Nicole has specialised in insurance litigation since she was admitted to practice in 2000. She has experience in public liability, property damage, products liability and professional indemnity. Nicole has undertaken work for major insurers, local councils, shopping centre owners, supermarkets, strata clients, and London insurers/underwriters. Nicole’s knowledge extends to specialist lines of insurance such as office bearer’s liability and marine.
Nicole regularly provides advice in relation to indemnity, liability, contribution, recovery and quantum. She has handled numerous complex matters involving catastrophic injury, obscure injury, causation and causes of action such as discrimination.
Nicole is an experienced and confident advocate and a skilled negotiator. She has experience in numerous jurisdictions including New South Wales, Queensland and the Australian Capital Territory.
The experience Nicole brings together with her meticulous attention to detail means she has the capacity to look after her clients and meet the challenges of litigation.
- Catastrophic injury - Acting on behalf of an insurer in relation to a claim involving an incomplete quadriplegic who fell in a strata premises. This was the largest claim the insurer had ever had. The matter involved complex liability and contractual issues. Damages were also significant, with the Plaintiff’s claim exceeding AUD 12 million.
- Local Government claim involving contractual indemnity and dual insurance - Acting on behalf of a local Council in relation to an accident that occurred in an outdoor dining area on the Council’s footpath. The matter involved consideration of the terms and conditions of a licence agreement and Council’s footway policies. It also involved questions of indemnity and dual insurance, including consideration of Council’s insurance arrangements. The matter resolved with Judgment in favour of Council.
- Catastrophic injury in motor vehicle accident - Acting on behalf of a local Council in relation to a motor vehicle accident. The matter involved consideration of whether the accident was a motor vehicle accident for the purposes of the Motor Accidents Compensation Act, the authority responsible for the road on which the accident occurred, the application of Section 45 of the Civil Liability Act 2002 and causation. Damages were also significant, with the Plaintiff having suffered brain damage and permanent paralysis to the left side of his body. The matter resolved with Judgment in favour of Council.
- Directors and officers claim involving defamation - Acting on behalf of the owners of strata premises that is subject to a covenant in favour of the local Council providing that the only persons who may reside in the strata premises are people over the age of 55 or people with a disability. The Applicant, who was age 35, brought proceedings in the Federal Magistrates Court against 8 owners alleging discrimination on the grounds of age. The matter involved consideration of whether the owners were entitled to indemnity under an office bearer’s policy and the law of age discrimination.
- Occupier's liability - Acting on behalf of the owner of a shopping centre in relation to a claim for personal injury suffered when the roof of the building partially collapsed in a large storm. The Plaintiff slipped on water on the floor of the shopping centre, sustaining injury. The matter involved consideration of whether the Insured knew or ought to have known that the roof was at risk of collapse and its responsibilities in relation to maintenance of the roof. An appropriate expert report was sourced which enabled Nicole to resolve the matter at an early stage in the proceedings on terms that there be Judgment in favour of the Insured.
- Liability - Acting on behalf of owners of strata premises in relation to claims for personal injury including respiratory problems and psychological injury allegedly suffered due to exposure to mould.
- Injury on a building site - Acting on behalf of the major insurer of a timber supplier in relation to personal injury suffered when a timber beam collapsed during construction of a home. Nicole successfully obtained a complete recovery from the manufacturer of the timber after undertaking extensive investigations in relation to the production of the timber and the systems of inspection employed by the manufacturer and supplier.
- Slip and fall - Acting on behalf of the owner of strata premises in relation to a slip and fall that was alleged to have occurred on the common property of the premises. The matter involved interpretation of the Strata Plan, the Strata Management Agreement and a lease agreement. Nicole was able to shift 100% of liability to another party.
- Indemnity - Advising London Underwriters in relation to recovery proceedings brought by a workers compensation insurer against the owner of a hotel. A separate claim was also brought by the injured worker. The named insured was deregistered. Indemnity was denied to the insured after extensive investigations carried out in the matter.
- Marine claims - Acting on behalf of a marine insurer in relation to personal injury claims suffered on boating vessels.