International Commercial Law LLM

 
  

Fact file

Qualification
LLM International Commercial Law
Duration
1 year full-time, 2 years part-time
Entry requirements
2.1 (or international equivalent) in law
Other requirements
IELTS
7.0 (with no less than 7.0 in writing, 6.5 in reading and 6.0 in speaking and listening)

If these grades are not met, English preparatory courses are available
Start date
September
Campus
University Park
School/department
Law
Tuition fees
You can find fee information on our fees table.
 

Overview

This course examines how an increasingly globalised economy requires commercial law to meet a variety of challenges, from the transactional to the regulatory to dispute resolution, and from shipping to finance to access to markets.
Read full overview

The LLM International Commercial Law reflects international business in its diversity, innovation, and contemporary relevance. Spanning a number of specialist areas, this LLM allows you to study those topics that appeal to you, such as international trade, maritime law, private international law, intellectual property, public procurement, banking and finance, as well as those regimes created by the EU and the World Trade Organization.

The school boasts an internationally renowned team of international commercial lawyers, combining established experts with exciting early-career scholars. Published scholarship is extensive, with every member of the academic staff engaged in high quality research.

Key facts

  • The School of Law was ranked 41st best law school in the world, and 9th in the UK, by the QS World Rankings by Subject 2016
  • Since its introduction in 1987, our LLM programme has continued to grow in popularity and prestige and now attracts some 140 to 160 students each year, from more than 50 countries, confirming its status as one of the leading LLM programmes available
  • Research-led teaching means that you will be exposed to current issues, advanced debate, and innovative thinking and regular guest seminars and lectures, delivered by distinguished scholars and practitioners complement teaching in the school
  • Dedicated resources for students in the school, including a Legal Skills Advisor who delivers workshops and one-to-one sessions, a Law School computer room, and a Law Reading Room in the Hallward Library, contribute to a unique and positive learning experience
  • The school enjoys professional relationships with international institutions, leading UK law firms, private industry and consultancies, government departments, both foreign and domestic, and non-governmental organisations
 

Course details

You must complete at least 90 credits worth of modules from the qualifying specialist module options for the International Commercial Law LLM. The remaining 30 credits required to complete the taught stage of the degree can be chosen from the full suite of modules offered across all of our LLM programmes.

In addition, you must choose a dissertation topic which falls within the field of international commercial law. Guidance and support on deciding a dissertation topic and designing your project will be provided through bespoke workshops and one-to-one support.

Teaching

The LLM programme operates small group seminar teaching wherever possible, allowing for an integrative and interactive learning experience. You are encouraged and expected to prepare for, and participate in, seminars so that you get the maximum benefit from these teaching sessions.

Modular assessments

All taught courses are assessed by examination or essay, or a combination of both. All assessments take place at the end of the spring term.

Practice assignments, workshops on issues such as exam technique and time management, as well as one-to-one sessions with the Legal Skills Advisor are offered throughout the academic year to prepare you for these assessments.

 
 

Modules

Qualifying module options

Advanced Copyright and Design Law

The module will deal with special issues in copyright and designs and their international exploitation at an advanced level. The British, European and international law relating to these rights will be studied in detail. Comparison will also be made with national Member States laws.

Special topical issues in copyright and designs law will be studied including the protection of computer programs, databases and technological protection measures. National and Community unregistered and registered design rights. Finally you will be given an insight as to the future of copyright and designs at EU and international level.

 
Commercial Conflict of Laws

This module will involve a critical analysis of the conflict of laws rules dealing with issues arising in a commercial context. The module begins with jurisdiction and recognition and enforcement of foreign judgments. The module then deals with choice of law issues in contract and tort.

Because of the growing role of the European Union in this area, the interaction between European and traditional English approaches to commercial conflict of laws issues will be a pervasive theme of the module.

 
EU Competition Law

The module examines the legal regulation of competition within the single and free market of the EU and serves as an introduction to basic legal and economic principles as well as to detailed study of the rules of Union law which seek to outlaw competitive behaviour.

