Every small businesses from restaurants to nightclubs and beauty parlours won the right to insurance payouts on this Friday after Britain’s highest court ruled many policies should cover losses caused by coronavirus and the related lockdown. Some of the leading commercial insurers including Hiscox, QBE, Argenta, RSA, Arch and MS Amlin argued that several policies did not cover widespread disruption after government efforts to curb the virus from the previous March.
However, the Supreme Court of UK unanimously dismissed appeals by the insurers after scrutinizing non-damage insurance policy clauses that mostly cover disease as well as the denial of access to business premises. The Financial Conduct Authority brought the closely-watched test case on behalf of policyholders in the previous June, saying it could affect 370,000 policyholders and 60 insurers, paving the way for an estimated 1.6 billion dollars in claims.
According to the chair of the Professional Association of Self-Caterers UK ,Alistair Handyside, he was delighted by a judgment that would mean survival for many amid a third lockdown. However, some policyholders are weary though. “It would appear we have won another battle this morning 10 months too late,” said Murray Pulman, who runs The Posh Partridge cafe in Dorchester, southwest England. “The war is not over, however,” he said. “Getting payment, compensation and costs… is another whole new fight which begins today.”