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Yolanta Figiel

Partner

Melbourne

+61 3 8399 6123

Yolanta has practised across the areas of professional liability and public and product liability for both insurers and self-insured clients, including statutory recovery actions brought against her clients by the Victorian WorkCover Authority. She has substantial expertise in personal injury litigation and all categories of pupil injury claims, acting for both government departments and insurers.

EXPERIENCE & EXPERTISE

Yolanta’s practice includes the defence of:

  • Actions brought against insureds by workers and by the Victorian WorkCover Authority, pursuant to the Workplace Injury Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 2013 (Vic)
  • Pupil injury claims ranging in nature from bullying, bodily injury to historical abuse
  • Claims against property owner / managers, manufacturers, defence contractors, agricultural service providers, logistics providers, equipment hire companies and farmers.

As part of her hands-on approach to these categories of claims, Yolanta ensures she obtains a full understanding of the business of each insured and Government department in order to provide the client with the best possible defence strategy. Yolanta’s across-the-board experience in the above areas has allowed her to develop good working relationships with both plaintiff lawyers and statutory insurer lawyers, enabling early ADR opportunities.

Yolanta’s approach to litigated claims is meticulous and she is known for her careful consideration of the evidence and appraisal of likely outcomes. Her negotiation style is engaging and results driven.

ACCOMPLISHMENTS

Student injury claims highlights include:

  • Defence of litigation regarding an amputation injury involving a four-year-old boy; contribution successfully sought from the manufacturer of playground equipment
  • Defence of historical and current abuse claims on behalf of the State of Victoria.

    Litigated claims highlights include:

  • A Statutory Authority in the Victorian Supreme Court in Judicial Review of a Medical Panel determination (Pickett v Parks Victoria & Ors [2018] VSC 473)
  • A transport logistics company in the Victorian Supreme Court in a common law damages proceeding made against it by a worker (Quilligan v Copyshift Group Pty Ltd & Ors [2018] VSC 784)
  • A transport logistics company in the Victorian County Court in a third party action for indemnity by a Victorian council sued for statutory reimbursement of compensation and indemnification by the Victorian WorkCover Authority (Victorian Workcover Authority v Yarra City Council & Ors [2014] VCC 1841 and Victorian Workcover Authority v Yarra City Council & Ors [2014] VCC 1930)
  • Defence of Wrongs Act 1958 (Vic) proceedings for a number of Victorian Government Business Enterprises involving varied liability and quantum issues.

Recognition

Ranked as a Leading – Public & Product Lawyer (Defendant), Recommended Lawyer – Workers Compensation (Defendant) and Dust Diseases (Defendant) in Victoria by Doyle’s Guide 2020.

Expertise

Qualifications

  • Bachelor of Arts, 1999, Monash University
  • Bachelor of Laws, 2004, Monash University

Memberships

  • Australian Insurance Law Association
  • Women In Insurance (Victoria)