Bricklayer receives over $1.3 million in negligence claim

PUBLISHED 25 Nov 2019

Our client worked as a bricklayer with his employer for over 7 years. His employment often involved repetitive heavy lifting and carrying with minimal rotation of duties. As a result of performing these duties over a long period of time, our client developed serious injuries to his neck and lower back.

There is a requirement that Workers Compensation claims be commenced within 3 years from the date of injury.

After consulting Gerard Malouf and Partners in 2016, our client lodged a claim form and subsequently served this form onto the employer. By the time our client lodged his claim form, the 3 year limitation period expired.

Our client provided our office instructions that the reason for such a delay in lodging a Workers Compensation claim was because our client was in fear that it would jeopardise his employment with his employer, and for that reason he did not want to lodge a claim form.

Many injured workers in NSW are unaware that there are some exceptions to the law which requires claims to be lodged within either:

a.) 6 months after the date of injury or

b.) 3 years after the date of injury

At Gerard Malouf and Partners we immediately recognised that our client had a viable claim even though the claim was made well after the 3 year limitation period.

We were able to obtain expert evidence to support that our client’s injuries were work related. In addition to this, we also obtained reports from his treating doctors to support that employment was the main contributing factor to our client’s injuries.

We then filed an Application in the Workers Compensation Commission to have the matters in dispute determined.

The solicitors of Gerard Malouf and Partners with the assistance of a barrister, began extensive negotiations with the insurer. In presenting a challenging case against the insurer, the Arbitrator hearing this matter ruled in favour of our client and awarded him his Workers Compensation rights.

The Arbitrator in this matter agreed that the injuries our client sustained were work related and that a claim was still eligible to be made even though it had been made out of time.

The client received a permanent impairment rating in excess of 15% WPI.

We were then instructed to pursue a negligence claim against the employer for an unsafe system of work.

A claim for Work Injury Damages was then commenced against the employer. Our expert team here at Gerard Malouf & Partners offer a “no win, no fee” arrangement whereby our client does not have to pay any fee until there matter is successfully resolved.

We obtained expert evidence and prepared the claim in negligence against the employer. We subsequently participated in a compulsory Mediation. The matter was not able to resolve at Mediation.

We were then required commence proceedings in the District Court of New South Wales.

We were then required to file Notice of Motion and seek leave from the court to commence this matter outside the 3 year limitation period pursuant to Section 151D.

The Court granted leave for the client to commence his claim outside the limitation period.

The matter was then settled for over $1,300,000 which represented the economic loss suffered by the client due to his injuries.

Have you suffered a workplace injury? Or do you know someone who has?

Contact Gerard Malouf and Partners on 1800-004-878 for a complementary free consultation to assess your legal rights and to provide you with free advice.

Call us now on 1800 004 878 to book a free appointment with one of my compensation experts or email your enquiry.