On 4 September, the Irish High Court ordered that the Motor Insurance Bureau of Ireland (MIBI) is liable to pay the outstanding claims of some 1700 claimants of the insolvent motor insurer, Setanta Insurance Company.

However, Insurance Ireland has serious concerns regarding the impact of the decision and fear that it will have severe financial and other implications for the viability of the Irish motor insurance market. Insurance Ireland states that the MIBI’s role is to compensate victims of uninsured drivers rather than intervening where insurers have gone insolvent. As the MIBI is maintained

by levies imposed on motor insurers operating in the Irish market, it is concerned that there will be upward pressure on premiums to fund it and creates a risk that some insurers will exit the Irish market for fear that they will be “in effect, underwriting the least prudent motor insurer in the Irish market”. Welcoming the decision, the Director General of the Law Society of Ireland said the ruling “provides a route to justice for people who have suffered injury and loss” and said he was pleased injured claimants who were in limbo for 17 months now have certainty their claims will be paid.

A link to the Insurance Ireland press release is here.