module specification

LL6001 - Equity and Trusts (2017/18)

Module specification Module approved to run in 2017/18
Module title Equity and Trusts
Module level Honours (06)
Credit rating for module 30
School Guildhall School of Business and Law
Total study hours 300
219 hours Guided independent study
81 hours Scheduled learning & teaching activities
Assessment components
Type Weighting Qualifying mark Description
Coursework 20%   Letter-writing
Unseen Examination 80%   Unseen or part-seen exam
Running in 2017/18
Period Campus Day Time Module Leader
Year City Tuesday Afternoon

Module summary

The ideas of Equity continue to play a decisive part in the resolution of issues of property ownership.  Trusts, including Charities and Pension Funds, play a vital part in the economic life of the country and are increasingly recognised as indispensable modes of wealth protection or asset mobilisation throughout the world. Thus ‘Equity and Trusts’ is recognised as a Foundation subject in the training of all lawyers, and its subject-matter is essential mental furniture for anyone expecting to play a responsible role in business or society .

Module aims

To consider the role of Equity in the resolution of contemporary legal problems
To examine the nature of the Trust as a key element of Property Law, and the functions of Trusts in society and legal practice
To reinforce students’ abilities in the application of law and problem-solving
To introduce students to issues arising in the administration of the estate of a deceased person (as a typical form of Trust)
To enhance students’ employability by emphasising the opportunities and positive aspects of providing legal guidance for families suffering bereavement or caring for a person with a disability
To underline to students the significance of numeracy in lawyers’ work 


History and contemporary functions of Equity
Trusts and the Administration of Estates
Creation of Express Trusts, including formality rules
The operation of trusts, the fiduciary principle, the rules for investments
Secret trusts, protective trusts,
Resulting and constructive trusts; cohabitants’ homes
Breach of trust, personal and proprietary actions for recovery of property

Learning and teaching

The Learning and Teaching strategy will be substantially geared to the demands of an unseen or part seen examination in a complex area of law. Lectures or large-group sessions will be used to present and discuss unfamiliar areas of law. Student understanding will be constantly checked and consolidated in tutorials.

• At the same time it is recognised that the module has a responsibility as a ‘gateway’ towards professional training and will thus integrate:
• an introduction to the (transferable) skills of letter-writing and numeracy
• sensitisation to issues of morality and professional ethics through discussions of the concepts of conscience and unconscionability, and the code of conduct expected of a fiduciary

On-line resources will be used to ensure that every student has: the key principles of law in digestible learnable form and practical materials such as Trust documents, Executors’ Oaths etc to provide ’concrete’ support for student understanding. Blended learning will encompass user-friendly revision aids such as self-administered multiple choice tests, linked to avatar-based interactive learning ‘Games’

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of the Module students will:

A have up to date knowledge and a critical and analytical understanding of -
1 The significance of equitable and fiduciary concepts in the resolution of property issues
2 The rules relating to the creation of Trusts
3 The purposes, forms and operation of Trusts as a means of mobilising assets for the benefit of individuals, associations and public institutions
4 The nature and extent of the obligations of persons in a position of trust and the remedies for their breach
5 The distinctive features of Charity and the ‘third sector’
6 The fundamental aspects of systems of taxation and their application to Trusts
7 The nature and ambit of ‘Private Client’ work carried out by solicitors and barristers

B be able to -
1 Identify legal issues in complex and unfamiliar contexts, select, state and apply the law
2 Apply the rudiments of the techniques of legal drafting and letter-writing
3 Reflect upon and criticise what has been learnt

Assessment strategy

Assessment strategy is informed by the idea that, although by no means all students will go on to professional courses, this module is likely to be the ‘gateway’ module en route to professional qualification. Thus it is thought desirable to have a skills-based assessment by way of preparation for the vocational courses, and a relatively demanding  unseen or part-seen examination to sharpen students’ work-organisation skills and encourage articulacy under pressure; with the aim  of ensuring our graduates are in possession of graduate level capabilities 


NB Students must use the most recent edition of the books cited.

Edwards, R, & N Stockwell, Trusts and Equity  (Pearson Longman )
Martin, JE, Equity and Trusts, (Thomson Sweet & Maxwell)
Pearce, R, J Stevens, & W Barr, Law of Trusts and Equitable Obligations (Oxford University Press)
Warner-Reed, E, Equity and Trusts (Living Law series), (Pearson Longman)
Watt, G, Equity and Trusts Law (Directions series), ( Oxford University Press)
Watt, G, Trusts and Equity, (Oxford University Press)