Course Title: Apply legal principles in corporations and trust law

Part B: Course Detail

Teaching Period: Term2 2022

Course Code: BAFI5223C

Course Title: Apply legal principles in corporations and trust law

Important Information:

Please note that this course may have compulsory in-person attendance requirements for some teaching activities. 

To participate in any RMIT course in-person activities or assessment, you will need to comply with RMIT vaccination requirements which are applicable during the duration of the course. This RMIT requirement includes being vaccinated against COVID-19 or holding a valid medical exemption. 

Please read this RMIT Enrolment Procedure as it has important information regarding COVID vaccination and your study at RMIT:

Please read the Student website for additional requirements of in-person attendance: 

Please check your Canvas course shell closer to when the course starts to see if this course requires mandatory in-person attendance. The delivery method of the course might have to change quickly in response to changes in the local state/national directive regarding in-person course attendance. 

School: 525T Business & Enterprise

Campus: City Campus

Program: C6163 - Advanced Diploma of Accounting

Course Contact: Doug Gourlay

Course Contact Phone: +61 3 9925 5944

Course Contact Email:

Name and Contact Details of All Other Relevant Staff

Colin Byron

Nominal Hours: 60

Regardless of the mode of delivery, represent a guide to the relative teaching time and student effort required to successfully achieve a particular competency/module. This may include not only scheduled classes or workplace visits but also the amount of effort required to undertake, evaluate and complete all assessment requirements, including any non-classroom activities.

Pre-requisites and Co-requisites


Course Description

This unit describes the skills and knowledge required to research and analyse legal principles and issues in corporations and trust law matters and then apply this knowledge to provide advice to clients.

It applies to individuals who work with corporations and trust laws in the workplace as determined by the job role, legislation, rules, regulations and codes of practice relevant to different jurisdictions.

Work functions in the occupational areas where this unit may be used are subject to regulatory requirements. This unit is designed to meet educational requirements of the Tax Practitioner Board (TPB). Refer to the FNS Implementation Guide Companion Volume or the relevant regulator for specific guidance on requirements.

National Codes, Titles, Elements and Performance Criteria

National Element Code & Title:

FNSTPB504 Apply legal principles in corporations and trust law


1. Research legal aspects of corporations and trust law relevant to client's circumstances

Performance Criteria:

1.1 Identify client circumstances that require advice on corporation and trust law matters

1.2 Research corporations and trust law and related legislation, regulation and practice

1.3 Identify different types of relevant corporations and trust law transactions, and clearly outline their legal context, establishment procedures and purpose

1.4 Identify legal principles applying to corporation and trust matters that are relevant to client circumstances


2. Analyse issues and risks associated with operation of a business

Performance Criteria:

2.1 Identify areas of risk in application of law in corporation and trust matters

2.2 Analyse how legal issues impact on different types of legal entities

2.3 Evaluate relevance to client circumstances and implication of risks for structure, operation and performance of different types of legal entities

2.4 Assess ways in which risk mitigation is addressed in formation and operation of different types of legal entities


3. Apply knowledge of law to business structures

Performance Criteria:

3.1 Collect and collate client's business information for analysis

3.2 Interpret, analyse and process available information to obtain required knowledge on client's business structure requirements

3.3 Seek advice and guidance of specialist where required, to interpret, analyse and synthesise client's relevant information

3.4 Provide advice to client based on identified facts and relevant laws


4. Maintain legal knowledge

Performance Criteria:

4.1 Review client's circumstances and business structure, and apply any changes in relevant aspects of corporations and/or trust law if necessary

4.2 Access and use systems for maintaining up-to-date knowledge about relevant legal aspects of corporations and trust law

4.3 Review relevant legal sources regularly and apply any changes in daily work

Learning Outcomes

Details of Learning Activities

This subject is a cluster with ACCT5430C Monitor Corporate Governance Activities.

Students will be progressively introduced to skills and knowledge required to research corporate governance reporting trends, examine corporate governance standards and practice and review compliance to develop and implement processes and procedures for meeting corporate governance obligations. Students will also develop skills and knowledge required to apply legal principles in corporations and trust law matters.


