George is an expert in common law damages claims and has particular expertise in advising insurers in relation to complex and large-scale litigation across various jurisdictions.
He has been involved in dozens of property damage class actions or mass tort recovery actions since 2013. He has a deep understanding of the intricacies of class action civil procedure, and the complex legal issues affecting duties of care and recoveries in private nuisance.
George is considered by his clients as a trusted advisor and has a reputation of providing practical, concise and cost-effective advice whilst helping his clients to secure successful outcomes. He is highly regarded for his project and people management expertise, and is a mentor to many junior lawyers.
- Successfully acting for three major insurers and 400 plaintiffs in the Supreme Court of Tasmania regarding property damage losses arising from a bushfire totalling almost $30 million. The case made judicial history as Tasmania’s first ever entirely electronic trial (Prestage v Barrett  TASSC 27).
- Successfully negotiating the recovery of over $20 million for three insurers and 250 plaintiffs in the Victorian Supreme Court regarding property damage and farming losses arising from the 2018 Terang and Garvoc bushfires.
- In litigation now before the High Court, successfully representing four major insurers and almost 200 plaintiffs in Supreme Court of Western Australia proceedings in relation to property damage losses totalling more than $12 million arising from a bushfire (Herridge v Electricity Networks Corporation t/as Western Power  WASCA).
- Recently having been appointed as a damages assessor for the 2011 Queensland Floods class action which settled for about $400 million. George and his team will assess hundreds of flood victims’ claims.
- Acting as a common law damages assessor following settlement of the Kilmore East and Murrindindi bushfires class actions. George supervised a team of 15 paralegals and lawyers in assisting over 5,000 people with assessed losses of $400 million. George also helped his insurer clients to recover $180 million.
- Representing a major insurer in defending a County Court claim involving a $1 million Lamborghini where the plaintiff was also claiming $300,000 for hire car expenses to judgment. By putting together a well-prepared case and leaving no stone unturned, ultimately the Court reduced the hire car claim to nil and the plaintiff’s claim was reduced by over 60%.
- Acting for a number of insurers in respect of a recent class action issued by a plaintiff law firm. George provided his clients with complex yet practical advice as to whether the legal costs being claimed by the plaintiff law firm managing the class action were exorbitant and ought to be challenged. Ultimately, George helped convince the Supreme Court that the legal costs being claimed should be reduced, thereby increasing the recovery rate for all plaintiffs, including George’s insurer clients.
- Acting for an uninsured private client in a personal injury claim. The dispute was settled just before a lengthy (and costly) trial on the basis that the client contributes approximately 10% towards the settlement amount, with the other defendant contributing the rest. The client was ecstatic with the outcome.
- Law Institute of Victoria
- Young Insurance Professionals Australia
Insurance | 6 Jul 2021
The Supreme Court of Tasmania has found a landowner (Ms Barrett) liable in both negligence and private nuisance for property damage arising out of the 2013 Forcett/Dunalley bushfire.