What is liability?

When providing advice to a client in respect of a potential personal injury claim, the first exercise I undertake is to consider the likely prospects of establishing that the injured person will succeed in their claim by proving that their injury has occurred as a result of negligent actions on behalf of a third party.

Reference to liability in personal injury claims is reference to a determination that a wrongdoer is liable for injuries caused to a claimant.

It is important to note that liability may be established on a number of grounds including but not necessarily limited to:

  • Negligence;
  • Breach of contract; or
  • Breach of statutory duty.

In establishing negligence, it must be established that:

  • The injured person was owed a duty of care;
  • That duty of care has been breached;
  • As a result of the breach of duty, the injured person sustained their injury.

If these elements are established, prima facie liability is established and the claim then moves to a consideration of what damages the injured person may have sustained due to the negligent actions.

Similarly, a claim for injuries arising out of a breach of contract requires a determination as to whether the express or implied terms of a contract that may exist between the injured person and the defendant have been breached such as to give rise to the cause of the injured persons’ injuries.

Finally, a right in liability may exist as a result of duties created by government statutes.  An example of such are the duties that exist in the Australian Consumer Law that require the manufacturers and suppliers of goods to ensure that such goods are “of merchantable quality” or “fit for their purpose”.  These duties are commonly associated with claims for injuries arising from defective products purchased by consumers in Australia.

What is important to note is that the very fact that a person has been injured does not necessarily give rise to a claim for damages.

The first step in establishing such a claim is to analyse the circumstances of the event that caused the injury and to determine the likely prospects of establishing liability on one of these bases.

The lawyers at Crew Legal have extensive experience in protecting injured person’s rights in Queensland.

Please contact Crew Legal for a cost and obligation free initial appointment to discuss your situation.

How can Crew Legal help?

Crew Legal pride ourselves on providing quality advice at the right price. We will ensure that you receive the best advice for your situation and are committed to ensuring that everybody has access to that advice.

We provide a first consultation completely free and with no obligation. If the claim is undertaken, we will proceed with such claims on a ‘No Win/No Fee’ basis.

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