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Injured whilst in a rental property

Updated on August 11, 2023 | Published on November 08, 2021

By Matthew Garling

If you sustain serious and permanent injuries at a rental property, you may be able to make a public liability claim under the NSW Civil Liability Act.  You need to have an injury which is serious, permanent and effects the ability for you to live your normal life.

Find out if you have a claim in just 2-minutes

If you are one of the many thousands of people in NSW who rent a home, you have a right for that home to be safe, secure, and maintained for the duration of the rental agreement.

When someone is injured on a rental property, it may be possible to make a public liability claim against the landlord.

Tenants’ Rights and Responsibilities

If you sustain serious and permanent injuries at a rental property, you may be able to make a public liability claim under the NSW Civil Liability Act.  You need to have an injury which is serious, permanent and effects the ability for you to live your normal life.

Depending on the facts of your case and what caused your injuries, you may have a claim against any or all the following: –

1.     Your landlord.

2.     An owner’s corporation

3.     A property manager or agent

4.     Tradespeople.

If you have sustained an injury, you should immediately notify your property manager or agent of the incident, how it occurred and the injuries you have sustained.  You should also immediately seek medical treatment for your injuries.

It is also important that as a tenant, if there are dangerous aspects at the premises, that these are brought to the attention of the property manager and landlord as soon as possible, in writing.

Your Landlords Rights and Responsibilities

There is no general duty on a landlord to inspect the property to find hidden dangers or defects that have not previously been brought to their attention or are not clearly visible to the homeowner and/or landlord.

For example, if a defect in a balcony rail which is not visible to the homeowner or a landlord on a general inspection, then collapses and causes injury, it would not give rise to a claim against the landlord.  The law does not require the landlord to conduct regular safety inspections to pick up hidden dangers.

A landlord owes a duty to take reasonable care for the safety of tenants and visitors, but that duty is only that of a reasonable person in the position of the landlord.

At the beginning of a lease, once you have inspected the property, if you find any aspects of the property are dangerous, you should alert the landlord and managing agent and request the necessary repairs to make it safe. This should be made in writing.

You should keep note of all correspondence and communications that you have had with the property manager or landlord in relation to any complaints about any dangerous or safety issues with the property.

The law requires that landlords must take reasonable steps to ensure the safety of its property and its tenants but only in circumstances where: –

1.     The property is in some way defective, and this is obviously dangerous.

2.     The landlord (or their representative) knew or should have known about the defect; and

3.     No timely or reasonable action was taken by the landlord or their representative to repair the defect and prevent the risk of injury.

To be successful in a claim therefore, the landlord must know of the dangerous condition of the property, or they should have known of the defect because it was so obvious.

Types of Cases

There are many ways in which a property may be unsafe, such as: –

1.     Rotten or broken floorboards

2.     Problems with stairs and steps

3.     Failure to provide proper handrails

4.     Dangerous paths and paving

5.     Unstable balconies and balustrades

6.     Inadequate lighting on the property

How to make a claim

If you have sustained an injury whilst at a rental property, you should take the following steps before contacting a lawyer: –

1.     Immediately alert the landlord and property agent of the incident and the injuries you sustained.

2.     Seek medical treatment straight away and explain how your injuries occurred.

3.     Keep all emails or letters sent to the landlord or property agent in relation to the defect in the property.

4.     Keep records and receipts of all your medical and related expenses incurred.

5.     Take photographs of the defect which caused your injury.

6.     Do not try and fix the property without notifying the landlord and obtaining approval.

If your injuries are serious and permanent, you should contact Garling & Co Lawyers to discuss the possibility of making a public liability claim.

Generally, you have three years from the date in which you knew or ought to have known you had a right to make a claim against the landlord.  You should therefore always contact a Lawyer and obtain advice well within three years from the date of your injury.

