The Night Time Industries Association (NTIA) and bars and nightclubs broker NDLM have said they are ‘cautiously optimistic' regarding the Supreme Court's ruling on business insurance.
The Supreme Court Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) appeal case finished last week with a decision yet to be announced. It is understood a judgment could be possible before Christmas but is more likely to be in mid to late January.
A joint statement on behalf of NDML and NTIA said: "As this week's Supreme Court showdown draws to a close, whilst the outcome is far from certain, we believe that there are reasons to be cautiously optimistic on behalf of our clients. It was clear that the judges engaged positively with our policy wording leading us to be guardedly confident that the appeal has viewed the FCA's arguments in a positive light."
"Highlighting how insurers shouldn't ‘cherry-pick' between policies and clauses, we were pleased to see how Mr Edelman QC interrogated the original judgement in order to highlight how wordings such as our own ‘QBE-2' policy should mirror that of the wider result, creating a level playing field in favour of policyholders.
"With the case only just complete, and the ink not yet dry on the court transcripts, there is still a lot to play for. However, the receptive attitude of the judges and their acknowledgement of Mr Edelman's interpretations means that we were far from discouraged in our hope that the Supreme Court will eventually rule in favour of the FCA and our clients."
Several insurers have appealed the decision made in the High Court test case, which ruled in September that Covid-19 claims should be paid in most cases where policies had pandemic or notifiable disease clauses.
Following the government-enforced closure of hospitality businesses in March, insurers denied many insurance claims. In response several action groups were established to appeal the decisions. It was hoped that the High Court ruling would see claims progressed.
It is believed that around 700 types of policies affecting 60 different insurers and 370,000 policyholders could potentially be affected.