PUBLIC LIABILITY CLAIMS
In What Circumstances Can I Make a Claim For Personal Injuries Suffered in a Public Place?
Where injury and loss has been suffered through accident, the law provides that the wrongdoer or negligent person or organisation should compensate you for your loss. The injury or loss could occur in either a private, public, or commercially owned premises.
Public liability claims are commonly made for injury and loss suffered:
in residential premises such as units, apartments or houses;
in public places like parks, gardens, sporting fields, playgrounds, schools, or universities;
in commercial buildings like shopping centres, restaurants, hotels, bars, nightclubs, gyms, indoor playgrounds, amusement venues, ice skating rings;
in planes, boats or public transportation;
as a result of a dog attack;
due to food poisoning or contamination events.
Most places and organisations are covered with public liability insurance, and the claim is usually paid out by an insurer.
Are There Time Limits Which I have to Comply With in Making a Public Liability Claim?
Generally, in Western Australia, court proceedings must be commenced within 3 years of the accident.
Can I Still Claim For My Injury And Loss If I Am Partially at Fault?
Yes, you can still make claim for your injury and loss even if you are partly at fault. Your claim, however, will be discounted by a percentage commensurate with the degree of fault attributable to you causing the accident. This is commonly described as the deduction for contributory negligence.
What Can I Do to Assist the Progress of My Public Liability Compensation Claim?
Keep a detailed diary of events which records the impact of your symptoms, the treatment you receive, work time lost due to injury and treatment and travel expenses;
Follow the advice of medical practitioners and seek treatment when advised to;
Generally do not give statements without first obtaining legal advice;
Be careful not to publish comments and images on social media that can be taken out of context and damage your claim;
Be conscious that insurers sometimes put compensation claimants under video surveillance, and activities undertaken should match what you tell doctors and treatment providers you are doing.