Bushfire Litigation

Bushfires devastate communities and Nevin Lenne Gross is committed to supporting these communities in their time of vulnerability. Living regionally, we understand this impact and have a strong and impressive history of supporting communities with bushfire litigation, a history of which we are very proud.


Nevin Lenne Gross’ bushfire litigation history

Nevin Lenne Gross have represented local property owners in three major bushfires; the 1968 Mudgegonga-Dederang bushfire, the 1978 Dederang bushfire and the 2009 Black Saturday bushfire. Some clients had their properties burnt out in all three fires.

The Mudgegonga-Dederang bushfire in 1968 was the first case ever run against the State Electricity Commission in Victoria. Nevin Lenne Gross represented 17 property owners who suffered as a result of the bushfire, which burnt out 33,000 hectares some of which was in the same vicinity as the Black Saturday fire.

Nevin Lenne Gross represented 12 farmers in the 1978 Dederang fire against the State Electricity Commission. The matter was settled in 1983.


Beechworth bushfire

Nevin Lenne Gross acts on behalf of the plaintiffs in a group proceeding, or class action, in the most devastating bushfire in North East Victoria’s history, now known as the Beechworth Black Saturday Bushfire. The bushfire started on 7 February 2009, in the Buckland Gap south of Beechworth. The fire spread south-east toward Myrtleford, before a wind change swept it north-east toward Mudgegonga. Vast areas of public lands were burned, but so was private property, a total of approximately 33,000 hectares. There were two fatalities.

The action was commenced by the plaintiffs on their own behalf as well as hundreds of other persons and entities who have suffered loss of or damage to their properties; some also suffered personal injury. Four defendants named in the proceeding were SPI Electricity Pty Ltd (ACN 064 561 118), Eagle Travel Tower Services Pty Ltd (ACN 070 093 766), The Secretary to the Department of Sustainability and Environment and Parks Victoria.

After a long and hard fight and thorough preparation in anticipation of the biggest litigation and the first electronic trial ever run in North East Victoria, the matter was settled on 5 March 2012 for $32.85 million. The court approval was received on 16 May 2012. You may access copy documentation in relation to this matter at the top right of this page. The group members’ claims are currently being processed.

At Nevin Lenne Gross, our lawyers are local people who are committed to serving our local communities and strongly believe in fighting hard for our clients’ rights and entitlements, as we have done for the past four decades.

To view Bushfire Litigation Fact Sheets please visit the Resources tab and find links under ‘Bushfire Litigation.

For further information regarding bushfire litigation, contact:

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