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Cases and Articles of Note

Professional Negligence

1. Canon Finance Australia Limited v Reliance Medical Practice Pty Ltd & Ors (No 7) [2020] NSWSC 554

– Successful defence of a finance broker. Judgment is currently reserved in respect of an application for a personal costs order against the legal representatives of the defendant/cross claimant.

2. Thiess v Parsons Brinckerhoff [2016] NSWSC 173

– Multi party dispute in connection with the collapse of the Lane Cove Tunnel during construction where David Williams SC and I acted for the geotechnical monitoring engineer.

3. Aquatec-Maxcon Pty Ltd v Barwon Region Water Authority (No 2) [2006] VSC 117

– An important case on proportionate liability in the context of multi-party dispute when I was unled and acted for the structural design engineer for a sewerage plant.

4. Brand v Monks [2009] NSWSC 1454

– Successful defence of a town planner who had reported her client’s unlawful clearing of land to the relevant authorities.

5. Monaghan Surveyors Pty Ltd v Stratford Glen-Avon Pty Ltd [2012] NSWCA 94

– David Williams SC and I acted for a surveyor who had amended plans prepared for the creation of a new right of carriageway without notice to the dominant and servient tenements. At issue was the damages that flowed from this breach of duty of care.

6. Gregory Allan Laughton v Barry C Smith & Associates (Unreported, District Court of New South Wales, E Olsson SC DCJ, 14 December 2011) 1-26. 5.

– Successful defence of the mechanical engineer who had allegedly been negligent in the design of the mechanical services at the home of the plaintiff.

7. Hourani v Siemsen [2012] NSWDC 203

8. Dymocks Book Arcade Pty Ltd v Capral Ltd [2013] NSWSC 514.

9. Jurkovic v Hubbard [2013] NSWDC 21.

Indemnity Costs and Costs orders against third parties

10. Brand v Monks [2010] NSWSC 313 (indemnity costs against 3rd party Director)

11. Bateman Long and Maloney Pty Ltd v Long Beach Land Co Pty Ltd [2011] NSWSC 1495 (third party costs order)


12. Coates Hire Operations Pty Ltd v Rivercorp Pty Ltd & John Philip Brosnan & Stephen McCann; Stephen McCann v Rivercorp Pty Ltd & John Philip Brosnan & Anthony Jerard Rowe (Unreported, District Court of New South Wales, O’Toole DCJ, 18 April 2012) 1-37.

– Successful defence of a claim under a guarantee.

13. Zanrush Pty Limited v Donovan Sendall (Unreported, Local Court of New South Wales, Magistrate Bradd, 20 December 2011) 1-11.

14. Filmlock Pty Ltd v Nissi Investments Pty Ltd (No 2) [2013] NSWSC 959.

Indemnities and Leapfrog orders

15. Aquatec-Maxcon Pty Ltd v Barwon Region Water Authority (No 9) [2007] VSC 531.

Employment –notice periods

16. Adventure World Travel Pty Ltd v Newsom [2014] NSWCA 174 (affirming the decision of Gibson DCJ on 27 Sept 2013).

Real estate and conveyancing

17. Monzer Tabbouch v Scott Devlin [2008] NSWSC 600

– Significant case establishing that 14 days constitutes a reasonable time for a notice to complete.

18. Gupta v Fordham Laboratories Pty Ltd [2018] NSWSC 551

– A case in respect of agreements to lease, the entitlement to specific performance and when a party may have abandoned their agreement to lease.


19. Traxys Europe SA v Balaji Coke Industry Pvt Ltd (No 2) [2012] FCA 276

Advice Work

20. For various insurers in respect of Insurance coverage for all Financial Lines Policies including CAR Policies, Management Liability Policies, Product Liability Policies, Professional Indemnity Policies.

