School of Law

Professor DJ McQuoid-Mason2 Telephone +27 31 260 2189
Campus  Howard College
Building & Room Room 1104d, Centre for Socio-Legal Studies, Hut 11
Professor David McQuoid-Mason  


Professor David J McQuoid-Mason, B Comm (Natal) LLB (Natal) LLM (London) PhD (Natal), is a Professor of Law based at the Centre for Socio-Legal Studies at the University of KwaZulu-Natal, Durban; Advocate of the High Court of South Africa; President of the Commonwealth Legal Education Association; Visiting Professor of Law, Strathclyde University, Glasgow, Scotland; Adjunct Professor of Law, Griffiths University, Brisbane, Australia; the founder of the South African Street Law programme; co-founder of the Democracy for All programme; a former President of AULAI; a former Director of the Practical Training Course for Candidate Attorneys in Durban; former Chairperson of the Durban Chapter of Lawyers for Human Rights; m; past President of  the Society Teachers of  Law of Southern African; former member of the Legal Aid Board; member of  the South African Human Rights Commission Section 11 Committee on Access to Justice; member of the Ethics and Human Rights Committee of the Health Professions Council of South Africa; member of the Steering Committee of the Global Alliance for Justice Education.

He is a Fellow of the University of KwaZulu-Natal and was formerly Dean of the Howard College Law School, University of Natal, for 13 years. He began teaching law in 1971.  He taught LLB courses in Delict, Succession, Medical Law and aspects of Human Rights Law, Legal Aid and Street Law, and presently co-teaches in an LLB course in Clinical Law.  He also taught LLM courses in Law and Medical Practice, Consumer Law and aspects of Human Rights Litigation. He still teaches a course on Law and Medical Practice for LLM students a course in Alternate Dispute Resolution at the Practical Training School for Candidate Attorneys.  He specializes in Medical Law, Access to Justice, Legal Aid and Clinical Legal Education. He is Chairperson of the Institute for Professional Legal Training and Street Law South Africa, and Acting Director of the Centre for Socio-Legal Studies at the University of KwaZulu-Natal.

He established the first law clinic at the University of KwaZulu-Natal in 1973, and the first Street Law legal literacy programme in South Africa in 1986. He has conducted clinical legal education training programmes for law teachers and clinicians in South Africa, West Africa and East Africa. He has taught in continuing legal education courses for the legal profession (attorneys, advocates, judges and academics) throughout South Africa, and in Ethiopia, Ghana, Uganda, Nigeria, Zimbabwe, Zambia, Malawi and Namibia.  He has been a member of the International Bar Association’s continuing legal education panel for developing countries and has taught negotiation and mediation skills to law teachers, legal practitioners and paralegals in Southern, Central, East and West Africa.

He has visited more than 129 countries and has facilitated  in numerous training, curriculum and materials development workshops on Street Law, Human Rights and Democracy in a variety of countries, including South Africa, Lesotho, Zimbabwe, Zambia, Namibia, Mozambique, Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, Ghana, Morocco, Egypt, Dubai, Qatar, Nigeria, Ethiopia, Iran, Iraq, Afghanistan, India, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Indonesia, New Zealand, Poland, Hungary, Slovakia, the Czech Republic, Albania, Croatia, Ukraine, Latvia, Armenia, Moldova, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, Mongolia, Turkey, Cambodia, Vietnam, China, Malaysia, the Philippines, Vanuatu, Australia, Fiji, Norway, the United Kingdom, the Falkland Islands, the United States, Spain, Jamaica, Argentina, Peru and Russia. In this regard he has worked with Street Law Inc., the Ford Foundation, the Open Society Institute, NORAD, DANIDA, the Commonwealth Secretariat and other organisations. He acted as an International Scholar in the Academic Fellowship Programme to develop law curricula and teaching methods for Moldova for 2009-2013, and Armenia for 2014-2015.

He has helped to draft legal aid legislation for Afghanistan, Sierra Leone, Uganda and Kenya; has advised on the setting up and improving of legal aid schemes in Lithuania, Kyrghyzstan, Afghanistan, Mongolia, Moldova, Indonesia, Sierra Leone, Uganda, Kenya, Somaliland (Somalia), Myanmar (Burma) and Nigeria; trained paralegals in South Africa, Mongolia and Malawi; helped to develop paralegal advice offices and materials for Sierra Leone, Malawi, Mongolia, Moldova, Cambodia and Indonesia; provided professional legal training in Namibia, Zambia, Malawi and Ghana and  clinical legal education training for the United Kingdom, Australia, Nigeria, Uganda, Cambodia, Vietnam, Laos, the Philippines, Indonesia, Iran, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Jordan, Pakistan and Afghanistan; and conducted medico-legal workshops for Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Zimbabwe, and for Iraqi doctors in Kuwait. He has hosted legal aid, clinical legal education and paralegal Study Visits to South Africa from Lithuania, Kyrghyzstan, Afghanistan, Iran, Turkey, Mongolia, Moldova, Indonesia, Cambodia, Myanmar, Uganda, Kenya, Sierra Leone, Nigeria and Somalia (Somaliland).

More recently he was a member of the team of International Legal Aid Experts for the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) that drafted the Principles and Guidelines on Access to Legal Aid in Criminal Justice Systems (2013), the Early access to legal aid in criminal justice processes:a handbook for policy makers and practitioners (2014) that goes with it, and the United Nations Model Law on Legal Aid in Criminal Proceedings which he initiated.

