Clarence Hotel settles case with insurance broker over business interruption cover

Brushfield Ltd, the hotel's operators, claimed it was entitled to be compensated for losses due to the Covid-19 lockdowns under its insurance policy.
Clarence Hotel settles case with insurance broker over business interruption cover

An action against an insurance broker over business interruption cover has been settled in the Commercial Court.

The operators of Dublin's Clarence Hotel, Brushfield Ltd, part of the Press Up Entertainment Group, had sued Arachas Corporate Brokers Ltd who arranged the hotel's insurance policy with AXA.

Last April, Mr Justice Denis McDonald dismissed the case against AXA. He rejected claims by Brushfield that it was entitled to be compensated for losses due to the Covid-19 lockdowns under its 'Enterprise' insurance policy with AXA.

The judge said he had not been persuaded that cover was available under the specific terms of the AXA policy for losses as a result of the closure of the hotel and its Octagon bar in the wake of Government advice in March 2020.

The case against Arachas had yet to be heard.

Striking out order

On Thursday, Paul McGarry SC, for Brushfield, said the proceedings had been compromised against Arachas and he was seeking an order striking out the case and vacating previous costs and directions orders.

Mr McGarry said all allegations of wrongdoing and professional negligence against Arachas were being withdrawn. The settlement did not involve any payment being made by either party, he said.

Mr Justice McDonald welcomed the settlement and made an order striking out all proceedings.

In a statement afterwards, Arachas chief executive Conor Brennan said his company was proud of its business and reputation.

This was underlined by the successful outcome of the case which had been a "very challenging and stressful time, not just for us, but for Irish brokers around this country, all of us trying to deal with an unprecedented and rapidly changing crisis".

He said Arachas has "worked incredibly hard supporting Irish businesses through the pandemic".

"We have provided innovative and cost-effective insurance solutions to enable clients to continue trading and to re-open safely including businesses in particularly hard-hit sectors such as childcare, hospitality and leisure."

It would continue to work closely with government, insurers, business representative groups and, most importantly, with its clients to secure the best possible outcome even in very challenging circumstances, he said.

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