Supreme Court to decide next week on Motor Insurers' Bureau appeal on Setanta claims

The Supreme Court will give judgment next week on the Motor Insurers’ Bureau of Ireland’s appeal over decisions it is potentially liable for claims brought against collapsed insurer Setanta, writes Ann O'Loughlin.

A seven-judge court heard the appeal last October and reserved judgment. Judgment is due to be delivered on May 25.

The appeal was brought against a Court of Appeal 2016 judgment rejecting the MIBI’s arguments it should not be held liable. That ruling affects all insurance companies underwriting motor insurance here.

The liquidator of Maltese-registered Setanta, which sold insurance policies exclusively in Ireland before it collapsed in 2014, has determined the cost of claims could run to about €90m with the number of claimants estimated at 1,750.

The MIBI argued, as a result of the appeal court decision, it has been “left captive” with its members obliged to give guarantees even concerning insurers whom they believe will not last. It maintains the State-backed Insurance Compensation Fund should pick up the Setanta bill, as was done in the cases of PMPA and Quinn Insurance.

In opposing the appeal, the Law Society argued that agreements between the MIBI and Government concerning claims related to uninsured drivers envisaged the MIBI would pay out if a member became insolvent.

The MIBI is operated under the terms of a 2009 agreement between the Government and companies underwriting motor insurance in Ireland to deal with claims related to uninsured drivers.

The core issue in the appeal is the interpretation of that agreement. If the court finds the MIBI is liable, it will consider how that impacts on the power of the High Court to approve payments out of the ICF if the High Court believes that is the only way of meeting such claims.


More in this Section

Samaritans to listen for more than 12,500 hours this Christmas

PSNI issue photo of mother who died on family boating holiday

Temperatures to drop as low as -5C tonight

Amnesty to fight order to return ’8th Amendment campaign’ donation to US based foundation


Today's Stories

Hospitals face closure under new targets law

‘This feud is only starting’: 30 pellets left in baby’s leg after shooting

Kelp-harvesting plan to go ahead in Bantry Bay

Cocaine-related overdoses rising, figures show

Lifestyle

No wee feat: Daniel back in the charts with new album this Christmas

The League Of Gentlemen sketch troupe back on TV screens after 15 years

Get ready for the Jedi in latest Star Wars instalment

A heavy burden for such young shoulders caring for parents this Christmas

More From The Irish Examiner