Public & Product Liability Public & Product Liability

Public & Product Liability


At Barry.Nilsson., our team of lawyers located in offices around Australia have extensive experience with handling third-party public and product liability claims.

They regularly assist insurers, mutuals, underwriters and brokers operating in both the Australian and London markets, as well as Australian-based self-insureds and third-party administrators.

Our public and product liability legal team is equipped to handle both personal injury and property damage matters. We have specific expertise in handling claims involving:

  • Complex policy coverage or indemnity issues
  • Large loss recoveries
  • Multi-party disputes
  • Defective products
  • Negligent and/or defective building work
  • Dual insurance claims.

We provide coverage advice for most claims in which we receive instructions and continue to manage coverage issues for you throughout claims, including where cover is declined or dipusted. We can also advise on any other issues relevant to managing your relationship with your clients.


Third-party personal injury claims

We have the skills to handle any personal injury matter, whatever its size or complexity.

Every year, we handle a high volume of claims, including those resulting from:

  • Assaults and bullying
  • Catastrophic injuries
  • Dependency
  • Dust diseases
  • Nervous shock
  • Slips and trips
  • Workplace injuries, including manual handling, working at heights, and working with machinery
  • Workplace health and safety issues, including investigations and coronial inquests.

We also deal with fraudulent claims and class actions, as well as sensitive claims that may attract media attention.

As a firm that was founded in Brisbane and has operated for many years in Queensland, we have particular expertise in handling claims falling under the Personal Injuries Proceedings Act 2002 (Qld).

Third-party property damage claims

Our lawyers are experienced in assisting insurers and their insureds with large third-party property damage claims, including those for:

  • Property damage resulting from flood or fire
  • Diminution of value of property or business, including business interruption
  • Damage to plant or equipment
  • Damage to motor, rail and marine vehicles (as well as associated infrastructure)
  • Contamination and pollution
  • Damage to buildings, including building defects.

As is the case with personal injury claims, we are well equipped to handle anything from small claims (such as house fires) to multi-million dollar claims and class actions.


We believe that there are a number of reasons why we tend to develop long-term relationships with our clients.

We look at every insurance matter strategically

At Barry.Nilsson., our lawyers understand that every claim, whatever its size, requires a tailored approach to achieve the best possible outcome for our clients. For instance, high-volume, less complex personal injury cases require a different strategy than media-sensitive, high-value and complex property claims.

We don’t just follow the standard claims management process for the sake of it. Instead, we work with you to develop the best possible strategy for managing your claim, especially if it is complex, and to meet your claim objectives.

Most importantly, our aim is always to achieve a sensible early resolution of every matter that lands on our desks.

We are highly skilled negotiators and advocates

In our experience, a high percentage of insurance claims can be resolved by employing the right negotiation skills. As a firm that specialises in alternative dispute resolution, our lawyers are equipped to resolve claims as quickly and cost-effectively as possible.

If a matter does end up in court, our lawyers are experienced and highly skilled advocates, so you know that you have the best possible representation.

We work with clients in a wide range of industries

We have expertise in managing public and product liability claims in the following industry sectors:

  • Agriculture
  • Building and construction, including complex construction and engineering matters
  • Contractors
  • Education
  • Host employers
  • Infrastructure
  • Local government
  • Manufacturing
  • Mining and resources
  • Real estate (including claims involving strata schemes, body corporates, community title schemes, developers and property managers)
  • Shopping centres
  • Telecommunications
  • Transport
  • Utilities.

Our knowledge of these industries means that we hit the ground running with any new claim.

We specialise in insurance

At Barry.Nilsson., insurance is our focus. We know the industry and what you need to be successful in it.

Many of our lawyers have undertaken secondments or worked in-house for large general insurers such as Suncorp, AIG, IAG, QBE European Operations and QBE Australia, as well as for brokers such as Marsh. This means that they know how your business works so they can assure that we meet those needs through the service we provide to you.

We’re responsive

We are always in regular communication with our clients. If you retain us, you will find that we’ll organise regular catch-ups to stay abreast of what is going on in your business and to ensure that we are meeting your expectations.


Our expertise and experience in public and product liability have led Doyle’s Guide to list us as a recommended firm for public and product liability in Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria, South Australia and Western Australia.

Other members of our team across Australia who have been recommended by Doyle’s Guide for public and product liability are:


Some of our public and product liability clients include: AIG, Chubb, Great Lakes Australia/Munich Re, IAG (including WFI, Elders, CGU and Lumley), Local Government Mutual (LGM), Marsh, Proclaim, QBE, Suncorp Group, Triton (now DWF), Gallagher Bassett, Lloyd’s syndicates and XL Catlin.

We have assisted clients based in Australia, New Zealand, the United States, Singapore, South Korea and Japan.



Our monthly eNewsletter Case Collective delivers important case law developments in the area of public and product liability to your inbox.

Advanced Personal Injury Claims Management Course

In collaboration with ANZIIF, we have developed Australia’s first Advanced Personal Injury Claims Management Course. The course deals with the law behind liability claims, and covers how it applies to:

  • Injury claims
  • Insurance policies
  • Statutory cover
  • Assessment of damages
  • Pre-litigation proceedings
  • Resolving disputes.

This course can be tailored to your needs should you wish to run it in-house.