In-class activities will account for some of the nominal hours allocated to this course and will include a range of self-paced and collaborative learning activities such as class discussion, completion and review of set exercises and work, tests, team presentation and a comprehensive individual assignment.


The hours of self directed/self paced learning by students will be taken up with reading, research, set work on exercises and the completion of the individual assignment outside scheduled class time. F2F classes are in total three (3) hours per week. The learning activities described will be covered in these classes and we expect you to participate and contribute in all scheduled learning activities.


Teaching Schedule

This course is clustered (i.e. co-delivered and co-assessed) with ACCT5430C - Monitor Corporate Governance Activities. As a result, other than the elements and the critical aspects specific to this course, the two course guides will depict the same information.


Please Note: The nominal hours associated with what is described above (as reflected below) are a guide only and represent the total teaching time and student effort required to successfully complete this course.  This may include not only scheduled classes but also the amount of effort required to undertake, evaluate and complete all assessment requirements, including any non-classroom activities.



Topic Outline

Readings and Activities


     Week   1

Introduction | Welcome and Orientation

Going thru all the content in a week 1-course information and guidelines.

Corporate Governance Introduction     

• Definition of Corporate Governance

  • Need for Good Corporate Governance
  • Corporate Collapses
  • Corporate Governance Structures in Australia
  • Corporate Governance Regulators


Reading:  Power points.

Corporate Governance Principles and Recommendations


Enron Case

HIH Case

Week 2

Choosing a Business Structure

  • Types of Business Structures
  • Advantages / Disadvantages of Business Structures

Reading:  Power-Points

Advantages and Disadvantages summary

Activities: Review Questions

Week 3

The Company 

  • The Corporations Act 2001
  • Separate Legal Entity
  • Shareholders and Limited Liability
  • Classification of Companies
  • Registration
  • Company Obligations
  • Promoters and Pre-incorporation Contracts

Reading:  power points

Saloman vs Saloman case

Replaceable Rules

Activity:  Review Questions

Week 4


  • Division of Power within a Company
  • Types of Directors
  • How Directors are appointed
  • Resignation and removal from Office
  • Appointment of Company Secretary
  • Remuneration of Directors
  • Membership

Reading: Power points

Types of Directors

Activity: Directors Cases

True and False questions

Leaning Quiz 1 & 2 due for submission

Week 5

Directors’ Duties

  • Fiduciary Duties
  • Statutory Duties
  • The insolvent trading rule

Corporate Reporting

Reading:  Power Points

Activity: Directors cases relating to duties, insider trading etc.

Review Questions

Week 6

Share Capital & Fundraising

  • Financial resources of a Company
  • Classes of Shares
  • Issuing Shares
  • Retention of Capital
  • Share Buy-Backs
  • Going Public

Reading: Power points

Call and Put option examples

share placement

Activity: Review Questions

Week 7

Trusts & Superannuation

  • Elements of a Trust
  • Types of Trusts
  • Continuity of Existence
  • Winding up Trusts
  • Superannuation- Purpose, Regulation, types of Superannuation Funds, Regulatory Framework and Proposed Changes

 Reading -Trust power points and Superannuation file

Activity: Review Questions

Week 8

Framework of the Australian Legal System

  • Origins of Law in Australia
  • The Australian Constitution
  • Types of Laws
  • Sources of Law
  • Jurisdiction and Hierarchy of Courts

Reading: Power points

Doctrine of Precedent, equity law, court hierarchy

Activity: Review Questions

Assessment 1 Due to be submitted in CANVAS

Week 9

Negligence and Risk

  • Meaning of Tort
  • What law applies to Negligence
  • The elements of Negligence
  • Negligent Misstatement
  • Pure Economic Loss
  • Defenses to Negligence

Reading:  Power points

Various cases in week 9


Self test questions

Week 10

 External Administration of Companies

  • Voluntary Administration
  • Receivership
  • Winding Up or Liquidation

Reading: Power Points



Review Questions

Week 11

 Risk Management

  • Risk Assessment
  • Risk Management framework
  • Identify Risk
  • Determine possible causes
  • Determine possible consequences
  • Determine current likelihood
  • Determine Risk Rating
  • Risk Treatment