 
International and Comparative Copyright Law

The module will deal with the basic principles of copyright law at an advanced level. British copyright law will be studied with reference to the international and European obligations of the United Kingdom in this respect. This covers an introduction to copyright law, subject-matter of protection, authorship, ownership and dealings, economic and moral rights, term of protection, infringement and defences.

 
International and Comparative Patent Law

The module will deal with the basic principles of patent law and it will do so from an international and comparative perspective. Special attention will be paid to European and US patent law before attention will turn to biotechnological inventions and a case study on stem cell patents.

 
International and Comparative Trade Mark Law

The module will deal with the basic principles of trade mark law and it will do so from an international and comparative perspective. Special attention will be paid to European and US trade mark law before attention will turn to passing-off and comparative advertising issues.

 
International Aspects of Corporate Law and Insolvency

The module covers the following:

  1. Introduction to company law, insolvency and global business operations
  2. Effective business forms for global operations: group structures and organisational patterns
  3. Companies crossing borders: doing business abroad
  4. Harmonisation of company laws and supranational business forms
  5. Regulating enterprise groups - a comparative and international perspective
  6. The quest for harmonisation and uniformity in insolvency
  7. The European Regulation on Insolvency Proceedings
  8. The UNCITRAL Model Law on Cross-Border Insolvency: a global solution for international insolvencies
  9. Insolvency of multinational enterprise groups
 
International Commercial Arbitration

This module offers the fundamentals of international commercial arbitration, the most important dispute resolution mechanism for international business transactions.

The module begins with the legal framework of international commercial arbitration. It then deals with jurisdiction of arbitration tribunals and certain procedural issues arising in arbitration practice. The module ends with the setting aside and recognition and enforcement of arbitral awards. 

The module focuses mainly on English law of arbitration which is put in comparative perspective and compared and contrasted especially with the UNCITRAL Model Law on International Commercial Arbitration.

 
International Consumer Protection

The module examines the role of the law in regulating business and protecting the consumer. 

It begins by looking at economic and social theories of regulation, identifying what we seek to achieve through regulating, and why regulation is necessary in a competitive market. Next, it examines how we regulate by identifying and critiquing the techniques of regulation. The module then examines how businesses can be held to account through sanctioning, both under the criminal law and in other ways. 

Next, the module looks at the protection of consumers' economic interests (in particular through unfair commercial practices law) and consumers' physical integrity (in particular through product safety law). The module ends by examining the theory and practice of enforcement.

 
International Financial and Monetary Law

This module focuses on the public law regulation of international financial and monetary relations, and not on the contractual or transactional aspects of international financial markets. It aims to provide a timely and insightful overview of current regulatory developments in the field of capital and current international transactions as well as financial and monetary stability and supervision. 

The module also considers the role of major institutions in the regulation of international lending and finance for development. Special topics, such as the sovereign debt crisis and regulatory efforts to combat money laundering and terrorist financing or the future of the international financial and monetary system may be covered.

 
International Investment Law

This module deals with key aspects of the international system for the regulation of foreign investment. The module focuses primarily on issues arising from investor-host state relations under Bilateral Investment Treaties or BITs and some other International Investment Agreements or IIAs but also touches upon international investment contracts, where relevant.

Special attention will be given to the means of regulating investment using such instruments, including standards of treatment and breaches thereof, the taking of foreign property and the settlement of investment disputes by means of arbitration.

 
International Law of the Sea

The module will consider:

  • the history and evolution of the law of the sea 
  • baselines, internal waters and the territorial sea 
  • straits, archipelagos and the contiguous zone
  • the continental shelf and exclusive economic zone 
  • the high seas
  • the international seabed area and ice-covered areas
 
International Relations Law of the EU

This module is concerned with the EU's attempts to assert its international identity.

Subjects being examined will include:

  • the issue of competence and effectiveness of the EU as a global actor
  • the Common Commercial Policy
  • the EU/WTO relationship
  • international development
  • human rights conditions in trade/development agreements
  • common foreign and security policy
  • the EU as a 'regional superpower'
 
International Sale of Goods

This module deals with international sales of goods, as they are conducted in the international commodity markets according to the rules of English law. It does not cover the United Nations Convention on the International Sale of Goods 1980 and similar instruments.