Garling & Co Lawyers

Matthew Garling

Matthew Garling is an Accredited Specialist in Personal Injury Law approved by New South Wales Law Society. He is admitted to practice in the Supreme Court of NSW and the High Court of Australia. Matthew is also a member of...
Kimberly B.
23:14 14 Feb 24
Mathew is very knowledgable and has been of great assistance to me. All the staff are friendly and helpful. I'm so happy I found this firm.Thank you Mathew and team for your great work in my case.... I am 100% happy with what you achieved for me.read more
Julie M.
10:16 16 Jan 24
My last stage of Workers compensation claim was managed by Emma Perkins, Natasha Stojanovic, Rebecca Dunshea and Kelli Robinson at Garling and Co. Lawyers who went the extra mile with their service... from the beginning to the end of 3 years of my case. I have become very anxious with almost everything after a workplace injury and a lot of times I probably ask more questions than I need to, but Emma Perkins always finds clear answers to my questions in a short time and explains to me patiently even using her mealtime or between her meeting and make me feel that I have been very well take care and supported. I am so grateful and extremely satisfied. The excellent service, attitude, and culture of Metthew Garling and his team are second to none with a very high success rate. If you going to battle with your workplace injury for a short or long period, you are better off with Garling and Co. lawyers who are able back you up every step of the way. I strongly recommend it to anybody who needs their service like me. Julieread more
patrick P.
01:46 19 Dec 23
I like to say that I had a very wonderful experience,And the support, and also understanding with all my requests,I could not ask for a better team!Thank you Emma and also her assistant Rebecca... thank youread more
Kazi H.
13:38 13 Dec 23
Work cover fund is GOVT’S money but insurer think that it is from their 14th generation. So only they can have it. Not only that, people from the work, IME doctor from insurer, back to work... coordinator from work, Rehab provider from any side push the worker as hard as possible that the worker (doesn’t matter how the workers mental or psychical condition) either go back to his pre injury duty or leave the job.More over on that very bumpy any difficult journey some of them only treat the worker as a MONEY MAKING MECHINE .in some point worker feels like, no rooms to breath. On that moment need someone to support legally, someone to care, someone to relive.On my case I believe that, somehow, I manage to make my God happy. That’s why God sends me to Matthew Gerling and his team Allison, Rebecca and Nathan, and all of GARLING & co Lawyers.I am not good enough in English, can’t express my gratitude.Matthew, Allison, Rebecca and Nathan, please accept my appreciation and pass it to others.read more
Carol L.
01:32 29 Nov 23
Professional, understanding and friendly
Sean G.
23:21 14 Nov 23
Matthew Garling and everyone I spoke to at Garling and Co were kind, caring and compassionate. They were sensitive to my psychological condition and were patient in explaining everything to me, so... that I clearly understood the legal process. I am exceptionally grateful for the settlement outcome that Garling and Co obtained for me. Many thanks.read more
waqas A.
08:33 13 Nov 23
Great Experience with Garling & Co. Matthew explained everything in detail during the first appointment. Allison, Nathan, Rebecca and the staff have been extremely helpful. Thank You to the team and... lawyers at Garling & Co. for making the long process easy for me and getting an excellent outcome for my compensation claim.I would highly recommend Garling & Co. Lawyersread more
Saskia L.
21:42 08 Nov 23
The world of workers compensation is long, hard and confusing, but Emma and Rebecca at Garling & Co always treated my case with kindness, respect and understanding. No question was ever silly and... they always had time to make sure I knew what would happen next and how we could best prepare. I am so thankful for their expertise and could not have chosen anyone better to represent me.read more
Antonio P.
08:46 06 Nov 23
Thank you Matthew and his team for taking care of my case couldn’t ask for a better results and couldn’t have better team to do that thank you
Julie M.
00:40 06 Nov 23
Garlic & Co Lawyers have been wonderful, supporting me through some difficult times. With their assistance, positive outcomes were achieved. Many thanks to the Team.Julie
READ ALL TESTIMONIALS

