Charles has worked solely in insurance law for over 20 years and is partner in our Sydney office. His core area of practice is general liability with specialities in personal injury, workers liability / recovery, property damage and coverage.
Charles regularly acts for clients in claims arising from the sports, leisure and entertainment arenas, slip and fall incidents, catastrophic losses, natural disasters (including bushfires) and building and construction related incidents (including professional indemnity claims against building professionals) as well as WorkCover prosecutions for OH&S breaches.
He defends claims against statutory authorities and instrumentalities, manufacturers and suppliers, occupiers and building professionals and regularly acts on matters for local and London market insurers.
Charles is regularly called on to provide advice on policy interpretation and has been involved in numerous coronial inquests. His representation on behalf of a contractor in a successful appeal to the High Court has now become the leading authority in Australia on duties owed by head contractors and sub-contractors.
Charles brings a client-focussed approach to claims service. He is a keen proponent of alternative dispute resolution processes and regularly appears at mediations and informal settlement conferences.
Areas of Expertise
- Personal Injury
- Workers Liability / Recovery
- Property Damage (3rd party)
- Coverage (stand alone)
- Subrogated Recoveries
- Construction & Infrastructure
- Consumer Goods
- Healthcare & Life Sciences
- Sport Leisure & Entertainment
- Acting on behalf of a contractor in a successful appeal to the High Court relevant to duties owed by head contractors and sub-contractors on a construction site: Leighton Contractors v Fox; Calliden Insurance Limited v Fox  HCA 35.
- Acting on behalf of a head contractor and successfully defending, including on appeal to the Court of Appeal, a claim for damages by a subcontractor’s employee who fell on site and suffered brain damage: Paul Minogue v David Rudd  NSWCA 345.
- Acting on behalf of a food manufacturer in respect to claims by patrons who suffered injury after allegedly contracting Salmonella Typhimurium.
- Acting on behalf of Sydney Catchment Authority in relation to 25 property damage claims arising from bushfires at Warragamba Dam.
- Acting on behalf of hydraulic engineers in a claim that sewer design services for a multi-tower development were carried out negligently.
- Acting in Arbitration Proceedings commenced in Malaysia against the structural engineers of the Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre.
- Acting on behalf of Roads Maritime Services (formerly RTA) in relation to Principal Arranged insurance claims arising from the expansion of the Pacific Highway.
- Defending public liability claims against occupiers of commercial and domestic premises.
- Defending various sporting organisations and bodies against claims for injury arising from sporting events.
- Acting on behalf of insurers in respect to property damage claims arising from Cyclone Yasi and various flood events.
- Acting in claims and policy disputes which considered:
- kidnap, ransom, and politician evacuation claims;
- fraudulent claims for non-employees;
- disability claims involving pre-existing conditions; and
- disability claims involving loss of mental powers.
- Acting on behalf of insurers of a strata development in relation to a subrogated claim for recovery of losses exceeding $20m sustained in a fire.
- Australia Insurance Law Association
- Australian Professional Indemnity Group
- Australian and New Zealand Institute of Insurance and Finance
- Claims Discussion Group
- Engineering Discussion Group
- Law Society of NSW
- McLennan v Insurance Australia Limited  NSWCA 300 – IYIR, 2014
- Exclusion clauses and policy interpretation – IYIR, 2014
- A common-sense approach to dangerous recreational activities – IYIR, 2014
- Victory for the landlord – the importance of interpreting documents in totality – IYIR, 2015
- Defining the ‘risk’ of recreational activities under the Civil Liability Act 2002 (NSW) – IYIR, 2015
- Recreational activities uncoloured under the Civil Liability Act: They include professional sports
- “Blick” outlook for cyclists – ACT Court of Appeal upholds $1.7 million judgment