Nursing home pays $135,000 to a 91 year old lady who was knocked down by a swinging door

Published 24 Oct 2017

Our client was a 91 year old woman who was injured at her nursing home residence on 14 January 2016. At the time, she was walking past a swinging door in the vicinity of a common room, when a staff-member opened the door, hitting the plaintiff and knocking her to the floor.

Our Client sustained a torn rotator cuff to her right shoulder as a result of the incident; the rotator cuff injury was inoperable. 

Her injuries caused serious pain, discomfort, stiffness and restriction of movement and affected her ability to perform physical tasks and activities of daily living. She was even forced to give up her driver licence. As well our client suffered from complicating comorbidities such as Parkinson’s disease and peripheral neuropathy.  

Due to her injury and disabilities she was unable to attend to the simplest of tasks and required personal attendant care to assist with activities of daily living.

We had our client assessed by an expert Orthopaedic Surgeon and an Occupational Therapist who detailed the level of impairment and ongoing disabilities that affected our client. The reports prepared by our experts allowed us to quantify the damage suffered by our client and helped to clarify the monetary compensation that our client might be awarded by a Court.

We commenced proceedings in the District Court of NSW against the nursing home. We alleged that the nursing home owed a duty to its residents to ensure safe passage down the corridor by ensuring the corridor was safe and free from hazards that may cause someone to be knocked to the ground. By failing to ensure that the swinging doors was safely opened the nursing home breached its duty of care to our client, and this resulted in her fall.

The nursing home agreed and admitted they were at fault and obtained their own expert evidence and agreed to engage in settlement negotiations.

Despite our best attempts, the matter did not settle at the Mediation. The nursing home just simply did not offer enough money. We advised our client that the money they were offering was too low and to not be afraid to run the matter to Hearing in order to receive maximum compensation.

At the morning of the first day of Hearing, the nursing home finally agreed to pay what the claim was worth and the parties were able to settle the matter. This was a great result for our client in circumstances where she listened to our advice to stay strong and not be intimidated by the nursing home because the nursing home were trying to bully her into accepting a cheap settlement by pressuring her to Hearing.

In the end the client was happy she held out to receive more compensation for the damage she had suffered.

At Gerard Malouf and Partners we are experts in public liability claims. If you have been injured at a public place contact us today for a free consultation with one of our expert lawyers. We will be happy to discuss how can assist you on a No Win No Fee basis to obtain the compensation that you are entitled to.