Mrs S Sues Property Owner & Property Manager for Faulty Wooden Sleeper Injury

Published 20 Mar 2012

Mrs S was injured on 20 April 2008. on that day she was in the backyard feeding her cat. As she was about to walk back into the house a wooden sleeper collapsed landing onto her foot causing her a crush injury to the left ankle. She was taken to Campbelltown hospital where she was treated, admitted and discharged after two weeks.

Mrs S was residing with her husband at a property in Campbelltown which was rented property. The property was rented through a real estate agent who was also the property manager. Three months before this incident her husband reported a problem with the sleepers as they were unstable and had collapsed previously. Nothing was done by either the agent or the landlord to rectify this situation and as a result Mrs S was injured on a separate occasion when the sleeper unexpectedly fell and collapsed onto her leg.

Mrs S sued the agent and the landlord. She sued the landlord because he was made aware of the faulty sleepers but did nothing about it. She also sued the agent for failing to advise the landlord of the incident that occurred three months prior to her accident where the sleeper had fallen over. The landlord argued that had the agent advised him of the faulty and defective sleepers, he would have remedied the problem. It was therefore necessary to sue both defendants who ultimately came to an agreement that they were equally liable for Mrs S’ damages in the sum of 50%.

Mrs S attempted to resolve her matter at an informal settlement conference held at the defendants offices. At that stage, as the apportion of liability had not been agreed between the two defendants, Mrs S was only offered a nominal sum of money to resolve the case. That offer was rejected in accordance with her barrister’s and solicitor’s advice and the matter was proceeded to hearing at the Sydney District Court.

At the Sydney District Court the Defendants’ indicated their willingness to discuss settlement further and after extensive negotiations an offer was conveyed to Mrs S in the sum of $300,000.00 inclusive of her costs and disbursements which she ultimately accepted.