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Gyms could get payouts on business interruption insurance following high court ruling
18 Sep 2020 . BY Tom Walker
It is estimated that hundreds of gym operators, who had to close their doors for four months, are among the 370,000 policyholders who have paid for business interruption protection
Photo: Shutterstock.com/Edvard Nalbantjan
Today’s judgment is a significant step in resolving the uncertainty being faced by policyholders
– Christopher Woolard
Hundreds of thousands of small companies in the UK – including those operating in fitness and leisure – are set to receive payouts on interruption insurance policies, following a high court judgment in a test case brought by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).

The case examined the policy wording of eight major insurers to decide whether or not the COVID-19 pandemic should trigger a business interruption insurance (BI) pay out.

Overseen by Lord Justice Flaux, the review focused on eight insurers – Arch, Argenta, Ecclesiastical, MS Amlin, Hiscox, QBE, RSA and Zurich – and the court’s rulings are expected to apply to nearly 50 insurers, who have sold insurance to 370,000 customers, many of which are small businesses.

Most small and medium-sized (SME) BI policies focus on property damage and only have basic cover for interruptions as a consequence of property damage.

But some policies also cover for BI from other causes, in particular infectious or notifiable diseases (‘disease clauses’) and non-damage denial of access and public authority closures or restrictions (‘denial of access clauses’).

In some cases, insurers have accepted liability under these policies. In other cases, insurers have disputed liability while policyholders considered that it existed, leading to widespread concern about the lack of clarity and certainty.

The FCA sought to provide clarity on the "grey areas" within the disease and/or denial of access clauses – and whether the COVID-19 pandemic should trigger a payout.

In its 150-page judgement, the High Court ruled in favour of the FCA, saying that most, but not all, of the disease clauses provide cover.

"We brought the test case in order to resolve the lack of clarity and certainty that existed for many policyholders making business interruption claims and the wider market," said Christopher Woolard, interim CEO of the FCA.

"We're pleased that the Court has substantially found in favour of the arguments we presented on the majority of the key issues.

"Today’s judgment is a significant step in resolving the uncertainty being faced by policyholders. We are grateful to the court for delivering the judgment quickly and the speed with which it was reached reflects well on all parties.

"Insurers should reflect on the clarity provided here and, irrespective of any possible appeals, consider the steps they can take now to progress claims of the type that the judgment says should be paid.

"They should also communicate directly and quickly with policyholders who have made claims affected by the judgment to explain next steps."

The FCA is now calling on all BI policy holders to follow updates on its dedicated business interruption insurance website (to visit the page, click here), as it is likely that the defendant insurers will appeal the high court judgement.

• To learn more about the hight court judgement, click here.
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PRODUCT NEWS
Gyms could get payouts on business interruption insurance following high court ruling
18 Sep 2020 . BY Tom Walker
It is estimated that hundreds of gym operators, who had to close their doors for four months, are among the 370,000 policyholders who have paid for business interruption protection
Photo: Shutterstock.com/Edvard Nalbantjan
Today’s judgment is a significant step in resolving the uncertainty being faced by policyholders
– Christopher Woolard
Hundreds of thousands of small companies in the UK – including those operating in fitness and leisure – are set to receive payouts on interruption insurance policies, following a high court judgment in a test case brought by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).

The case examined the policy wording of eight major insurers to decide whether or not the COVID-19 pandemic should trigger a business interruption insurance (BI) pay out.

Overseen by Lord Justice Flaux, the review focused on eight insurers – Arch, Argenta, Ecclesiastical, MS Amlin, Hiscox, QBE, RSA and Zurich – and the court’s rulings are expected to apply to nearly 50 insurers, who have sold insurance to 370,000 customers, many of which are small businesses.

Most small and medium-sized (SME) BI policies focus on property damage and only have basic cover for interruptions as a consequence of property damage.

But some policies also cover for BI from other causes, in particular infectious or notifiable diseases (‘disease clauses’) and non-damage denial of access and public authority closures or restrictions (‘denial of access clauses’).

In some cases, insurers have accepted liability under these policies. In other cases, insurers have disputed liability while policyholders considered that it existed, leading to widespread concern about the lack of clarity and certainty.

The FCA sought to provide clarity on the "grey areas" within the disease and/or denial of access clauses – and whether the COVID-19 pandemic should trigger a payout.

In its 150-page judgement, the High Court ruled in favour of the FCA, saying that most, but not all, of the disease clauses provide cover.

