“Protect” – a new legislative duty on businesses to take steps to mitigate terrorism risks

This morning, the Home Office published its analysis of the responses to last year’s consultation about the introduction of a new legislative duty – the Protect duty –  to assess and take steps to mitigate the risk of terrorist attacks. The duty would apply to organisations of a certain size and to operators of venue/places to which the public has access. The duty will apply to the private and public sector alike and relevant legislation should be expected in a matter of months.

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Vnuk: legislative change to the scope of motor insurance moves forward again

This first blog of the New Year reports further progress this afternoon in the Commons for Peter Bone MP’s presentation Bill seeking to remove the effects of the Vnuk v Zararovalnica and Lewis v Tindale decisions from English motor insurance law.

The brief debate at today’s Committee Stage ran to around only 30 minutes, following which it was approved without objection or amendment. The points made in today’s debate were, in broad terms, summaries of those aired during a debate in September in Westminster Hall on the effects of these two cases (the transcript of the Westminster Hall debate can be read in full here)

The Motor Vehicles (Compulsory Insurance) Bill now passes to Report Stage before the whole House. We expect that is also likely to be a fairly short discussion and it could take place in the next few weeks.

In closing today, Mr Bone pointed out that his Bill, if it succeeds – which looks increasingly likely – would be the first piece of primary legislation, after the UK’s exit from the EU, to alter an aspect of ‘retained EU law’.

Stakeholders in the motor insurance and motor sports sectors will really not be too interested in whether it is the first, second or third to do that but will simply want to see it take effect ASAP. As the Bill is drafted to commence two months after its Royal Assent, there might be a fair prospect of it taking effect late in the second quarter of this year. In the meantime, please feel free to get in touch if you’d like to discuss the detail of the proposed changes.


Written by Alistair Kinley, Director of Policy and Government Affairs at BLM (alistair.kinley@blmlaw.com)

Motor insurance reform: latest update on the Private Member’s Bill

In the last blog about this topic I explained that the Motor Vehicle (Compulsory Insurance) Bill – which seeks to remove Vnuk liabilities from English road traffic law – had failed to pass its second reading on 22 October. I may previously have been overly-pessimistic about its prospects, because when the Bill was back in the House of Commons on 29 October it succeeded at this re-arranged second reading stage. A very short clip of those proceedings can be downloaded here.

Although it is good to see that it has now progressed a little, it’s still unclear how much further it will go. In the ordinary course of events it would pass to Committee Stage, i.e. scrutiny on a clause-by-clause basis. If adequate time is made available for that then the Bill will have a more realistic chance of being enacted. We will post any further information as soon as it becomes available.


Written by Alistair Kinley, Director of Policy and Government Affairs at BLM (alistair.kinley@blmlaw.com)