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Professional Negligence

Professional Negligence

A claim can be brought against any person who holds themselves out as a professional extorting themselves as having a particular skill or expertise in an area. This would include lawyers, doctors, engineers and accountants for example.

In the event that a client engages a professional and as a result of that professional’s conduct the client suffers loss or damages then the client may have available to them a professional negligence claim. In order to successfully prosecute a professional negligence claim it must be established to the court’s satisfaction that the professional was negligent.

ARE YOU ELIGIBLE
TO MAKE A CLAIM?

The law imposes upon professionals a very high obligation and duty of care when dealing with their respective clients. This would include the client of a lawyer or the patient of a doctor. Such persons are required to exercise all due care skill and diligence in and about the performance of their obligations pursuant to their retainer with the client.

In respect of a professional negligence claim as against a doctor there is the intrusion of the Civil Liability Act 2002. It provides that in order for a doctor or treating health professional to be held liable in negligence by the court it is necessary to establish, by reference to peer professional opinion, that the doctor did not act in accordance with such opinion and as a result of which there has been injury, loss or damage suffered by the patient.

WHAT ARE YOU
ABLE TO CLAIM?

In considering the question of damages, the court seeks to place a person in a similar financial position to the position the person would have been in if the negligence had not occurred. If you are eligible to make a professional negligence claim for example against your former solicitor for failing to bring proceedings in time, you may be able to recover the value of damages in respect to the original cause of action which could include:

  • Past and future treatment expenses (if applicable);
  • Past and future wage loss (if applicable);
  • Past and future superannuation entitlements (if applicable);
  • Past and future domestic assistance (if applicable);

Non-economic loss (pain and suffering) if you have suffered a permanent injury/disability as a result of the negligence;

WHEN SHOULD YOU CONSULT A LAWYER ABOUT MAKING A CLAIM?

There are strict time limits in bringing a professional negligence claim which require court proceedings to be commenced within 6 years of the act of negligence (‘the limitation date’).

It is important to obtain experienced legal advice at the first available opportunity. That will enable your legal team to provide you with advice on the prospects of pursuing a professional negligence claim and appropriately prepare your claim well prior to the limitation date.

WHAT IS YOUR
NEXT STEP?

Our team of experienced lawyers are ready to speak with you to discuss your enquiry, establish whether a claim may be available and to advise on the best cause of action to maximise your return whilst minimising your risk.

WHY ARE BRYDEN’S LAWYERS THE RIGHT REPRESENTATION FOR YOU?

Brydens Lawyers have for over 40 years been prosecuting professional negligence claims to ensure that they receive the compensation to which they are entitled.

For over 40 years now Brydens Lawyers has been operating a ‘No Win – No Fee”, policy which, simply put, provides that if a personal injury or compensation client is unsuccessful in their claim then Brydens Lawyers will not raise a tax invoice for having acted on behalf of the client. That is, if the claim is unsuccessful we do not get paid. More information about how this works can be found on our No Win – No Fee page.

WE DO PROFESSIONAL NEGLIGENCE WELL. HERE ARE SOME EXAMPLES:

Over the last 40 years Brydens have successfully prosecuted a large number of professional negligence claims which have included:

  • Acting for client’s injured in motor accident and workplace injury claims who have received negligent advice from their former lawyers;
  • Acting for clients who have been negligently treated by doctors and other health professionals;
  • Acting for client’s who have received negligent advice from accountants, builders and architects which has resulted in significant loss and damage.
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An article published by insurancenews.com.au on 22 November 2019 references a reported $876 million net loss by NSW State owned Icare for its workers compensation Nominal Insurer scheme last financial year amid rising medical costs and falling bond yields.

It is reported that gross premiums were in the order of $2.5 billion while net claims expenses/scheme costs were just over $4 billion. That is, there was a reported underwriting loss of almost $2.4 billion while Icare received a net investment revenue of just over $1.6 billion.

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