Gerard Malouf and Partners, acted for MB in a public liability claim where she tripped on a raised part of the main footpath area belonging to a Shopping Centre in Camden.
MB was proceeding on the main footpath to a Shopping Centre in Camden with the intention of visiting the center. Unbeknown to her, the footpath was uneven and raised by approximately 5cm from the main ground. MB tripped on the raised part of the footpath and fell.
MB was significantly injured in the accident, suffering injuries to her head, left arm, left elbow, wrist, hand and back. She contacted Gerard Malouf and Partners in regards to a personal injury claim. MB had many questions in regards to what is a public liability claim. Gerard Malouf and Partners were able to provide sufficient guidance and advice about her matter, including whether she had reasonable prospects of success.
Due to the accident, MB suffered significant past economic loss, as she was unable to return to work. MB was absent from work for approximately 4 months and thereafter returned on a lower hourly rate. Given the nature of her injuries, MB would also require significant domestic care and assistance in the future.
Gerard Malouf and Partners and their highly specialised accident lawyers collated evidence and obtained an expert report from a Consulting Engineer in regards to the raised footpath. The Consulting Engineer noted that the discrepancy in height, although amounted to 10mm, was difficult to detect due to the colour and texture of the surface.
Given the nature of the case, liability was difficult to prove. Fortunately, the accident was recorded on CCTV Footage, which was given to Gerard Malouf and Partners. After observing the footage Gerard Malouf and Partners argued, amongst other things, that the Defendant failed to ensure the raise area was identified or marked, failed to rectify the raised area and devise or institute an adequate system of inspection that would have identified the risk of harm to MB.
In rebuttal the Defendants argued, amongst other things, that they did not breach the duty of care owed to MB and that she had contributed to her fall as she failed to watch where she was walking, failed to take adequate precautions of her safety and failed to assess the characteristics of the area.
Given the issues with liability and the quantum of damages, proceedings were lodged at the District Court of New South Wales.
In a bid to resolve the matter in an expedited manner a settlement conference was conducted to quantify damages.
At conference Gerard Malouf and Partners, was able to persuade the Defendant’s solicitors that MB’s position was both genuine and realistic. The claim was settled for $60,000.00. MB was extremely happy with this sum.