A golden opportunity for the ATE market to innovate

Enrique Gomez Head of ATE DAS UK Group

With the key judgement in the BNM v MGN case not expected until the end of the year, and decisions in the fixed recoverable costs arena not due until 2019, the after-the-event (ATE) insurance sector – already burdened by ever-changing regulation – is playing something of a waiting game. But this could be a golden opportunity for the ATE sector – the chance to take advantage of what might otherwise be a relative lull in activity period to set in motion a time of self-analysis and transformation, to develop plans for what the future of ATE insurance will look like.

July 16th, 2018

Litigants in person and legal expenses insurance

Steve Harvey ALP

This article could have been headed ‘The implications of the Barton v Wright Hassall case for LEI’ – and that case is certainly my inspiration. However, the subject has a broader reach than that individual case, thanks to the government’s proposed increase in the small claims court threshold from £1,000 to £5,000 for road traffic accident claims and £2,000 for all other personal injury claims.

July 9th, 2018

Reforming procedures for expert evidence in clinical negligence claims

Amanda Stevens 2

I am delighted have been asked to sit on the core group of industry experts called together by the Civil Justice Council to develop a bespoke process for clinical negligence claims where legal costs can be fixed, for damages claims up to a value of £25,000. It is, of course, not going to be an easy process, but is certainly more achievable than the previous suggestion of Lord Justice Jackson that fixed costs could be applied to all claims up to a value of £250,000.

June 28th, 2018

Evading enforcement by any means necessary

Peter Wood Withers

After 22 years, Mr and Mrs Akhmedov’s marriage came to an end in 2015. This was a marriage like few others, resulting in two children and building up vast wealth, including a plane, a helicopter and a 115m-long super yacht called Luna. Regrettably, the divorce was bitter. Mr Akhmedov fought hard and dirty to avoid having to share any of the family wealth with his wife. The English High Court found that he hid assets in a Bermuda trust with the intention of evading his legal obligations to his wife and even went so far as to invent stories that they had already divorced in Russia, producing forged documents to the court as ‘evidence’.

June 22nd, 2018

Football’s financial fouls

Matthew Pascall 2

As you settle down to watch the action on the field during the World Cup, bear in mind that you will be watching players who, together, are valued at billions of pounds. And whose professional careers are matters of hugely valuable commercial interest to the intermediaries supposed to look after them. Brown bags of money might not change hands at motorway service stations anymore, but transfer disputes involving agents are often the subject of litigation in the courts or, more frequently, in arbitrations. We know because we often insure them.

June 18th, 2018

How the disclosure pilot could curb costs

Caroline Field

The consultation on the new draft rules for disclosure in civil proceedings in England and Wales closed in February. If approved by the Civil Procedure Rule Committee, they will be the subject of a two-year pilot in the Business and Property Courts in London and the regional centres. The proposed reforms were developed in response to concerns expressed by the GC100 (the voice of the general counsel and company secretaries working in the FTSE 100 companies), court users, lawyers and judiciary. For many in the legal profession, access to justice and equality of arms are a key driver to support change. The time-consuming, demanding and expensive nature of the process often deters claimants from pursuing meritorious claims.

June 11th, 2018

Three’s a crowd – who pays?

Matthew Pascall 2

In September 2014 a UKIP MEP, Jane Collins, gave a speech at UKIP’s annual conference slandering three Labour MPs. The following month, a letter of claim on their behalf was sent to Ms Collins. It contained an offer of settlement under which Ms Collins would pay each £10,000 in damages, which they would then pay to charity. UKIP’s National Executive Committee discussed the letter of claim that month and referred Ms Collins to solicitors, RMPI, with whom UKIP had close ties. No settlement having been agreed, in November 2014 the three MPs issued claims against Ms Collins. Temple Legal Protection insured the MPs’ claims.

May 16th, 2018

Effective people = Satisfied customers

Steve Rowley2017

Two of the biggest frustrations for customers is receiving poor service post sale and not being understood. For a business, the hard work shouldn’t stop with securing the client but should continue to ensure that they see your business as a value add. Regardless of which market you’re in, there’s always a great attention to detail in product development, driven through market insight and customer trends. Whilst the ‘tangible asset’ is of course extremely valuable to meeting client needs, often what is overlooked is the ongoing support and guidance that a client needs.

May 1st, 2018

The increasing appetite for third-party funding in Europe

Ross Nicholls

Although investors in common law jurisdictions have for sometime recognised litigation as an asset worth investing in, litigation funding remains less prominent in the civil law jurisdictions of mainland Europe. However, the European appetite is beginning to shift in favour of litigation funding, and many large dedicated funds active in common law jurisdictions such as the US, UK and Australia are starting to provide third-party capital to claimants with strong cases.

April 10th, 2018

The Civil Liability Bill: Are we brave enough to care?


It is time for the insurers’ complaints and claimants’ gloating to cease. Last week, the Civil Liability Bill was introduced into the House of Lords, which promises to “modernise the way the discount rate is set”. With measures including three-yearly reviews and the creation of an independent expert panel to advise on the appropriate rate, the Ministry of Justice has promised that the 100% compensation principle will be supported by the bill.

March 28th, 2018