General insurance pricing practices – FCA publishes final report

The FCA’s final report emerged yesterday (22 September) and focuses on remedies for customer detriment arising from certain of the GI pricing practices it has been investigating in depth since it raised the topic in its 2017/18 Business Plan. The remedies proposed by the FCA include requirements for greater transparency for customers and improved reporting to the regulator. However, the most eye-catching remedy proposed is a ban on “price walking” (charging higher premiums for loyal customers), which the FCA CEO described as “radical” in the media coverage of the report.

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Nuanced outcome to FCA business interruption insurance test case

The Commercial Court gave judgment yesterday in the BI insurance test case initiated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), whose CEO has said that they “are pleased that the Court has substantially found in favour of the arguments we presented on the majority of the key issues”.

The FCA’s aim in taking these proceedings was to secure clarity on behalf of policyholders about how non-damage business interruption insurance policies should respond following the Coronavirus outbreak and the associated operating restrictions. The sheer breadth of the case – eight insurers directly involved, 60 insurers affected, 700 wordings and 370,000 policyholders potentially in scope – suggested from its outset that a binary ‘cover’ or ‘no cover’ outcome looked highly unlikely.

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FAA remedial order nears commencement

In 2017 in Smith v Lancashire the Court of Appeal held that exclusion of a deceased’s co-habiting partner from entitlement to bereavement damages under s1A of the Fatal Accidents Act 1976 breached European Convention rights. That outcome placed the government under an obligation to amend the Act (detailed in this post back in February). This specific and limited change has just moved closer, with the necessary draft order being approved in the House of Lords last week and expected to take effect soon.

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