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Kimberly B.
23:14 14 Feb 24
Mathew is very knowledgable and has been of great assistance to me. All the staff are friendly and helpful. I'm so happy I found this firm.Thank you Mathew and team for your great work in my case.... I am 100% happy with what you achieved for me.read more
Julie M.
10:16 16 Jan 24
My last stage of Workers compensation claim was managed by Emma Perkins, Natasha Stojanovic, Rebecca Dunshea and Kelli Robinson at Garling and Co. Lawyers who went the extra mile with their service... from the beginning to the end of 3 years of my case. I have become very anxious with almost everything after a workplace injury and a lot of times I probably ask more questions than I need to, but Emma Perkins always finds clear answers to my questions in a short time and explains to me patiently even using her mealtime or between her meeting and make me feel that I have been very well take care and supported. I am so grateful and extremely satisfied. The excellent service, attitude, and culture of Metthew Garling and his team are second to none with a very high success rate. If you going to battle with your workplace injury for a short or long period, you are better off with Garling and Co. lawyers who are able back you up every step of the way. I strongly recommend it to anybody who needs their service like me. Julieread more
patrick P.
01:46 19 Dec 23
I like to say that I had a very wonderful experience,And the support, and also understanding with all my requests,I could not ask for a better team!Thank you Emma and also her assistant Rebecca... thank youread more
Kazi H.
13:38 13 Dec 23
Work cover fund is GOVT’S money but insurer think that it is from their 14th generation. So only they can have it. Not only that, people from the work, IME doctor from insurer, back to work... coordinator from work, Rehab provider from any side push the worker as hard as possible that the worker (doesn’t matter how the workers mental or psychical condition) either go back to his pre injury duty or leave the job.More over on that very bumpy any difficult journey some of them only treat the worker as a MONEY MAKING MECHINE .in some point worker feels like, no rooms to breath. On that moment need someone to support legally, someone to care, someone to relive.On my case I believe that, somehow, I manage to make my God happy. That’s why God sends me to Matthew Gerling and his team Allison, Rebecca and Nathan, and all of GARLING & co Lawyers.I am not good enough in English, can’t express my gratitude.Matthew, Allison, Rebecca and Nathan, please accept my appreciation and pass it to others.read more
Carol L.
01:32 29 Nov 23
Professional, understanding and friendly
Sean G.
23:21 14 Nov 23
Matthew Garling and everyone I spoke to at Garling and Co were kind, caring and compassionate. They were sensitive to my psychological condition and were patient in explaining everything to me, so... that I clearly understood the legal process. I am exceptionally grateful for the settlement outcome that Garling and Co obtained for me. Many thanks.read more
waqas A.
08:33 13 Nov 23
Great Experience with Garling & Co. Matthew explained everything in detail during the first appointment. Allison, Nathan, Rebecca and the staff have been extremely helpful. Thank You to the team and... lawyers at Garling & Co. for making the long process easy for me and getting an excellent outcome for my compensation claim.I would highly recommend Garling & Co. Lawyersread more
Saskia L.
21:42 08 Nov 23
The world of workers compensation is long, hard and confusing, but Emma and Rebecca at Garling & Co always treated my case with kindness, respect and understanding. No question was ever silly and... they always had time to make sure I knew what would happen next and how we could best prepare. I am so thankful for their expertise and could not have chosen anyone better to represent me.read more
Antonio P.
08:46 06 Nov 23
Thank you Matthew and his team for taking care of my case couldn’t ask for a better results and couldn’t have better team to do that thank you
Julie M.
00:40 06 Nov 23
Garlic & Co Lawyers have been wonderful, supporting me through some difficult times. With their assistance, positive outcomes were achieved. Many thanks to the Team.Julie
University of Technology, Sydney
Member of Law Society of New South Wales
Law Society of NSW Specialist Accreditation
University of Sydney
Legal Profession Admission Board of New South Wales
The law society of nsw professional standards scheme logo.
University of Technology, Sydney
Member of Law Society of New South Wales
Law Society of NSW Specialist Accreditation
University of Sydney
Legal Profession Admission Board of New South Wales
The law society of nsw professional standards scheme logo.
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