21. For purchasers and vendors in connection with their rights under the contracts for sale.

Negotiated Outcomes

22. Strategic preparation of multiple cases in connection with:

  • retail and other commercial leases and contracts for sale;
  • professional indemnity claims for architects, certifiers, real estate agents and other professionals;
  • restraint of trade in contracts for employment of real estate agents; and
  • commercial disputes involving Macquarie University for hearing which were resolved on favourable terms.

Recent Publications of Note

1. JW Carter and L Chan, Contract and the Australian Consumer Law, Federation Press (March 2019)

– A text that explores the extent to which the ACL has modified the law of contract. The effects of the provisions in respect of misleading or deceptive conduct, unconscionable conduct, exclusion clauses, unfair contract terms and consumer guarantees are explored;

Prescribed text for the contracts and torts law course at the University of Sydney.

2. L Chan and JW Carter, Mann v Paterson Constructions Pty Ltd – New Law for Quantum Meruit Claims in Building Contracts, (2020) 36 BCL 1.

Prescribed reading for the Remedies in Contract course for the University of Melbourne Master of Construction Law Program.

3. Chan, The successful delivery of Infrastructure Projects – a management rather than a legal issue, Brooking Prize winner and published by the Society of Construction Law and in the upcoming issue of Australian Construction Law Newsletter..

4. Contributing author to Bailey, Construction Law in Australia, Thomson Reuters, 4th edition, 2018 – chapters on Professional Liability and Insuring Risk in Construction Projects

Prescribed text for the University of Melbourne Master of Construction Law Program.

5. Chan, Insuring Risk in Construction Projects, (2018) 34 BCL 378

– An expanded and academic version of the chapter in Bailey’s Construction Law in Australia setting out key insurance issues in construction projects.

6. Burman, Kotze and Chan, Lane Cove Tunnel Collapse and Sinkhole a Forensic Review (in 3 parts) – Part 1, the collapse; Part 2, post failure investigations and Part 3, the legal aftermath, (2018) 53(4) Australian Geomechanics 21, 35 and 51 respectively

– An unexpectedly controversial paper in the geotechnical community which posits that the cause of the collapse of the Lane Cove Tunnel arose from construction defects at odds with the findings of McDougall J in the Supreme Court Proceedings.

– Hundreds of copies of this paper have been supplied to the geotechnical community.

7. Chan, The enforceability of extended contractual warranties – can the hurdle of applicable limitation periods be overcome? (2016) 32(3) BCL 1

– A work on referenced widely by construction lawyers;

– Researched and prepared at the invitation of and the guidance of Professor J W Carter.

8. Chan, International Disputes, the Execution of Foreign Arbitral Awards in the Asia Pacific and Two Case Studies (2015) 28 NYILR 1

– A work exploring the different approaches to enforcement of arbitral awards in the Asia Pacific Region prepared at the invitation of the editor of the New York International Law Review.

9. Chan, International disputes and the execution of foreign arbitral awards in the Asia Pacific (2014) Vol 9 issue 1 CLInt 33 10. Chan, A Penumbral Duty of care – is a principled approach possible? (2013) 21 TLJ 106

– A work exploring the salient features test and its potential application.

11. Chan, When Conveyances go Wrong — Vendor breaches Laina (2011) 20 APLJ 33

– A work exploring the disclosure obligations of a vendor pursuant to a contract for sale and the consequences of non-compliance.

12. Chan, When Conveyances go Wrong – Unwanted Caveats and Fraud (July 2009) Australian Property Investor Magazine 50

13. Multiple case notes in the LexisNexis Insurance Law Bulletin in 2019 and 2020. In particular, Chan, The Opal Tower is a product — the purpose of product liability policies Icon Co (NSW) v Liberty Mutual Insurance — (2020) 36(7) ILB 110.

14. Reporter for the BCL.

Let Laina Help you!

If you need any help, please feel free to email Laina. She will get back to you within 1 business day. Or if in a hurry, just call Laina’s chambers on +612 8023 9026

laina.chan@selbornechambers.com.au Mon – Fri 09:00-17:00