LL4Z9      Half Unit
Banking Law

This information is for the 2021/22 session.

Teacher responsible

Professor Jo Braithwaite


This course is available on the LLM (extended part-time), LLM (full-time) and University of Pennsylvania Law School LLM Visiting Students. This course is available with permission as an outside option to students on other programmes where regulations permit.

This course has a limited number of places and we cannot guarantee all students will get a place.

Course content

This course focuses on the private law of banking as it relates to the core banking activities not covered elsewhere on the LLM (i.e., on courses about the financing activities of banks; the debt markets and the regulation of banking activities). In particular, we look at the deposit-taking relationship, the legal issues surrounding bank payment services, and the inter-disciplinary debates about the nature of money and payments. The course aims to be both domestic and international in perspective, though the emphasis will be on English law. Topics include: 1. The deposit-taking relationship, including the duty of confidentiality; 2. Money, transfers of money and payment including the development of new digital currencies and decentralised payment systems, including the debates about central bank digital currencies; 3. Bank payment methods: funds transfers and unauthorised payments; and 4. Bank payment services in an international context, letters of credit.


This course will have two hours of teaching content each week in Michaelmas Term, either in the form of a two hour seminar or an online lecture and one hour class. There will be a Reading Week in Week 6 of Michaelmas Term.

Formative coursework

Students will be asked to submit one essay, which may be written in exam conditions. Students will also be expected to take part in individual and group presentations during the course.

Indicative reading

For introductory purposes, students are referred to Cranston et al, Principles of Banking Law (OUP, 3rd ed, 2017). Full reading lists will be distributed during the course. Please note that students will be expected to locate and prepare primary legal sources including English cases and legislation for this course.


Exam (100%, duration: 2 hours, reading time: 15 minutes) in the summer exam period.

Course selection videos

Some departments have produced short videos to introduce their courses. Please refer to the course selection videos index page for further information.

Important information in response to COVID-19

Please note that during 2021/22 academic year some variation to teaching and learning activities may be required to respond to changes in public health advice and/or to account for the differing needs of students in attendance on campus and those who might be studying online. For example, this may involve changes to the mode of teaching delivery and/or the format or weighting of assessments. Changes will only be made if required and students will be notified about any changes to teaching or assessment plans at the earliest opportunity.

Key facts

Department: Law

Total students 2020/21: 59

Average class size 2020/21: 15

Controlled access 2020/21: Yes

Value: Half Unit

Guidelines for interpreting course guide information

Personal development skills

  • Communication
  • Specialist skills