Zoe Keith

Partner

Qualifications: LLB (Hons), BA

Industries

Practices

Zoe is a specialist insurance lawyer with particular expertise in public liability and professional indemnity claims. Her clients include major Australian general insurers and Lloyd’s of London syndicates. She regularly advises on the operation of insurance policies and provides risk management advice.

Zoe is driven by service excellence, putting her clients’ needs at the heart of everything she does. Efficient and responsive; Zoe pushes disputes to resolution by prioritising outcomes over the legal process. She seeks commercial and innovative solutions to disputes that take into account both the legal issues and her clients’ internal drivers.

Experience

  • In personal injury proceedings, advocating defence submissions at conferences and mediations against senior counsel for high-value claims including multiple injuries, amputee, PTSD, crushing injuries, dependency claims, nervous shock, child claimants, etc.
  • Defending numerous security companies in claims involving assault and false imprisonment.
  • Acting in all manner of claims arising from property damage, including fire and water damage claims; faulty workmanship, and defective products.
  • Defending builders, plumbers, geotechnical and structural engineers, building surveyors, and design and construct contractors in construction disputes.
  • Acting for real estate agents in relation to all manner of claims from personal injuries sustained at managed properties to claims for economic losses arising from alleged misleading and deceptive conduct.
  • Acting for accountants in relation to numerous claims arising from business and tax advice, preparation of tax returns, and lodgement of company documents.
  • Providing advice on coverage issues arising from natural disasters such as the 2011 Queensland floods and 2014 Hazelwood open-cut mine fire.
  • Defending a nurse and his employer in a Victorian Supreme Court proceeding against allegations he caused the plaintiff to suffer a massive stroke resulting from the negligent insertion of a catheter.
  • Defending a construction company against a claim by a plaintiff impaled on Crown land. The claim raised issues regarding the obligations owed by the State and Committee of Management, and the Road Management Act 2004.
  • Successfully defending an application involving allegations of improper discovery and concealment of documents by James Hardie over many years of dust diseases litigation - Cooke v Bayside Health [2008] VSC 368.
  • Defending a property damage dispute between neighbours involving allegations of poisoning. The plaintiff claimed damages of over $1.4 million but was ultimately awarded only $5000, with Zoe’s client awarded costs.
  • Zoe has also had significant experience acting on behalf of a large self-insured asbestos manufacturer concerning asbestos-related personal injury claims.

Awards and recognition

Doyle's Guide to the Australian Legal Profession
Leading Public & Product Liability Lawyers – Defendant (Victoria) 2020-2021; Leading Professional Indemnity Lawyers (Victoria) 2021

Professional Membership

  • Law Institute of Victoria
  • Australian Insurance Law Association
  • Australian and New Zealand Institute of Insurance and Finance (ANZIIF)
  • Women in Insurance
  • Young Insurance Professionals

Latest thinking

Insurance | 14 Oct 2021

Subrogated recoveries – think twice before agreeing a global settlement!

The Full Court of the Federal Court of Australia has handed down its decision following the appeal of Technology Swiss Pty Ltd v AAI Limited t/as Vero Insurance.