0370 270 6000

already registered?

Please sign in with your existing account details.

need to register?

Register to access exclusive content, sign up to receive our updates and personalise your experience on brownejacobson.com.

Privacy statement - Terms and conditions

Sarwar v Alam, Court of Appeal

25 September 2001
The issues

Costs – funding – BTE policies – enquiries to be made as to sources of funding.

The facts

The Claimant was the passenger in a car driven by the Defendant which collided with another vehicle. The Claimant sued the Defendant using an ATE Policy. Subsequently after the case had finished but before costs had been decided, the Defendant’s Insurers pointed out that their Insured’s BTE Policy would have covered the passenger’s claim. They did this to support their argument that they should not pay the ATE premium. The Courts below agreed finding that it was unreasonable in these circumstances for the Claimant to have taken out the ATE Policy. The Claimant appealed to the Court of Appeal.

The decision

1. The Claimant did not have to use the Defendant’s policy.

2. If Claimant had done so, it would have been using a policy arranged by the Defendant’s Insurers who specifically retained full control of the claim. This was unreasonable.

3. It might have been a different situation if BTE Insurers generally were to finance some transparently independent organisation to handle claims like the Claimant’s and if it were made clear in the policy that this was so.

4. In ordinary circumstances, a Solicitor should use a standard form letter which should invite the Claimant to bring along to the first interview any relevant motor/household insurance policy as well as any stand alone Legal Expenses Insurance Policy which the client or the client’s spouse or partner might have, but proportionality governed everything and no Solicitor was obliged to start on “a treasure hunt”.

5. A Solicitor should also ask his client in the case of passenger claims to obtain if practicable a copy of the driver’s Insurance Policy.

focus on...

Legal updates

Non-payment of insurance premiums during the Coronavirus pandemic

The forced closure of many businesses as a result of the Coronavirus pandemic has had a huge impact on the nation’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP). Recent reports from the Office for National Statistics state that the economy was 25% smaller in April than it was in February this year.

View

Legal updates

Reinstatement for property damage losses – when does it apply?

The Court of Appeal has recently considered the correct test for measuring the indemnity for property damage losses and has provided useful guidance on whether an insured needs to intend to reinstate the property to its pre-loss condition.

View

Legal updates

Coronavirus (COVID-19) insurance considerations

With instances of COVID-19 rapidly increasing throughout the UK, many businesses are considering the options available to limit staff and customer exposure to Coronavirus.

View

Legal updates

Insurance annual review 2019-2020

Welcome to our review of 2019 as we look ahead to what is on the horizon for the insurance sector in 2020.

View

The content on this page is provided for the purposes of general interest and information. It contains only brief summaries of aspects of the subject matter and does not provide comprehensive statements of the law. It does not constitute legal advice and does not provide a substitute for it.

mailing list sign up



Select which mailings you would like to receive from us.

Sign up