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Baillie v Jackson and Victoria Point Sharks Sporting Club Inc


Mr Baillie was a security officer working at a licensed club during a wedding celebration that turned sour. That evening, he was severely punched resulting in fractures to his cheek.

Mr. Baillie claims the injuries were caused by the negligence of his employer (first defendant) and the licensed club (second defendant). The incident was caught on CCTV which shows two men approaching Mr Baillie, shaking his hand in a friendly manner, and then assaulting him.

Mr Baillie claimed that because there were over 200 people in the club, more than one security guard should have been required, not just himself.

Issues of evidence:

Witnesses described the events of that night differently to Mr Baillie, as did the video surveillance footage, leaving the judge to deem his story un-reliable due to inconsistencies.

Findings:

Mr. Baillie’s argument was based on the proposition that there ought to have been two security officers on duty at the club. The judge did not deem this to be a justifiable reason and stated it would not have made any difference.

There are limits however to the lengths that an employer can go to in order to provide protection for a person working as a security officer, there is of course a duty on the employer to take reasonable care and precautions to minimise the risk of similar incidents. Mr. Baillie’s employer stated he would normally have one security officer per 100 patrons, and it was found that only 80 patrons in the reception and about 40 were in the club at the time.

Key point in this case:

It is reasonable to suggest that a person working as a security officer is exposed to risk of physical confrontation, in particular drunk patrons due to the nature of the work.

There was also proof of previous wedding events with one security officer present. Mr Baillie was monitoring the attacker throughout the evening and was in a position to remove the patron if he believed he was intoxicated to the point he suggested. He did not do so. Mr. Baillie’s claim against his employer and the attacker had failed in this case.

I think I have a worker’s compensation claim, what should I do next?

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Written by Shine Lawyers on November 29, 2018. Last modified: December 12, 2018.

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