (ed), Consumer Law in New Zealand (2nd ed, LexisNexis, Wellington, 2014).

 Students may also find the following helpful:

D Wilson, The Fair Trading Act Handbook (LexisNexis, Wellington, 2018)

B Allan, Law of Consumer Credit (Thomson Reuters, Wellington, 2017)