Advocates’ immunity – Strike out fails

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[co-authors: John Dillon; Ryan Cable]

A strike out application on the grounds that the claim was immune from suit recently failed, even though the judge agreed that immunity applied. The solicitors’ negligence case of Attwells v Jackson Lalic [2013] NSWSC 1510 is a perhaps frustrating reminder that strike out applications can often add to costs rather than reduce them. Justice Harrison, while agreeing that settlement advice was immune from suit and following last year’s NSW Court of Appeal decision in Donnellan v Woodland [2012] NSWCA 433, ultimately declined to make a final order, finding that a full hearing of the evidence is required to determine whether the Atwells’ claims are defeated entirely on the basis of immunity from suit.

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DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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