Sydney Woman Awarded $140,000.00 after Falling at Wedding Reception

Published 30 Aug 2018

Our client was attending her son’s wedding at a reception venue in Bankstown when she attempted to walk down the short flight of stairs to greet guests and family. The stairs in question were only two steps high but the room was poorly lit and there were no warning signs to indicate that the steps were there. In addition, the stairs did not have a handrail, were of an irregular height and did not have yellow safety strips. All these factors combined created a dangerous tripping hazard for patrons and as a result of the venue’s negligence and breach of duty of care, our client lost her balance and fell. Unfortunately, she sustained multiple injuries to her back and a broken arm.  What was meant to be a special night filled with celebration quickly turned into a night spent at the emergency department.

After hearing our client’s story, the experienced solicitors at Gerard Malouf and Partners immediately knew she was entitled to compensation and were eager to help. There was no doubt that the owners had been negligent and had a duty of care to avoid foreseeable risk of injury to our client. However, they claimed our client was lying and that there was warning strips on the steps at the time of the accident.  The team at Gerard Malouf and Partners did not doubt our client’s story and worked hard to obtain evidence which supported her case by gathering multiple witness statements from the guests at the wedding as well as photos of the stairs taken around the time of the accident.

At Gerard Malouf and Partners, we have a strong relationship with experts which we work closely with to ensure our cases are successful. We quickly engaged one of our experts to assess the stairs and provide a report we could use as evidence. Upon his inspection of the stairs, our expert’s report outlined the negligence of the owners of the venue detailing how they did not comply with Australian Safety Standards and Regulations. Our team built a strong case that showed our client and other patrons were put at risk due to the unsafe nature and tripping hazard of the stairs.

In the beginning, the owners of the venue only offered our client $40,000.00 to settle the claim even though she was faced with a total cost of $60,000.00 for future surgery to her back and medical bills. However, due to the tireless work of Gerard Malouf and Partners and the strong evidential case our team were able to build against the owners of the venue, the matter was able to be settled through negotiations without the stress and added costs of proceeding to court. The court process is also often time consuming and we try hard to assist our clients in obtaining their compensation settlement faster. In just over a year of the client’s injury, the lawyers at Gerard Malouf and Partners, alongside our team of specialist Barristers and Experts, were able to vigorously negotiate a fantastic settlement of $140,000.00.