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Our legal experts will keep you up to date on all relevant and current developments.

The Importance of Medical Records: Foti v Biordi [2021] NSWDC 496

In this case note, Insurance Special Counsel Joanne Vesper takes a look at the recent decision in Foti v Biordi [2021] NSWDC 496, delivered by Her Honour Judge Gibson of the NSW District Court on 16 September 2021.  Holman Webb Lawyers acted for the Defendants.


Decennial Liability Insurance Considered for Apartment Buildings in New South Wales

The New South Wales Government is considering ‘Decennial Liability’ insurance (or inherent defect insurance) - with the NSW Building Commission undertaking research, and due to report back to the Government in early 2022.


Insurers Feel The Heat as COVID-19 Test Cases Mount

On 25 June 2021, the High Court of Australia refused two insurers special leave to appeal the decision of the NSW Court of Appeal in HDI Global Specialty SE v Wonkana No 3 Pty Ltd [2020] NSWCA 296.

The NSW Court of Appeal unanimously held that insurers could not rely on an exclusion clause contained in certain policies to refuse indemnity for business interruption claims arising out of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The first test case does not mandate a blanket approach to policy coverage for all business interruption claims. Each will turn on the language of each policy wording and the circumstances of each claim.

Insurers have sought further judicial guidance on a number of other matters affecting the operation of business interruption policies in the context of COVID-19 in a second test case, due to be heard by the Federal Court later this year.

This article was originally published by the Law Society of New South Wales in the Law Society Journal, Issue 80 August 2021.


Context Must be Considered Where There is Ambiguity in an Insurance Policy
Thursday 29 July 2021 / by Stephanie Davis & Heather McIntosh posted in Insurance Property Opal Tower Construction Insurance Insurance Policy Construction Contract

In the Full Federal Court decision of Liberty Mutual Insurance Company Australia Branch trading as Liberty Specialty Markets v Icon Co (NSW) Pty Ltd [2021] FCAFC 126 given on 20 July 2021, the Full Court addressed the construction and scope of thirdparty liability policies in the context of claims made by a building and construction company for losses occurring as a result of the manifestation of serious defects within a building, during the defects liability period.

Key Take Away
  1. The Full Court maintained that in the event of ambiguity in an insurance policy, the context (including the market) in which the parties are operating, as well as the commercial purpose of the policy, must be considered (Icon’s Cross Appeal); and
  2. Similarly, the Full Court considered that the context of Insurance Policies must always be considered in circumstances where the definition of ordinary words are not clear (QBE Appeal).
  3. The Full Court ultimately prefers Policy Interpretation which refers to extrinsic contextual material where Policy terms are not clear.

Lucy Rooney Listed in Elite Women in Insurance 2021: Insurance Business Magazine

Holman Webb is pleased to announce that Insurance Partner Lucy Rooney has been listed in Insurance Business Magazine's Elite Women in Insurance 2021!


Insurance Webinar Recording: Apportionment and Contribution in Insurance

Click through to watch Holman Webb's latest insurance webinar: Apportionment and Contribution in Insurance.

Presented by General Insurance Partner Peter Bennett and Associate Linda Huynh on Tuesday 6 July 2021, this webinar examines a range of significant cases relating to apportionment and contribution in insurance.

Discussion topics include:

  • Contributory negligence.
  • Failing to keep a proper lookout.
  • Intoxication.
  • Contributory negligence can defeat a claim by being determined at 100%.
  • Contributory negligence in contract.
  • Joint tortfeasor, where judgment entered for a defendant.
  • Proportionate liability.
  • Where the plaintiff is unable to recover from the concurrent wrongdoer.
  • Liability of an employer for a hire worker.

Holman Webb Announces Six Promotions Across Three Offices

​Holman Webb is pleased to announce six promotions across our Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane offices – effective 1 July 2021.


Holman Webb Listed as Finalist - Lawyers Weekly Australian Law Awards 2021

Holman Webb Lawyers is proud to relay that the firm has been listed as a finalist in two categories in the Lawyers Weekly Australian Law Awards 2021:

  • Law Firm of the Year
  • Insurance Team of the Year

Click through for more information on this year's finalists, and upcoming winner announcements.


Upcoming Insurance Webinar: Apportionment and Contribution in Insurance (Tuesday 6 July)

Holman Webb is delighted to announce our second Insurance Webinar of 2021, hosted by the firm's General Insurance Team and presented by Partner Peter Bennett and Associate Linda Huynh.

Click through to register your attendance today!


John Van de Poll Listed as Finalist in the Lawyers Weekly Partner of the Year Awards 2021

Holman Webb is pleased to announce that Partner and Insurance Group National Team Leader John Van de Poll has been listed as a finalist in the Lawyers Weekly Partner of the Year Awards 2021 - Insurance Partner of the Year category!

This finalist position follows John's Insurance Partner of the Year wins in both 2016 and 2019.


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