Special Counsel

Thomas Blanch

Thomas (Tom) specialises in dust diseases litigation and advises the Asbestos Injuries Compensation Fund (AICF) with respect to liabilities of former James Hardie companies, Amaca Pty Limited and Amaba Pty Limited, arising predominantly in New South Wales, but also in Queensland, the Australian Capital Territory and Victoria. Tom has also advised Studorp Limited (Studorp) for liabilities arising in New Zealand.

Prior to specialising in dust diseases litigation, Tom advised banks and non-bank lenders involving mortgage recovery matters in New South Wales and Victoria in addition to advising subcontractors in building and construction matters in New South Wales.

Tom has particular expertise in managing matters commenced in the Dust Diseases Tribunal of New South Wales (DDT), which are often run on an expedited timetable and can involve complex and novel issues.

Tom is a trusted advisor of the AICF having acted for the fund since 2015.

Expertise

Tom’s expertise includes:

  • common law claims commenced in the DDT
  • assessment of liability, diagnosis, quantum and apportionment
  • acting in mediations and informal settlement conferences
  • acting in urgent (bedside hearing) matters
  • acting in the DDT and Supreme Court of New South Wales with respect both interlocutory steps and at trial

Recent Projects

  • Advising the AICF on a novel claim involving the loss of the Commonwealth age pension, which had previously not been determined in any Common Law country. This issue was later heard before the High Court of Australia, in separate unrelated proceedings, whose findings confirmed our client’s position.
  • Advising Studorp on developments at common law in New Zealand and the impact with respect to future claims against it under the Accident Compensation Act 2001 (NZ).

Professional Memberships/Accreditation & Activities

  • Member, Law Society of New South Wales

Partner

Louise Cantrill

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