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COVID19: Supreme Court backs small firms over business interruption insurance claims

The insurance industry and consumers throughout the UK have been waiting for today’s ruling since the early days of the COVID19 pandemic – the final ruling on the appeal of the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA)’s business interruption case. The Supreme Court livestreamed its judgement today, substantially allowing the FCA’s and the Hiscox Action Group (HAG)’s appeal and dismissing insurers’ appeals.

Small firms are cheering the Supreme Court ruling that forces insurers to pay out on disputed coronavirus business interruption claims worth at least £1.2bn.

The High Court judgment, handed down in September, was widely seen as supportive for the bulk of the estimated 370,000 companies said to be affected by the dispute but prompted appeals by both sides and today’s judgment should be a massive boost to all businesses adversely affected by Covid19.

HB Accountants’ Director, Karen Chase says “it is still very early days, but let’s hope today’s ruling signals some light at the end of the tunnel for many SMEs”.

Hertfordshire insurance broker, Gareth Waterman, Director at Tollgate Insurance Brokers in Hoddesdon says “The judgement just passed by the Supreme Court was against a limited number of insurers, your Insurer, may not be one of those insurers.  It is still very early to understand how this will affect policyholders and potentially any other insurers that were not on the list.  Each insurers’ Policy Wordings are different and they also differ per trade/business type so there may not be Business Interruption cover for COVID-19 on your policy.  We should all appreciate and understand that insurers may have the right to appeal the recent decision.

While your insurer may not part of this legal action, they have to consider the impact of the judgment across a significant number of policy wordings.  You are entitled to make a claim under the Business Interruption section of your policy and your insurers will review your policy and confirm if you have a valid claim.  We are asking our clients to complete a form which we will forward onto the relevant claims department of their insurer for their consideration

We have made contact with our Insurance Broker Network for guidance on how the insurance market will be dealing with this news and how best to communicate this to our clients. Our clients’ will be the first to know as soon as we have more information.

Please feel free to contact the team here at HB Accountants on 01992 444466.  We’re accountants for business and we’re here to help you grow.

We have been working hard to continue to keep you updated as the Government releases new information and are doing everything we can to support our clients during this uncertain period, please do not hesitate to contact us here if you have any concerns or queries.

Visit our COVID19 Business Hub for more information

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