Thomas specialises in professional indemnity and directors’ and officers’ insurance with a focus on financial services. He regularly acts for financial services professionals, including financial planners, bookkeepers and accountants, in addition to other professional indemnity claims.

Thomas has significant experience acting for financial services professionals in complaints lodged with the Australian Financial Complaints Authority and regularly assists insurers and their insureds in that jurisdiction. Thomas is currently a member of the Professional Standards Committee of the Financial Advice Association Australia.

Thomas regularly provides advice to insurers and assists their insureds in relation to D&O and management liability claims including insolvent trading, shareholder oppression and class actions. He also assists insurers and their insureds with regulatory investigations including acting for insureds in relation to examinations before ASIC.

Thomas is known for his technical ability and commercial approach to litigation and utilises both to achieve positive outcomes for his clients.

Thomas is also actively involved in the firm’s Community Footprint pro bono program through the NSW Supreme Court Justice Connect referral system.

  • Advising underwriters across multiple policy years (and their insured) in relation to numerous complaints with the Australian Financial Complainants Authority involving systemic failures of an authorised representative and potential unauthorised financial advice by a third party.
  • Running proceedings on behalf of an insurer to the High Court of Australia in relation to a coverage dispute concerning the application of an aggregation provision to representative proceedings.
  • Advising insurers in relation to running and settlement of a recent $60 million shareholder class action against an organic baby formula manufacturer.
  • Providing coverage advice to insurers in relation to a $15 million insolvent trading claim. The claim concerned the potential trigger of a conduct exclusion in the policy and involved a detailed consideration of that exclusion, along with a consideration of the mechanisms in which to trigger the exclusion.
  • Defending professionals, including accountants, financial planners and real estate agents, in claims for negligence and breach of contract. Thomas has been able to achieve commercial outcomes to minimise both insured’s and insurers’ exposure.
  • Providing coverage advice to insurers in relation to cyber insurance claims arising from hacking, manipulation and ransom of insured’s computer systems.

Commercial Recoveries

  • Successfully recovering $9.2 million on behalf of a large insurance market in relation to a claim against the design and construction contractor of an impervious bund liner and associated drainage system. The recovery represented a 90% recovery for insurers after costs.
  • Acting in the successful recovery of $300,000 from a negligent excavation company without the need for commencing formal proceedings or incurring significant legal or expert fees.
  • Acting for insurers of coal and gas terminal in a $5 million recovery arising from a collision by a barge in a cyclone. The recovery involved a consideration of the Convention on Limitation of Liability for Maritime Claims and a detailed consideration of negligence in a natural disaster.
  • Acting for insurers of a recruitment company in successfully recovering $250,000 stolen by a former director through the use of a restorative justice mediation. The mediation provided an opportunity to leverage criminal proceedings against the former employee to obtain a 75% recovery after costs.
Areas of Expertise
  • Class Actions
  • Directors + Officers Liability
  • Financial Institutions
  • Professional Liability

Industry Representation
  • Financial Institutions + Services
  • Industrial + Commercial Property
  • Marine + Transport
  • Technology + Cyber

Professional Affiliations
  • Australian Insurance Law Association
  • Australian Professional Indemnity Group
  • Law Society of New South Wales