Covid-19 Business Interruption

We have settled a large volume of business interruption cases to date and continue to progress many more. To date, there have been five approved “test cases” nationally.

Our legal partners have managed half of these test cases. Together with our legal partners, we are working towards four more test cases.

Arbitration Clause

Arbitration Clause is the means by which several insurance companies are keeping the Covid-19 flood gates closed. Most insurance policies feature an arbitration clause. Arbitration Clause typically directs that any dispute in relation to the policy (e.g. rejection of the claim by insurers) must be resolved through private arbitration rather than through the courts system. In place of a judge, the arbitrator adjudicates on the case. An arbitrator is often times a mutually agreed barrister or a retired judge. Arbitration clause ensures that if one claimant wins their case against their insurance company, all other claimants will not benefit from the decision. Because arbitration is a private process, the findings do not set a legal precedent. Arbitration ensures that each claimant must invest heavily to contest a declinature decision. While the arbitration decision is binding on insurers, it typically carries a similar cost exposure to a high court case and is therefore not affordable to most. In the context of Covid-19, where so many claimants are adversely affected by the same declinature decisions, it is troubling that the cost barrier to independent adjudication remains firmly in place.

Test Case Status

A test case status arises where the insurance company agrees to waive the arbitration clause and allows the dispute to be resolved through the courts. The “FBD Test Case” was the first decision of note in Ireland.

The Central Bank’s Business Interruption Supervisory Framework (VIEW HERE) sets out their expectation that an insurance company pays the claimant’s “reasonable costs” associated with test case litigation, even if the insurance company win the court case.

“Test case” status may be applied for where it can be presented that there is a significant public interest in a judicial decision on the claim. Together with our legal partners, we have unparalleled experience in achieving test case status.  If test case status is to be applied for, we must attain the support of multiple clients with the same policy or the same cover in principle.

Our legal partners are comfortable with the process of achieving test case status.

Covid-19 Business Interruption, Paul Greene and Co.

Clients / Policies we seek:

We are glad to review all Business Interruption policies and provide a no-obligation opinion on claim prospects.

There are particular insurance policies where our process has advanced and we are seeking to align numbers behind our claim position. The policies we are actively seeking out are as follows:

  1. RSA (hotel cover – 2 policy variables)
  2. Accelerant Agency UK of behalf of HDI Global SE (a common nightclub policy)
  3. Allianz
  4. Chubb (hotel cover)
  5. Irish Public Body Insurance

We are also keen to speak with clients of the following insurers who will likely have their cover already verified by test cases. On appointment we will quantify your claim and negotiate your settlement terms:

  1. FBD (Vintners Policy)
  2. Optis Insurance (QBE Europe Underwriters)
  3. ERGO Versicherung AG
  4. JRP Insurance Management Ltd
  5. Contessa