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LEGL101 Introduction to Business Law: Legal Frameworks for Businesses

Teaching organisation

3 hours per week for twelve weeks or equivalent.

Unit rationale, description and aim

There are two practical reasons for Business Students to learn about Taxation. First, most taxpayers are subject to income tax, and to function in a global business or ethical investment environment, it is useful to know some basic principles of taxation law. Second, one of the major fields of accounting and financial practice is taxation law. Against this backdrop the unit examines taxation imposed by statute: the Income Tax Assessment Act 1997 (Cth) and the Income Tax Assessment Act 1936 (Cth), the Goods and Services Tax (GST) and the Fringe Benefits Tax (FBT). The unit provides an introduction to the major legal principles by which income tax is levied on individuals, partnerships, companies and trusts. The unit examines the key principles relating to taxation law in Australia, in particular, what is income, what is deduction, how various entities are taxed, the administration of the taxation system and the impact of tax offsets.

Learning outcomes

To successfully complete this unit you will be able to demonstrate you have achieved the learning outcomes (LO) detailed in the below table.

Each outcome is informed by a number of graduate capabilities (GC) to ensure your work in this, and every unit, is part of a larger goal of graduating from ACU with the attributes of insight, empathy, imagination and impact.

Explore the graduate capabilities.

On successful completion of this unit, students should be able to:

LO1 - explain the key principles of taxation law in respect to Income Tax, GST and FBT (GA5, GA8) 

LO2 - assess and give basic advice on how the law may be applied to different taxation problems (GA4, GA5) 

LO3 - explain and evaluate the taxation treatment of different taxation entities and learn to develop appropriate tax management strategies for business and different entities. (GA5, GA6) 

Graduate attributes

GA4 - think critically and reflectively 

GA5 - demonstrate values, knowledge, skills and attitudes appropriate to the discipline and/or profession 

GA6 - solve problems in a variety of settings taking local and international perspectives into account

GA8 - locate, organise, analyse, synthesise and evaluate information 


Topics covered: 

  • Introduction and Overview of the Australian Tax System 
  • Concepts of Income, source, derivation and residence, tax treatment   
  • Concepts of accounting treatment, implications of GST, business v hobby, small business concessions.   
  • Trading Stock, principles of Fringe Benefits Tax, non-cash business benefits.  
  • Key principles of Capital Gains Tax.   
  • Introduction to general allowable deductions.   
  • Specific deductions, decline in value for depreciating assets, repairs superannuation, limitations on deductions. 
  • Introduction and overview of GST, BAS and the payment system.  
  • Introduction to entities, individuals, offsets relevant to individuals and the Medicare levy. 
  • Taxation of Companies, Taxation of dividends and the Imputation system.   
  • Taxation of Trusts and Taxation of Partnerships.   
  • Overview of International tax issues, residence, withholding tax, double tax agreements.   

Learning and teaching strategy and rationale

Mode of delivery:  Lectures, tutorials and workshops on campus or mixed mode 

Pattern of attendance and duration: 12 week-semester or equivalent.  

Learning and teaching strategiesLectures will be used to introduce and explore concepts and issues. Tutorials and computer-laboratory classes will enhance understanding and develop skills. They will involve guided discussion, demonstration problems and case studies. 

Assessment strategy and rationale

A range of assessment procedures will be used to meet the unit learning outcomes and develop graduate attributes consistent with University assessment requirements. Such procedures may include, but are not limited to: essays, reports, examinations, student presentations or case studies.  

Overview of assessments

Brief Description of Kind and Purpose of Assessment TasksWeightingLearning OutcomesGraduate Attributes

Assessment Task 1: Quiz / Case Studies 

The first task is an individual assessment. Students are expected to conduct legal analysis individually, by identifying the correct issue(s), explaining the relevant law, demonstrating the ability to apply the law in the given context, reaching a logical conclusion to solve a legal problem question in the given context, and reaching a logical conclusion to solve a legal problem question.  

This task requires students to undertake legal analysis in a problem-solving context. 


Submission type:  Individual 

Assessment Method: Case Studies   

Artefact: Written response  



GA5, GA8 

Assessment Task 2: Written Legal Advice  


This assessment task consists of a 1500-word written advice. This task requires students to work collaboratively to demonstrate the ability to research an area of tax law and provide written advice to a client setting out the reasons for their opinion. 


Submission type: Group 

Assessment Method:  Report  

Artefact: Written report  



GA5, GA6

Assessment Task 3: Exam 


This assessment task consists of a 2-hour final exam. The purpose is to further assess a student’s ability to synthesise knowledge and apply it to relevant fact patterns and prompts as it relates to business enterprises. 


Submission type: Individual  

Assessment Method: Exam 

Artefact: Exam paper with responses 



GA4, GA5 

Representative texts and references

CCH 2020 (or recent edition), Australian Master Tax Guide, CCH, Sydney. 

Friezer ML, Fullerton IG, Hanley PJ & Snape TJ, Australian tax handbook 2020 (or recent edition), Thomson Reuters, Sydney. 

Guilders F 2011 (or recent edition), Understanding taxation law 2011, 5th edn, Butterworths, Sydney. 

Hart G, Coleman C, Jogarajan S, Sadiq K & McLaren J 2019 (or recent edition), Principles of taxation law, Thomson Reuters, Sydney. 

Koit P 2011 (or recent edition), Thomson Reuters tax examples 2011, Thomson Reuters, Sydney. 

Obst W, Smith DM & Hanegbi R 2011 (or recent edition), Successful Tax Study, Australian Tax Practice. 

Pinto D & Kendall K 2020 (or recent edition), Fundamental Tax Legislation, Thomson Reuters, NSW. 

Sadiq K (ed) 2020 (or recent edition), Principles of Taxation Law, Thomson Reuters, Sydney. 

Woellner P et al 2020 (or recent edition), CCH Australian taxation law , CCH, Sydney. 


Useful websites: (taxation rulings, general tax information) (legislation and cases) (legislation) (media releases and proposal to new laws) 

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