THE COSMETIC INSTITUTE PTY LIMITED & ORS
(2017 / 279308)
REPRESENTATIVE ACTION CONCERNING BREAST AUGMENTATION SURGERY PERFORMED ON PATIENTS OF THE COSMETIC INSTITUTE
On 14 September 2017, Ms Rickhuss, Ms Pollock, Ms Bruen, Ms Rowlands and Ms Knowland (plaintiffs) commenced this representative proceeding in the Supreme Court of New South Wales against The Cosmetic Institute Pty Limited (in liquidation), TCI Bondi Pty Limited (in liquidation), The Cosmetic Institute Parramatta Pty Limited (in liquidation), TCI Southport Pty Limited (in liquidation) and Dr Eddy Dona (defendants). The proceeding concerns allegations against the defendants about breast augmentation surgery performed at the defendants’ premises or by surgeons engaged and trained by the defendants (TCI Representative Action). Persons on whose behalf the proceeding has been brought are defined as “group members”.
The allegations are explained in more detail in section 2 of this notice. Section 3 describes who is a group member in the proceeding.
The Supreme Court has ordered that this notice be published for the information of persons who might be group members on whose behalf this representative action is brought and who may be affected by it.
If you think you may be a group member you should read this notice carefully as it may affect your rights. Any questions you have concerning the matters contained in this notice should not be directed to the Court. If there is anything in it that you do not understand, you should seek legal advice.
1. What is a representative proceeding?
A representative proceeding is commonly known as a class action. It is an action that is brought by the plaintiffs on their own behalf and on behalf of group members against the defendants, where the plaintiffs and the group members have similar claims against the defendants.
Group members are bound by any judgment or settlement entered into in the representative proceeding unless they choose not to participate by “opting out” of the proceeding. This means that:
- if the representative action is successful or settles, group members may be eligible for a share of any settlement monies or Court-awarded damages;
- if the representative action is unsuccessful, group members are bound by that result; and
- regardless of the outcome of the representative action, group members will not be able to pursue their claims against the defendants in separate legal proceedings unless they have opted out.
2. What is the TCI Representative Action?
The TCI Representative Action is brought by each of the plaintiffs on their own behalf and on behalf of all persons who are group members as defined in the proceeding.
The plaintiffs claim that in and from 2012, the defendants devised and implemented a system of breast augmentation surgery from facilities in New South Wales, and later, from a facility in Southport, Queensland. The plaintiffs in the TCI Representative Action allege that the defendants were negligent in the design, implementation, performance and marketing of their system of breast augmentation
surgery, including the anaesthesia under which the surgery was performed. The plaintiffs also allege that the defendants’ system of breast augmentation surgery was unsafe and not fit for purpose in contravention of the Australian Consumer Law.
The plaintiffs claim that they and group members have suffered personal injury, loss and damage as a result of undergoing breast augmentation surgery at the defendants’ premises or by surgeons trained by the defendants. They claim that their injury, loss and damage were caused by the defendants’ negligence and contravention of the Australian Consumer Law and that they are therefore entitled to damages.
The group members also include any “legal personal representatives” of the estates of any deceased person who would otherwise have qualified as a group member.
The plaintiffs’ allegations made on their own behalf and on behalf of group members are detailed in the Statement of Claim filed on 14 September 2017. The first to fourth defendants are not defending the allegations in the representative action. No insurer has agreed to indemnify the first to fourth defendants. The fifth defendant denies the allegations and is defending the representative action.
3. Are you a group member?
- Group members are persons who at any time before 15 September 2017:
- had breast augmentation surgery performed by a surgeon employed or otherwise engaged by the defendants at TCI Parramatta, TCI Bondi Junction, TCI Southport, Concord Private Hospital or Holroyd Private Hospital; AND,
- suffered injury as a result of the said breast augmentation surgery, whether it be physical or psychological injury; OR
- are the legal personal representative of the estates of any deceased persons described in (1) AND (2) above.