What was it about? • The Supreme Court gave its view on various business interruption insurance policy clauses. • The case was brought by the FCA (Financial Conduct Authority) on behalf of policyholders as a test case. What did the court say? • The court substantially sided with the FCA (on behalf of policyholders). • It made specific findings about various sample policy clauses, including ‘disease clauses’ - that provide cover where a certain disease occurs within a specific radius of the business premises. • The court did not accept the insurers’ argument that there was not a sufficient connection between the particular case of COVID-19 and the loss, because lockdowns and losses would have been incurred even if there was not a COVID-19 case within the specified radius. • This means cover is likely to be available to a policyholder under a disease clause if it can demonstrate that there had been a single case of COVID-19 within the specified radius before lockdowns/ restrictions were introduced. • A further hearing is likely to be required to agree the precise wording of the court’s determinations summarising its findings, which are intended to be used by insurers and policyholders to assess whether claims are covered.
Briefcase: Quarterly update on key real estate cases including:
- The Financial Conduct Authority v Arch Insurance (UK) Ltd and others  UKSC 1 (Supreme Court)
A testing case about business interruption insurance.
- Faiz and Others v Burnley Borough Council  EWCA Civ 55 (Court of Appeal)
Court waves off waiver arguments in forfeiture dispute.
- Bernel Ltd v Canal and River Trust  EWH
Watercourse rights wash out hampers redevelopment plans.
- Aviva Investors Ground Rent GP Ltd and another v Williams and others  EWCA Civ 27 (Court of Appeal)
Residential lease service charge variation clause survives with modification.
- Fishbourne Developments Limited v Stephens  EWCA Civ 1704 (Court of Appeal)
£1 option to acquire farm at 30% discount not triggered by pitched roof.