Movers should claim interest on delayed business interruption payments

Jan 23 | 2024

According to an article in The Guardian published on 3 January, 2024, one of the world’s largest insurance companies, the QBE Group, has been forced to pay thousands of pounds in interest to small businesses whose COVID insurance payout claims were delayed.

Around 370,000 small businesses made insurance claims after Coronavirus lockdowns left them unable to trade.

The story said that the QBE Group paid over £386,000 to 86 companies in interest resulting from delayed payments.  Some 60 insurers have been accused of unfairly delaying making payouts on Business Interruption policies. Last year the UK’s financial ombudsman ruled that an 8% annual rate of interest should be paid.

The claims were accepted as justified in 2021 when the Supreme Court ruled in policyholders’ favour following an appeal to a test case brought by the Financial Conduct Authority.  If any company still has a claim outstanding they should pursue interest payments as well as the claim itself.

Graham Puddephat, from Gauntlet Group, has been a champion for the moving industry in these types of claims.  He said that most of his clients had already been paid but if anyone was still waiting, this new ruling might help. “Losing the Supreme Court case clearly still rankles with certain insurers. I also know some insurance brokers said Business Interruption claims should never have been paid, but both the FCA and the highest courts in the land agreed with me, payments were due. This year doesn’t bode well for movers, so any monies due might be useful.”