 
Law of International Carriage of Goods by Sea

This module considers the legal regime applicable to the carriage of goods by sea and, in particular, the legal relationship between the shipper (or owner of the goods), the carrier (shipowners) and the recipient (consignee) of the goods shipped.

 
Law of International Trade Finance

The module addresses the private law relating to the financial aspects of international trade, especially payment mechanisms and guarantees. Emphasis is placed upon the rules promulgated by the International Chamber of Commerce.

 
Law of Marine Insurance

This module addresses the law relating to the contractual provision of marine insurance, particularly insurance of hulls and cargo, by the London insurance market. Considerable emphasis is placed upon the contractual clauses promulgated by the International Underwriting Association of London.

 
Maritime Law

The module is designed to address the law relating to maritime casualties, their aftermath and transactions associated with shipping.

 
Public Procurement in EU and International Trade Law

This module examines the regulation of government procurement at international level for the purpose of opening up government markets to free trade. It provides a detailed examination of the system under EU Law, which has provided a model for other international systems, and of government procurement regulation in the WTO.

 
Public Procurement Law

This module examines issues relating to the regulation of public procurement from perspectives other than trade liberalisation. Issues covered include:

  • the pursuit of value for money through competition
  • avoidance of corruption
  • outsourcing
  • procurement for privately-financed infrastructure projects

The module pays particular attention to the UNCITRAL Model Law on procurement and the procurement rules for developing countries' projects financed by the World Bank.

 
The World Trading System

This module deals with key aspects of World Trade Organisation Law. It focuses on:

  • the institutional and organisational structure of the WTO and dispute settlement
  • GATT (dealing with tariffs and other barriers to import of goods)
  • GATS (the agreement regulating international trade in services) 
  • rules on unfair trade such as anti-dumping, subsidies and safeguards

Some attention is also paid to the relationship between regionalism and globalisation and to the issues of preferential trade and development.

 

 

The modules we offer are inspired by the research interests of our staff and as a result may change for reasons of, for example, research developments or legislation changes. This list is an example of typical modules we offer, not a definitive list.

 
 

Funding

The School of Law advertises a variety of funding opportunities each year, please see the funding opportunities webpage for further information.

There is also funding information on the Graduate School website.

International and EU students

The University of Nottingham offers a range of masters scholarships for international and EU students from a wide variety of countries and areas of study.

Applicants must receive an offer of study before applying for our scholarships. Applications for 2017 entry scholarships will open in late 2016. Please note the closing dates of any scholarships you are interested in and make sure you submit your masters course application in good time so that you have the opportunity to apply for them.

The International Office also provides information and advice for international and EU students on financing your degree, living costs, external sources of funding and working during your studies.

Find out more on our scholarships, fees and finance webpages for international applicants.

 
 

Careers

Our postgraduate students move into an extraordinarily wide range of careers. Many graduates either go into the legal profession or return to their previous legal careers with their experience and prospects enhanced by their experiences on the course. A large number also work with NGOs, or return to their countries with the relevant skills to help add to the future development of that country.

A selection of graduates progress onto our PhD programme each year, in order to progress their academic career. These students often choose to stay at The University of Nottingham beyond their doctorate, with a number of our current academics having completed both the LLM or Masters and PhD programmes with us before becoming members of staff.

Average starting salary and career progression

In 2015, 93% of postgraduates in the School of Law who were available for employment had secured work or further study within six months of graduation. The average starting salary was £27,031 with the highest being £40,800.*

* Known destinations of full-time home higher degree postgraduates 2014/15. Salaries are calculated based on those in full-time paid employment within the UK.

Career prospects and employability

The acquisition of a masters degree demonstrates a high level of knowledge in a specific field. Whether you are using it to enhance your employability, as preparation for further academic research or as a means of vocational training, you may benefit from careers advice as to how you can use your new found skills to their full potential.

Our Careers and Employability Service will help you do this, working with you to explore your options and inviting you to attend recruitment events where you can meet potential employers, as well as suggesting further development opportunities, such as relevant work experience placements and skills workshops.

 
 
 
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