Dr Leo Boonzaier


Leo Boonzaier is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Private Law at the University of Cape Town. He studied social science and law at UCT and then did his graduate work at Oxford. In 2012 he was a research assistant to Prof Reinhard Zimmermann at the Max Planck Institute for Comparative and International Private Law in Hamburg and in 2013–14 he clerked for Justice Edwin Cameron at the Constitutional Court of South Africa. He has taught tort, contract, land, and jurisprudence for various Oxford colleges as well as at University College London.  He has a Y1 rating from the National Research Foundation.

Research Interests

The law of obligations, especially delict; private law theory; human rights and private law; general jurisprudence.


LLB:  Delict; Jurisprudence.

LLM:  Human Rights and Private Law.


  • 'Delictual liability and the stowaway plaintiff' (with Caitlin Le Roith) (2024) Tydskrif vir die Suid-Afikaanse Reg (forthcoming).
  • 'The role of precedent in in South Africa' in C Ramberg (ed), The Role of Legal Precedents in Private Law (Intersentia 2024) 189-227.
  • 'Private Law and the Constitution' in J Brickhill et al (eds), South African Constitutional Law first reissue (Juta & Co Ltd 2024) ch9.
  • ‘Common-law avoidance’ (2024) 141 South African Law Journal 213-256 (open access link).
  • ‘Is a tort a failure to do what one ought?’ in F Bettini et al (eds), New Directions in Private Law Theory (UCL Press 2023) 165–196.
  • ‘Delictual liability for injuries suffered at childcare centres’ (2022) 38 South African Journal on Human Rights 309–330 (doi).
  • Donoghue v Stevenson in South Africa’ in The Immortal Snail: 90th Anniversary Conference Papers (CLE Society of British Columbia 2023) ch 9 (preprint) (open access pdf).
  • ‘Gardner on duties in tort’ in H Psarras and S Steel (eds), Private Law and Practical Reason (Oxford University Press 2023) 19–42.
  • ‘The Constitutional Court’s efficiency: Statistics from the Mogoeng era, 2010–2021’ (with Nurina Ally) (2022) 12 Constitutional Court Review 317–342 (open access link).
  • ‘Aquilian liability of public authorities in 19th-century South Africa’ in N Jansen and S Meier (eds), Iurium Itinera: Historical Comparative Law and Comparative Legal History (Mohr Siebeck 2022) 677–698.
  • ‘Contractual fairness at the crossroads’ (2021) 11 Constitutional Court Review 229–274 (open access link).
  • ‘Privacy overlooked?’ (2021) 37 Professional Negligence 95–101 (pdf).
  • 'Venturing beyond formalism: The Constitutional Court of South Africa’s equality jurisprudence' (with Edwin Cameron) (2020) 84 Rabels Zeitschrift für ausländisches und internationales Privatrecht 786–840 (DOI) (pdf).
  • 'Rereading Botha v Rich' (2020) 137 South African Law Journal 1–12.
  • 'A decision to undo' (2018) 135 South African Law Journal 642–677.
  • 'Good reviews, bad actors: The Constitutional Court's procedural drama' (2015) 7 Constitutional Court Review 1–26 (open access link).
  • 'The Constitutional Court in Harms' way' (with Michael Mbikiwa) (2015) 132 South African Law Journal 769–779.
  • 'State liability in South Africa: A more direct approach' (2013) 130 South African Law Journal 330–368.