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Man Gets $80K in Compensation after a Fall Caused by a Faulty Stair Railing

Case Overview
  • A man was standing outside a doctor’s office leaning up against a stairway handrail.
  • The stairway handrail suddenly gave way and he fell backward to the ground.
  • Gerard Malouf and Partners were successful in negotiating a settlement of $80,000.

A man was standing outside a doctor’s office leaning up against a stairway handrail when it suddenly gave way and the client fell backward to the ground. The man contacted Gerard Malouf and Partners to find out whether he had any rights to bring a claim for compensation. He was advised at the time of his call that he could bring a claim and a consultation was arranged for him at our Parramatta office for his first consultation with one of our personal injury solicitors.

Our Approach

The client signed up with GMP by signing our “No Win, No Fee” Costs Agreement. Upon signing the Costs Agreement, we immediately wrote to the doctor’s office issuing a letter of demand.

A barrister was briefed and provided advice on liability and evidence that should be obtain in support of the client’s case. In accordance with our pro-active case management, proceedings were commenced in the District Court of New South Wales. An expert liability report was commissioned by Gerard Malouf and Partners and medical assessments arranged with a forensic psychiatrist, orthopaedic surgeon and occupational therapist.

The Result

With all the relevant evidence available, we were able to enter into settlement negotiations and settle a claim for $80,000.

Garbis Kolokossian Lawyer

Garbis Kolokossian

The leading rule for the lawyer, as for the man of every other calling, is diligence. Leave nothing for to-morrow which can be done to-day. – Abraham Lincoln
Frequently Asked Questions

More Information

Public liability refers to the responsibilities owners or occupants of a public space have to protect anyone who enters. If the owners or occupants fall short of these responsibilities, resulting in an injury, a case for compensation can be made.

Some of the most common incidents covered by public liability law include:

  • The food or drink from a restaurant makes you sick: The most common example of this type of public liability is food poisoning, however improperly disclosed allergens could also lead to litigation.
  • A slip and fall accident caused by negligence: Slip and fall incidents are especially common in busy public places such as playgrounds, schools, shopping centres, common walkways in buildings and outdoor event venues. They can result from negligent behaviour if poorly lit, uneven, unmarked or slippery surfaces are involved, amongst other reasons.
  • Injury caused by poor workmanship: If a product used by a space fails mechanically and causes an injury, a public liability claim can often be made. Examples include exploding gas bottles, poorly constructed furnishings and inadequate building structures. These cases may also be eligible for product liability litigation, if you decide to pursue both the property owner and the product manufacturer.
  • An attack by an animal while in a space: If the owners or occupants of a space fail to keep an animal, whether domestic or wild, contained as a result of negligence, you may have a potential case.

Following an initial meeting, the first task will be to establish the general facts of the case. This will include your medical diagnosis, which will need to be confirmed and documented by a doctor; and proof that the person or company at fault owed you a duty of care, which will need to be demonstrated. Together, this will show that your injury occurred when they breached that duty of care.

From there a further investigation will proceed—contacting and interviewing witnesses, speaking with expert consultants, and more—all in order to bolster the strength of your case even further. Only once this process is complete, and your claim can be demonstrated and proven in full, will the process move on to the next step.

Public liability claims enable you to recoup the financial and emotional costs of suffering an injury due to someone else’s negligence. Defendants regularly offer monetary settlements to claimants, particularly if they acknowledge liability and believe they would lose in court.

But should you accept the settlement or proceed to the later stages of litigation instead, where a judge will have the final decision? Every case is different, but here are some of the factors you may wish to consider before making your choice:

  1. The size of the settlement
  2. The strength of your case
  3. Your patience levels
  4. Your lawyer’s advice

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Gerard Malouf & Partners
 — Personal Injury Compensation Lawyers

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