"We brought the test case in order to resolve the lack of clarity and certainty that existed for many policyholders making business interruption claims and the wider market," said Christopher Woolard, interim CEO of the FCA.

"We're pleased that the Court has substantially found in favour of the arguments we presented on the majority of the key issues.

"Today’s judgment is a significant step in resolving the uncertainty being faced by policyholders. We are grateful to the court for delivering the judgment quickly and the speed with which it was reached reflects well on all parties.

"Insurers should reflect on the clarity provided here and, irrespective of any possible appeals, consider the steps they can take now to progress claims of the type that the judgment says should be paid.

"They should also communicate directly and quickly with policyholders who have made claims affected by the judgment to explain next steps."

The FCA is now calling on all BI policy holders to follow updates on its dedicated business interruption insurance website (to visit the page, click here), as it is likely that the defendant insurers will appeal the high court judgement.

• To learn more about the hight court judgement, click here.
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Funxtion collaborates with global experts on white paper exploring digital in the future of fitness
In collaboration with ukactive, FunXtion has driven a global discussion with some of the world’s leading fitness operators and influencers, exploring how digitalisation will influence the delivery of fitness services and products moving forwards.
Primal Strength bolsters Scottish expansion with Matrix Fitness distribution win
Matrix Fitness has announced an exclusive partnership with Primal Strength to target an increased strategic focus on the Scottish market.
Anytime Fitness partners with Gympass across UK and Ireland
Anytime Fitness, the UK’s leading 24/7 high-spec gym operator, has partnered with Gympass to give its corporate members access to over 170 clubs across UK and Ireland.
Not all fitness content is equal
With the launch of 22 SERIES, a pioneering, new cardio line powered by iFit® – the world’s leading on-demand fitness streaming platform – Freemotion Fitness aims to change the way we think about – and deliver – fitness content to truly engage members.
Active IQ launches End-point Assessor qualification
Active IQ has launched its Level 3 Award in Understanding the Development and Delivery of End-point Assessment to meet the increasing demands for skilled assessors in this emerging area.
Dr Paul Bedford announces Retention Convention will go virtual for 2020
Global retention expert, Dr Paul Bedford, will host his sixth annual Retention Convention virtually, bringing together global speakers to form a documentary-style event around turning customers into communities.
The Shredquarters partners with Physical Company partners to underpin expansion plans
Functional training gym, The Shredquarters, has moved into franchising, partnering with Physical Company to support its rapid growth.
Converting members in January has never been so simple with Volution’s new Lead Generation tool
Volution – the leading data solutions specialist for the fitness industry – has launched a Lead Generation tool that enables operators to harness the power of mobile technology and cloud-based infrastructure to streamline sales.
Cryotherapy specialists, L&R Kältetechnik, launch new artofcryo.com division
L&R Kältetechnik has launched a new division, named artofcryo.com, after 30 years’ experience with -110 °C electrical solutions.
Club Industry and Sibec unveil Future of Fitness virtual event to help reinvent the fitness industry
The COVID-19 pandemic has temporarily halted opportunities to gather in-person to discuss vital topics relating to the fitness industry’s future.
Core unveils Nautilus fit-out at the largest gym in South-West UK
Core Health & Fitness, an industry leader in commercial fitness products, has revealed a partnership with BodyWorld Plymouth, a newly named Nautilus Trusted Strength Centre.
Core Health & Fitness collaborates with Olympic champion, Dame Kelly Holmes
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COMPANY PROFILES
Technogym

Technogym provides a complete range of best-in-class cardiovascular, strength and functional equip [more...]
+ More profiles  
CATALOGUE GALLERY
+ More catalogues  

VIDEO GALLERY

FreeMotion Fitness - Freemotion FUSION Team Training
The High-Intensity Cardio-Strength Training. Find out more...
+ More videos  

DIRECTORY
+ More directory  
DIARY

 

23-25 Nov 2020

Scotland Reconnect 2020

Virtual Event,
24-25 Nov 2020

Spa Life International (UK)

Virtual Event,
+ More diary  
 


ADVERTISE . CONTACT US

Leisure Media, Portmill House, Portmill Lane,
Hitchin, Hertfordshire SG5 1DJ Tel: +44 (0)1462 431385

©Cybertrek 2020

ABOUT LEISURE MEDIA
LEISURE MEDIA MAGAZINES
LEISURE MEDIA HANDBOOKS
LEISURE MEDIA WEBSITES
LEISURE MEDIA PRODUCT SEARCH
PRINT SUBSCRIPTIONS
FREE DIGITAL SUBSCRIPTIONS