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List and explain three characteristics of effective laws.

Known to the public- if the people do not know about a new law, they will not be able to follow it. This is why major laws are usually reported in the media to avoid this situation (roadsigns)
Acceptable to the community- If a law is not in line with community values, then people may be inclined to disregard the law. (Seat belts)
Able to be enforced- If people break the law, they must be able to be caught and brought to justice. If this does not happen, people may be less inclined to follow the law. ( road traffic laws)


How do legal rules differ from non-legal rules? Explain two points of difference.

Legal rules are made by parliament and are enforceable by the courts. (Traffic laws)
Non legal rules are made by private individuals or groups in society, such as parents and schools, and are not enforceable by the courts. (School rules, rules of games)


Provide three reasons for why laws are needed in society. Use examples to illustrate.

1. To protect our society and keep it functioning.
2. The law aims to protect individual rights and stop behaviour that will ultimately affect the peace and good order of society.
3. Laws are needed to provide guidelines of acceptable behaviour and prevent conflict.


What is the difference between criminal and civil law?

Criminal acts against the state where it aims to protect society and punish offenders.
Civil law involves the protection of individual rights. Someone's rights have been infringed and they will seek compensation.


How does the standard of proof required differ in civil and criminal cases?

The standard of proof in criminal cases is 'Beyond Reasonable Doubt' and in civil cases it is the 'Balance of Probabilities'.


Why is it likely that the jury returned a not guilty verdict in the Jaidyn Leskie Case?

Despite leads, and the arrest and trial of a prime suspect, Leskies murder remains unsolved. The jury had reasonable doubt.


List the two houses of the Commonwealth Parliament and label them as the upper or lower house.

Upper house- Senate
Lower house- House of Representatives


List the two houses of the Victorian Parliament and label them as the upper or lower house.

Upper house- Legislative Council (40 seats)
Lower house- Legislative Assembly (89 seats)


Explain the basic role of the House of Representatives.

House of Representatives- Their role is to represent the people, introduce and pass proposed laws (bills), review bills passed by the Senate and form the government. They initiative the governments agenda, they response to society (eg terror). The government consists of all the elected members of the political party that has the majority of the members in the lower house. (150 members in total)


Explain the basic role of the Senate.

The senate consists of 76 senators. Each state elects 12 senators and each territory elects two. The role of the senate is to introduce and pass proposed laws and review bills passed by the House of Representatives. Seen as House of review, as most Bills are introduced in the lower house and reviewed in the upper house.


Outline the role of the crown in our legislative process. Who is the current Governor-General?

Uphold the constitution and provide royal assent. Governor General is Peter Cosgrove. He is the queens represantive to the Commonwealth of Australia.


Why does the law need to change? Illustrate with examples of baseline sentencing and the coward punch laws.

The law should change when the need arises, to reflect the needs of the people. The need for a change in the law is usually highlighted when a problem in society becomes apparent. A baseline sentence is the sentence that parliament intends as the median sentence for the offence. The coward punch laws have been introduced in Victoria, mandating a now 10 years for a jail sentence for an unexpected punch that takes a life. This law was pushed through by pressure groups and the media.


What is a subordinate authority?

Authorities that have been given the power by an Act of Parliament ( an enabling act) to make rules and regulations. Eg: VicRoads, EPA.


Why does parliament delegate law making authority to subordinate authorities?

They do not have the time and expertise in a certain area of choice. This is why parliament delegates law making powers to subordinate bodies such as statutory authorities, Government departments, executive council and local council.


Explain two methods that can be used by individuals and groups to assist in changing the law. Use examples.

Unions- when workers in a certain industry join a union that is appropriate, and use legal power to enforce and protect workers with industrial law. (Teachers union, nurses Union)
Pressure group- a group that tries to influence public policy in the interest of a particular cause (One Punch Can Kill)


List and describe 3 stages that a bill must go through in parliament before becoming an Act of Parliament.

1) Initiation- title of the bill is read out.
2) First reading- copies of the bill are circulated- bill briefly read out.
3) Second reading- speech outlines the purpose of the bill. Debate and a vote then take place. Consideration in detail occurs. House breaks into committed to analyse bill in depth. Amendments are made here and each clause of the bill is discussed.


What was the grounds of the complaint of the plaintiff's in the Black Saturday Bushfire case?

The breach of duty of care (negligence) caused by SPAusNet resulted in the cause and severity of the bushfire which led to deaths and major damages.


What is a class action?

A lawsuit filed by an individual on behalf of a group.


Relate the standard of proof in a civil case to the Black Saturday Bushfire Case. What had to be shown?

It was the balance of probabilities. What had to be shown was that the plaintiff had to be more convincing then the defendant depicting the balance of proabilities.


What were the parties in the Black Saturday Bushfire case seeking? On what grounds?

They were seeking compensation as the result of a breach in the duty of care from SPAusNet and other associating companies. This is the grounds of negligence.


What is the executive council?

A body made up of the Governor General (governor at state level) and senior ministers. It's task is to pass delegated legislation in areas where an enabling act has given power to the executive council.