Professor McQuoid-Mason runs frequent workshops on human rights and democracy for school teachers, community leaders, youth leaders, women’s groups, trade unions, university students and school children.  He serves on the boards of several human rights and cultural bodies. On 10 December 2004 he was awarded a Special Mention by UNESCO for his work in human rights education; in October 2008 a DCL (honoris causa) by the University of Windsor, Ontario, Canada for his access to justice work around the world; and in April 2009 the Advocate of the Year award by Street Law Incorporated for his work in establishing Street Law legal literacy programmes around the world. On 10 July 2013 he was awarded a DCL (honoris causa) by the University of Northumbria for his promotion of clinical legal education, human rights and Street law nationally and internationally.

 Acting Director, Centre for Socio-Legal Studies and Senior Research Associate


BComm LLB (Natal); LLM (London); PhD (Natal); DCL (HC) (Windsor, Canada); DCL (HC) (Northumbria).

Advocate of the High Court of South Africa.

Medical Law; Access to Justice; Legal Aid; Clinical Legal Education.

David McQuoid-Mason ‘When are doctors legally obliged to stop and render assistance to injured persons at road accidents?’ (2016) 106(6) SAMJ 575-577.

  1. David McQuoid-Mason ‘May doctors refuse to treat rape survivors in order to avoid having to give evidence in court?’ (2016) 9 SAJBL 4-6.
  2. David McQuoid-Mason ‘Teaching social justice to law students through clinical legal education and community service – the South African experience with particular reference to the University of KwaZulu-Natal in Mutaz Qafisheh and Stephen A Rosenbaum (eds) Global Legal Education Approaches: Special Reference to the Middle East (2016) 333-343 (Cambridge Scholars Publishing).
  3. David McQuoid-Mason ‘Is it ever justified for doctors to sue their patients whose allegations against them have been dismissed by the courts or the HPCSA?’ (2015) 105 (12) SAMJ 1010-1011.
  4. David McQuoid-Mason ‘Doctor-assisted suicide: Is it legally and ethically justifiable?  (2015) 8 (2) SAJBL 34-40.

Professor McQuoid-Mason has published more than 150 articles in law and medical journals.  He is sole author of The Law of Privacy in South Africa (1978) and An Outline of Legal Aid in South Africa (1982); and has contributed more than 60 chapters to books and co-authored 26 books and manuals:  Law of Obligations (1978);  Human Rights for All (1991) and Democracy for All(1994); Consumer Law in South Africa (1997); Human Rights for Correctional Services (1998); The Guide to Forensic Medicine and Medical Law (1999); Basic Trial Advocacy Skills (2000); Handbook of Forensic Medicine and Medical Law in Kenya (2001); Introduction to Medico-Legal Practice (2001); Crimes against Women and Children: A Medico-Legal Guide (2002); Street Law South Africa: Learner’s Manual  2 ed (2004); Street Law South Africa; Instructor’s Manual 2 ed (2005); Dealing with HIV Infection: Antiretroviral Post-Exposure Prophylaxis (2005);  Forensic Medicine, Medical Law and Ethics in East Africa (2005); HIV/AIDS the Law and Human Rights (2006); an A-Z of Nursing Law (2009); Student Book on Criminal Law (2009); Bioethics, Human Rights and Health Law: Principles and Practice (2011); an A-Z of Nursing Law 2 ed (2011); A-Z of Medical Law (2011);  Crimes against Women and Children: A Medico-Legal Guide (2012);  Best Practices Manual on Democracy Education (2013); Street Law South Africa: Learner’s Manual  3 ed (2015); Street Law South Africa; Instructor’s Manual 3 ed (2015).


  1. David McQuoid-Mason ‘Legal Ethics and Access to Justice’, Faculty of Law, University of the West Indies Second Annual Symposium on Law, Governance and Society, Montego Bay, Jamaica, 3-5 June 2016.
  2. David McQuoid-Mason ‘Street Law in South Africa and Beyond’, Street Law Caribbean Institution Launch, University of the West Indies, Kingston, Jamaica, 6 June 2016.
  3.  David McQuoid-Mason ‘Indicators and Impact Measuring Tools for Human Rights and Democracy Education Activities at High Schools and the General Public – An Early but Relevant South African Survey’, Regional Ed O’Brien Memorial Conference, Kingston, Jamaica, 7 June 2016.
  4. Mohammed Ameermia and David McQuoid-Mason ‘Advancing the Economic Rights Agenda – Emerging Trends and Lessons from South Africa, Street Law Caribbean and the General Legal Council’s Continuing Legal Professional Development Committee’s Tribute to Judge Roy Anderson, Kingston, Jamaica, 8 June 2016.
  5. David McQuoid-Mason ‘Ethics in Clinical Practice’, Health Ethics Seminar Program on Upholding Healthcare Ethics in Modern Society’, Gaberone, Botswana, 21 June 2016.

[Professor McQuoid-Mason has delivered over 150 papers at national and over 200 at international conferences]


Professor McQuoid-Mason is co-editor of the Journal for Juridical Science and the South African Journal of Bioethics and Law, and serves on the Editorial Boards of the Tydskrif vir Hedendaagse Romeins-Hollandse Reg (RSA); the International Journal of Legal Practice (UK), the International Journal of Clinical Legal Education, (UK) the Journal of Commonwealth Law and Legal Education (UK), Legal Ethics (SA); the African Journal of Clinical Legal Education and Access to Justice (Nigeria); and the NUSRL Journal of Law and Policy (India).