How can I spot legal issues in the news? Watch

Potentiallawgirl
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To prepare for my cambridge interview ive read that I should think about the legal issues surrounding current news stories. How do I go about doing this? What sort of questions should be running through my mind when reading an article? Thanks for any help.
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999tigger
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(Original post by Potentiallawgirl)
To prepare for my cambridge interview ive read that I should think about the legal issues surrounding current news stories. How do I go about doing this? What sort of questions should be running through my mind when reading an article? Thanks for any help.
Keep a list of what you think topical issues are where the law is or should be involved. That means listening to the radio or looking at news websites or reading a broadsheet.

What is the debate about?
How is the law involved?
Should the law be involved?
How effective is it?
Whats your opinion?
What are the alternatives plus pros and cons.

I would imagine being about to talk about a number is subjects would be better .
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LeapingLucy
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Try the Law In Action podcast
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LeapingLucy
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It’s on BBC Radio iplayer
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JohanGRK
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(Original post by Potentiallawgirl)
To prepare for my cambridge interview ive read that I should think about the legal issues surrounding current news stories. How do I go about doing this? What sort of questions should be running through my mind when reading an article? Thanks for any help.
In reality, the interviewers (being miserable statists) will ask you about the pros/cons of a particular course of action (e.g. should we regulate this? should we criminalise that? should we amend this? should we abolish that?)

Therefore, you should be doing two things:
1. Think about how the law could meddle with an area where the law either currently non-existent or insufficient
2. Think about the pros and cons of the law doing intervening or changing in some way

The sort of news articles you will read aren't that important - developing a good thought process is - but I'd still advise you to look at something that has political/philosophical implications, as these are the sort of things academics think about. Don't focus on technical areas like environmental regulation or something. They don't expect too much 'hard knowledge' at interview, particularly if that 'hard knowledge' is in an area unrelated to a law degree.

Edit: If you're struggling with a particular news item, post it here and the lovely gentlemen and ladies of TSR will help
Last edited by JohanGRK; 3 months ago
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Potentiallawgirl
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(Original post by JohanGRK)
In reality, the interviewers (being miserable statists) will ask you about the pros/cons of a particular course of action (e.g. should we regulate this? should we criminalise that? should we amend this? should we abolish that?)

Therefore, you should be doing two things:
1. Think about how the law could meddle with an area where the law either currently non-existent or insufficient
2. Think about the pros and cons of the law doing intervening or changing in some way

The sort of news articles you will read aren't that important - developing a good thought process is - but I'd still advise you to look at something that has political/philosophical implications, as these are the sort of things academics think about. Don't focus on technical areas like environmental regulation or something. They don't expect too much 'hard knowledge' at interview, particularly if that 'hard knowledge' is in an area unrelated to a law degree.

Edit: If you're struggling with a particular news item, post it here and the lovely gentlemen and ladies of TSR will help
Thanks for the help! Can you just show me through this example how you would go about doing this with the following article just as an example for me? Thank you! https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/education-46263401
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hp4300
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(Original post by Potentiallawgirl)
Thanks for the help! Can you just show me through this example how you would go about doing this with the following article just as an example for me? Thank you! https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/education-46263401
Hi,

I'm only in year 12 but I'm thinking of applying for law next year, so when I saw this post I thought I'd give it a go (I don't know how correct it is)

The main question I thought of was whether or not the school/council should be liable for the assault.

It's unclear in the article if there were multiple assaults or just one, I'm going to assume it was only a one time occurrence

For the statement
- The article mentions warning signs (i.e. the underwear incident being witnessed by a member of staff). Such events could implicate the school, especially the particular staff member. By failing to not only address the issue straight away but also not alerting higher authorities (head teacher/ social workers or even law enforcement) the school are failing to provide the care which they have promised (perhaps negligence - I'm not sure on that though). You could argue that the council are liable as they manage the school which in turn failed to pick up on clear warning signs and take action, again they failed to complete their main duty - keeping children safe.

Against the statement
- The staff/school are handling young primary school children, perhaps there was only one warning sign (mentioned above) and it was unclear so they couldn't take further action.
- The boys are liable, whilst the school didn't act swiftly the school/council didn't themselves commit assault. The young boys should be liable as they committed assault and therefore should be punished not the school.

Conclusion
- The school should take part of the responsibility for this act, however they cannot be fully responsible as they themselves didn't commit assault. By failing to address the issue the matter definitely worsened for the young girl, but by then the assault had already occurred so the boys are liable also.

This could all be utter nonsense but I hope in some way it helped, maybe have a go with another question e.g. should the boys be punished/ what punishment should they receive?
Last edited by hp4300; 3 months ago
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Notoriety
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(Original post by Potentiallawgirl)
Thanks for the help! Can you just show me through this example how you would go about doing this with the following article just as an example for me? Thank you! https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/education-46263401
School has duty of care to pupil. Were negligent in their care. School agreed to compensate the pupil for her losses -- cost of counselling, ongoing emotional distress. Imo, this is a boring angle (unless the story grabs you); the law behind it is probably complicated, as the article says, it's the first of its kind and there will be some technical reason for that and we don't have the HC decision accepting the settlement.

The more common and accessible controversy is of criminal responsibility occurring in English law from 10. The boys who sexually assaulted her, as it's a primary school and they're not being prosecuted, are presumably under 10. It raises the question of whether it is correct that children under 10 should not be criminally liable -- can they know what they're doing, know it is wrong? A lot of people referred to it in the Jamie Bulger case: some saying they just needed to be social worked back to normalcy and others saying the 2 kids who did it should have been hanged. Well, we know one of them is in prison for possessing child pornography and other things; and the other one we believe is leading a normal and productive life. Seems both sides have a point -- maybe we should use the parole method to see how they develop, leaving open the possibility for perpetual imprisonment but rewarding rehabilitation with freedom and opportunity.

Compare with the Norwegian model: https://www.theguardian.com/theguard...-child-killers.
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