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Melissa Joyce

Melissa Joyce has 17 years’ experience as a litigator, having worked in this area since her admission to practice in 2000. She practises in the area of insurance law, torts law (including public liability, compulsory third party motor vehicle claims, medical liability and property damage) and associated civil litigation. She defends litigated and non-litigated personal injury claims and is often required to provide advice on the complex insurance and indemnity arrangements prevalent in the resources, mining and construction industries, and address multi-party disputes in relation to breaches of contract, the enforceability of contractual indemnities and double insurance issues. Ms Joyce also provides advice on insurance policy coverage, risk management and relevant legislative compliance as well as policy interpretation, policy implementation and revision of existing and future contracts. She has experience in travel and tourism litigation and defending class actions from time spent working in England. She managed a class action with over 520 plaintiffs who sustained food poisoning while on holidays and subsequently developed irritable bowel syndrome, chronic fatigue syndrome and psychiatric sequelae. At the same time, she also managed two smaller class actions involving similar injuries. Ms Joyce also acted for insurers underwriting travel and tourism risk in relation to accidents involving tourists being injured while on holidays, including in inappropriately designed swimming pools and climbing onto building structures while intoxicated. She has acted for Western Australian, interstate and overseas insurers, companies, government departments and individuals in relation to their liabilities as tortfeasors, the possibility of recovery from other parties, their ability to transfer losses by relying upon contractual insurance and indemnity arrangements and the assessment of damages. A snapshot of her recent claims includes a range of injuries from whiplash and soft tissue injuries to more complex injuries involving multiple fractures, severe burns requiring skin grafts and plastic surgery, descalping injuries, spinal injuries resulting in significant disabilities including paraplegia and quadriplegia, brain injuries and leg amputations. Ms Joyce has trial experience in the Magistrates, District and Supreme Courts of Western Australia and in the appellate jurisdiction of the Court of Appeal and the High Court of Australia. She has also represented parties appearing at coronial investigations and inquests. She also has trial experience in the English County Courts and the Royal Courts of Justice. Ms Joyce was recognised as one of Australia’s leading insurance lawyers in the 2014, 2015 and 2016 Best Lawyers annual reports published by the Australian Financial Review.
Bio last updated 18 Jul 2017

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