Reading:  Power Points



Review Questions

Assessment 2 Due for submission

Week 12

Corporate Governance Framework  & Ethics

  • Internal Controls and Corporate Governance
  • Corporate Governance Requirements
  • Corporate Governance Structures in Australia
  • Corporate Governance Regulations
  • Standards for good Corporate Governance
  • Management Accountability
  • ASX Corporate Governance Principles and Recommendations
  • Ethical Responsibilities

Reading:  Power Points

Corporate Governance Handout

APES 110 Code of Ethics


Review Questions

Week 13

Assessment 3 Part 2 - Meeting with Billy Wright

This week students will conduct the meeting with Billy Wright to present a recommendation on suitable business structures after considering the circumstances of Billy and his 9 friends

Reading: Read Part 2 of Assessment 3 prior to meeting

This is a requirement for Part 2 of Assessment 3. Students will be allocated a time for the meeting and need to take take minutes during the meeting

Week 14

Final week to complete Part 1, 2, 3 and 4 of Assessment 3

Assessment 3 Due for submission
Week 15 Resubmissions

Week 16

Re-submissions for Assessment 2 and 3

Week 17



Learning Resources

Prescribed Texts


Corporations and Trusts Law 4th Edition (Jan 2019)


Other Resources

Prescribed Textbook is: The application of Legal Principles in Business Corporation & Trust Law by Penelope McCann

Overview of Assessment

Performance Evidence

Evidence of the ability to:

  • research changes to, or new, legislative requirements in relation to corporations and trust law relevant to the client's circumstances and business structure requirements
  • apply current statute, common law and equitable principles in relation to corporations and trust law relevant to the client's circumstances
  • present a recommendation on suitable business structures or legal entities to the client after considering the client s circumstances.

Note: If a specific volume or frequency is not stated, then evidence must be provided at least once.

Knowledge Evidence

To complete the unit requirements safely and effectively, the individual must:

  • describe the operation of the Australian legal systems and processes relevant to corporations and trust law including:
  • basic principles, current statute, common law and equitable principles
  • roles and responsibilities of key organisations
  • constitutional considerations
  • separation of powers
  • basic principles of the law of torts, particularly relating to negligence and negligent misstatement
  • courts and regulatory bodies
  • outline how laws are enacted and their underlying policy aims
  • explain how those laws may be interpreted by existing common law and equitable rules and applied to corporations and trusts
  • analyse legal concepts of business organisational structures, and underlying regulation including the application of these to:
  • sole traders
  • partnerships
  • corporations
  • trusts
  • agencies
  • joint ventures
  • incorporated associations
  • examine legal aspects of superannuation with reference to:
  • ways in which superannuation can be accumulated and taken
  • who can provide superannuation products and how those providers and their products are prudentially licensed and regulated
  • duties of superannuation trustees
  • how superannuation interests are protected and litigated
  • current and future developments in superannuation law and policy
  • identify and reference the key features of Australian corporations law and requirements to analyse issues and risks relating to:
  • nature of a company
  • company registration
  • promoters and pre-registration contracts
  • company constitution and replaceable rules
  • contracting with others
  • fundraising
  • share capital
  • member meetings
  • corporate management
  • directors duties
  • member remedies
  • bankruptcy and insolvency
  • examine legal concepts and scope of law covering trusts with particular reference to:
  • structure of a trust
  • trust deed
  • common law duty
  • role and responsibilities of a trustee
  • types of trusts
  • member meetings
  • corporate management
  • member remediation
  • bankruptcy and insolvency.

Assessment Conditions

Assessment must be conducted in a safe environment where evidence gathered demonstrates consistent performance of typical activities experienced in the tax and legal fields of work and include access to:

  • office equipment, technology, software and consumables
  • relevant legislation, regulations and codes of practice.

Assessors must satisfy NVR/AQTF assessor requirements.

