Kelly is a Senior Associate in the Melbourne office with a diverse insurance litigation and construction and property risk practice, acting for Australian and international insurers. She has wide-ranging experience advising on policy response and representing insured parties in both litigated and pre-litigated matters, including recovery proceedings.

Kelly has substantial personal injury defence experience in both a WorkCover and Wrongs Act context, having developed an understanding of the Victorian worker’s compensation scheme as a solicitor with a Victorian WorkCover Authority panel firm in her first three years of practice. Since coming to Kennedys, she has consolidated and expanded her personal injury practice to include public liability and WorkCover recovery claims, as well as acting for medical negligence insurers in claims arising in a worker’s compensation environment.

Kelly also act in major property loss and damage claims, including both fire damage defence and construction loss recovery claims.

Over her time at Kennedys, Kelly has developed an interest and substantive practice in construction insurance disputes. Kelly is frequently appointed to act as defence counsel in construction claims, acting for builders, engineers, designers and other construction professionals in relation to both commercial and residential properties and projects. Her practice encompasses defence of both design and construction defects, and complex multi-party disputes. In additional to litigation experience in all Victorian jurisdictions, Kelly has regularly acted for professionals and insured parties based in Tasmania and the Northern Territory.

Kelly is a member of AILA and the Law Institute of Victoria.

Work highlights

  • Successfully negotiating the withdrawal of a Writ issued against a security company following injury sustained by an intoxicated patron, relying on the technical defences of voluntary assumption of risk and ex turpi causa.
  • Convincing a prospective plaintiff not to issue Federal Court proceedings for copyright infringement against a building company, on the basis any infringement had been innocent.
  • Defending a complex multi-defendant personal injury expedited proceeding issued in the Supreme Court involving significant causation and liability issues. The matter ran to judgment and the plaintiff failed against all parties.
  • Convincing a plaintiff to abandon his claim for common law damages after obtaining evidence that he continued to work despite claiming a total incapacity.