Tenant injury case dismissed

A tenant left partially paralysed after falling down stairs in a rental home has failed in a lawsuit against the property owner.

The recent case could provide some comfort for landlords concerned about liability for personal injury, according to QLD law firm Coopers Grace Ward.

A court found the fall happened because the stairs didn’t fully meet relevant Australian standards – and that they could have been made safer relatively inexpensively.

Nevertheless the court knocked back the case, finding that the landlord did not know about the defects and could not be reasonably expected to have identified them.

In a legal alert, Coopers Grace Ward said landlords found liable in personal injury cases generally had some earlier notice of the risk: “Landlords would be unwise to ignore specific defects brought to their attention during a tenancy,” the lawyers advised.