Suit against lawyer fails


  • Nation
  • Thursday, 17 Jun 2004

BY ZARINAH DAUD

BUTTERWORTH: The Sessions Court dismissed a suit by a 77-year-old man against a senior lawyer for allegedly failing to disburse a RM130,000 compensation from an insurance company following his daughter’s death 21 years ago. 

Judge Zainol Rashid Hussin, in dismissing Chin Kong Chew’s application yesterday, said there were doubts that the plaintiff had appointed N. Shanmugam, of Messrs Shan and Gooi, to handle the accident claims of his daughter, Hung Yu. 

Hung Yu died in a road accident in 1983 when she was 21. 

Chin had alleged in his suit that the RM130,000 was paid out by Commercial Union Assurance (M) Bhd (now known as Aviva Insurance Bhd) to Shanmugam’s legal firm on March 2, 1988, following an out-of-court settlement. 

He named Shanmugam as first defendant and the legal firm as the second defendant. 

In his five-paragraph judgment, the judge said Chin had, on the balance of probability, failed to prove that the insurance company had released the RM130,000. 

“He also failed to prove that the defendants had received the money and that they had failed to hand over the money to him. 

“The plaintiff also failed to prove that he has the right to the money and his application is dismissed with costs.”  

The case attracted the legal fraternity as the Butterworth Sessions Court was packed with lawyers and legal assistants when Zainol Rashid read out his judgement. 

During the trial last month, Chin told the court that he had instructed Shanmugam to act on his behalf following his daughter’s death. 

He said he later found out that the insurance money had been released to the lawyer’s firm in 1988. 

Chin was represented by Raveen Tharan and Paul Raj while V. Arivanandhan appeared for Shanmugam.  

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