This unit is designed to meet the education requirements of the Tax Practitioner Board (TPB). Where registration with the TPB is sought, assessment must reflect the conditions described by the regulator which stipulate that a significant amount (at least 40%) must be completed under some form of independent supervision. Where recognition of prior learning (RPL) is used, it must also meet the requirements of the Board s policy on RPL.

Details of requirements can be accessed on the TPB website at <>;.

You are advised that you are likely to be asked to personally demonstrate your assessment work to your teacher to ensure that the relevant competency standards are being met.


Feedback will be provided throughout the semester in class and/or online discussions.  You are encouraged to ask and answer questions during class time and online sessions so that you can obtain feedback on your understanding of the concepts and issues being discussed. Finally, you can email or arrange an appointment with your teacher to gain more feedback on your progress.

You should take note of all feedback received and use this information to improve your learning outcomes and final performance in the course. 

Assessment Tasks

Assessment Tasks

Please note that this course is clustered/co-delivered and co-assessed holistically as a group of two (2) course being, ACCT5430C - Monitor Corporate Governance Activities and BAFI5223C Apply Legal Principles in Corporation and Trust Law. As a result, other than the elements and critical aspects to this course, the two course guides will depict the same information.

Task 1: Short answer assessment task (40 questions) - This assessment is due as per CANVAS Syllabus. (Submitted in CANVAS).

Task 2: Product assessment task - There are 3 parts to this task, you will be required to complete  research and prepare a report on Part A -Australian legal systems, corporations and trust law, Part 2 Superannuation and Part 3 Corporate governance failure. 

This assessment is due as per CANVAS Syllabus. (Submitted in CANVAS).

Task 3: This practical assessment will allow students to demonstrate their ability to research and analyse legal principles and issues in corporations and trust law matters and then apply this knowledge to provide advice to clients. There are 4 parts to this task using a business scenario.

This assessment is due as per CANVAS Syllabus. (Submitted in CANVAS).



The Teacher or Course Coordinator may at any time ask students to demonstrate and/or reproduce assessments to validate authenticity.  AND Students must satisfactorily complete all assessment tasks in order to obtain competency in this course.



Assessment Matrix

The assessment matrix that maps all the assessment is available on CANVAS


Submission Requirements


You should:


·   Ensure that you submit assessments on or before the due date. 

·   Always retain a copy of your assessment tasks. (hard copy and soft copy)

·   When you submit work for assessment at RMIT University you need to use the Assessment task document that includes a declaration and statement of authorship that must be signed.

·   Each page of your assessment should include footer with your name, student number, the title of the assessment, unit code and title and page numbers.


Other Information


Late Submission Procedures

You are required to submit assessment items and/or ensure performance based assessment is completed by the due dates.

If you are prevented from submitting an assessment item on time, by circumstances outside your control, you may apply in advance to your teacher for an extension to the due date of up to seven calendar days.

More Information:

Where an extension of greater than seven days is needed, you must apply for Special Consideration.  Applications for special consideration must be submitted no later than two working days after the assessment task deadline or scheduled examination.

More Information:


Resubmissions (VE Programs):

If you are found to be unsuccessful in a particular Course Assessment Task (or you do not submit/attend) you will be allowed one resubmission.  Your teacher will provide feedback regarding what you need to do to improve and will set a new deadline for the resubmission. 

If you are still not meeting the assessment requirements you must apply to your Program Manager in writing outlining the steps you will take to demonstrate competence in your course. Your submission will be considered by the Program Team and you will be advised of the outcome as soon as possible.

Grading & re-submissions

Successful re-submissions will contribute a CA only (Competency Achieved) result to your overall grade for the course.

Adjustments to Assessment

In certain circumstances students may be eligible for an assessment adjustment. For more information about the circumstances under which the assessment arrangements might be granted please access the following website:


Marking Guide (Competency):


You must demonstrate that you have all the required skills/knowledge/elements in the unit of competency you are studying.


You will receive feedback on each assessment task that will inform you about your progress and how well you are performing.

Course Overview: Access Course Overview