Sydney tenant sues real estate agent
Our client was a young lady who was a tenant in a unit owned by one of the defendants.
The real estate agent were the managing agents of the premises pursuant to a residential tenancy agreement.
Our client was a lawful entrant on the premises pursuant to the lease agreement signed between the parties.
Whilst she was living in the premises she slipped on a pool of water which had leaked from the shower recess onto the floor causing her to subsequently fall and suffer serious injuries.
She suffered a significant laceration injury to her right ring finger, an injury to her lower back, and an injury to her left knee as well as psychological consequences arising from the accident. She required hospitalisation and surgery to her right ring finger due to loss of blood at the time.
The allegation of negligence against the owner of the unit as well as the real estate agent was that they never took reasonable steps to ensure that the premises were safe, fit and habitable, in a state of good and serviceable repair, that they failed to repair, replace and prevent water leaking from the shower recess in circumstances where both Defendants knew, by way of multiple complaints made by our client that the shower recess was leaking and unsafe.
Photographs and expert evidence were served to substantiate the particulars of negligence against either defendants in the proceedings. It was our considered view that our client would succeed against one or both of the defendants in the proceedings by reason of the circumstances of the accident and numerous prior complaints with regard to the leaking of the shower recess.
Our client was also referred for treatment from doctors and specialists to address the nature and extent of her injuries and continuing disabilities arising from the accident. The medico-legal evidence determined that she was suffering from permanent impairment in relation to her right hand, lower back and left knee as a result of the accident.
Both defendants filed their defence and denied liability in respect of negligence and disputed the medical expert evidence in respect of any injuries, losses and damage claimed by our client as a result of the accident. They also had her medically examined and assessed for the purposes of the proceedings.
The matter was listed for lengthy hearing before the court. After the parties had exchanged their liability and medical evidence, all parties agreed to have the matter listed for an informal settlement conference for the purposes of considering a settlement of the claim.
Our client had claimed damages in negligence including non-economic loss, full permanent impairment, pain and suffering, past and future out of pocket expenses, past and future loss of wages, past and future loss of superannuation, and past and future care which were all substantiated by way of the medical evidence prepared, filed and served in the proceedings.
The defendants agreed to settle our client’s claim out of court. She was awarded substantial damages as a result of her injuries, permanent disabilities and losses flowing from the accident.
This was a significant victory for a tenant leasing a premises pursuant to a lease and slipping and falling and suffering serious injuries as a result of the negligence of the owner and the real estate agent in circumstances were they should have addressed the leaking water from the shower recess and our client’s previous multiple complaints concerning the leaking water and the risk that is posed to her whilst renting the unit.
We also established that there are significant legal obligations and duties of care placed upon the owner of a premise if they lease the premises, to ensure that the premises are in a fit, habitable, safe, and in a state of good and serviceable repair.
It also places significant obligations on real estate agents who receive complaints from tenants in relation to rectifying the premises that they are the managing agents for so as not to create a risk of injury to the tenant whilst they are residing in the unit pursuant to a lease agreement. If the real estate agent fails to act on the complaints by the tenant, and in this case there were multiple complaints made by the tenant in relation to the leaking shower recess, the real estate agent could also be found to be liable in negligence for damages as has occurred in this case.
If you are a tenant of a premises and you are residing on the premises pursuant to a lease agreement and you slip and fall and suffer injuries on the premises, you may be entitled to pursue a negligence claim against the owner and the real estate agent in circumstances where you have made multiple prior complaints which have not been acted upon, and that should have been acted upon so as to prevent you suffering serious injuries, losses and damages.
In this particular case our client was able to sue the owner of the unit and the real estate agent in question pursuant to the lease agreement and receive a substantial award of damages in compensation for her permanent injuries and continuing disabilities arising from the accident.
If you have suffered serious injuries and disabilities as a result of a slip and fall and an accident on premises that you may or may not be leasing from the owner and/or the real estate agent at the time, you may be entitled to receive an award for compensation as a result of establishing negligence against the owner and the real estate agent for them failing to act on any previous complaints in circumstances where they knew or ought to have known of the complaints and by failing to act on the prior complaints were the cause of you suffering your serious injuries, losses and damage and which have affected your ability to live a normal life.
For a free no obligation consultation, please contact us on our toll free number, 1300 768 780 so an appointment can be arranged for you to attend to protect your legal rights in the matter.