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Public Liability Lawyers

If you sustain an injury because of another person’s negligence (other than your employer), you may be entitled to claim compensation for your injuries in accordance with the Civil Liability Act 2002 (CLA).

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5-Star Client Rating

You’ll receive outstanding service. We maintain a 5-star client rating.

Free Case Assessments

We provide confidential, free case assessments.

Industry Experts

We’re industry experts with over 20 years of experience.

No Win No Fee

You won’t be required to pay any fees until we win your case.

We specialise in Public Liability Compensation Claims

Types of Public Liability Claims

Public liability refers to any injury sustained in a public place. This includes;

  • Injuries at schools
  • Injuries in parks or other public places (slips, trips and falls)
  • Injuries on council owned land (fall on footpath or council caused danger)
  • Injuries on rented premises (landlord/tenant)
  • Injuries caused by animals (like a dog attack)
  • Recreational and sporting injuries
  • Boating accidents
  • Food poisoning

Negligence in a Public Liability Claim

To make a liability claim you will need to establish that the person you believe to be in the wrong was negligent. You will need to prove:

  • Whether the defendant owes you a duty of care, and
  • Whether they have breached that duty of care

Most of the time a duty of care is easily established. For example, if you are at a supermarket and you injure yourself, the owner of that supermarket owes you a duty of care because you are on their premises.

It is more difficult however to establish that the duty of care was breached. The test is whether it was reasonably foreseeable that someone could sustain an injury and whether the defendant did what was reasonably necessary to prevent such an injury. If the injury was foreseeable and the defendant failed to do what was reasonably necessary to prevent the injury, then breach of duty would be satisfied.

What compensation can be claimed?

If negligence is established, you will be entitled to compensation for the following types of damages:

  1. Pain and suffering and loss of enjoyment of life, a lump sum payment for the injury sustained and the effects on you;
  2. Out of pocket expenses: includes past and future medical expenses, as well as any other injury related expenses incurred due to the injury
  3. Loss of income: past and future loss of income
  4. Care and assistance: domestic assistance from family, friend, or commercial care

The public liability compensation is payed as a once off lump sum amount at the conclusion of the claim by way of agreement or determination by a Court.

You can only claim compensation for your injuries once, it is important to maximise your entitlement to compensation as once the claim is finished you will be responsible for all future medical treatment and any ongoing loss of income.

Each claim is different and success depends on the circumstances of how the injury happened.

It is important to speak to an Accredited Specialist in Personal Injury Law as soon as possible after an injury to see if you may have a right to make a public liability claim.

Claims Case Studies

Would you like assistance with your claim?

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Alternatively, we are available to talk through phone and email. Please contact our experienced workers compensation lawyers to find out how we can help.

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1/ What is negligence?

The law of negligence in NSW is now modified by the Civil Liability Act 2002 (NSW).

An essential element of negligence is the existence of a duty of care. The courts over the years have accepted categories of duty of care, or that a special relationship exists between parties, that a person must take reasonable care to avoid acts or emissions which are likely to injury another in such a relationship.

Examples would be an employee and an employer, an occupier and an entrant upon premises, a doctor and patient, a school and its students. These are the most common categories.

In most cases there is little issue that a duty of care exists as most injuries would fall under an accepted category where a duty exists.

The Civil Liability Act then sets out three (3) conditions that must exist before negligence arises.

A person is not negligent in failing to take precautions against a risk of injury unless:

  • It was a risk of which the person knew or ought to have known
  • The risk was not insignificant
  • A reasonable person in the circumstances would have taken those precautions

When considering these matters the court must take into account the following:

  • The probability of the harm occurring if care were not taken
  • The likely seriousness of the harm
  • The burden of taking precautions to avoid the risk of harm
  • The benefit to society of the activity that creates the risk of harm

Each case is determined on its own facts and circumstances applying the principles as we have outlined above.

The law of negligence is complex and you will need the assistance of a Lawyer who is an expert in personal injury law to advise you whether or not you have a claim for compensation under the Civil Liability Act.

2/ How is compensation paid under a negligence claim?

To receive compensation you must notify the person you believe has been negligent and is responsible for the injury you have sustained and advise them that you wish to make a claim for compensation.

In the vast majority of claims the injury will be covered by insurance and you will receive a response from an insurance company to your claim.

You can then negotiate, with the assistance of a Lawyer, the resolution of your claim directly with the insurance company or if you are unable to reach an agreement you must commence a claim for compensation in an appropriate court of NSW.

Compensation under a claim for negligence is called Damages.

Damages are broadly defined to include any form of monetary compensation.

Damages usually include monetary compensation in the form of:-

  • Non economic loss which means a lump sum amount for pain and suffering and loss of enjoyment and expectation of life.
  • Economic loss which is compensation awarded for loss of income such as wages and payment of medical expenses.

Damages are payable at the conclusion of a negligence claim as a lump sum amount for both economic and non economic loss sustained as a result of the injury.

3/ What type of compensation is payable in a negligence claim?

Compensation in a negligence claim is known as Damages.Damages are broadly defined to include any form of monetary compensation.

There are 2 broad types of compensation payable:

  • Non economic loss
  • Economic loss

Non economic loss

Non economic loss includes compensation for pain and suffering, discomfort, inconvenience, loss of pleasure derived from work, hobbies and sport, marriage and child bearing, loss of independent, curtailment of life, loss of expectation of life and disfigurement.

You are entitled to receive a lump sum amount of compensation for non economic loss as determined by a table under the Civil Liability Act. Your injuries are compared to that of a most extreme case. You are awarded an amount of money based on what percentage your injury is, compared to a most extreme case. The maximum amount payable under the Civil Liability Act is $551,100.00 for 100% of a most extreme case.

Economic loss

Economic loss covers the loss of the following:

  • Past and future loss of income
  • Past and future payment of medical expenses
  • Past and future loss for the capacity to care for oneself and dependants
  • Loss of superannuation entitlements

Payment of compensation or damages is made as a once off lump sum amount at the conclusion of a claim. The nature and extent of your injuries and how they affect you on a day to day basis will determine the amount of compensation you are entitled to receive.

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