Latest headlines

Sweaty people on itchy sofas sneaks in among big guns

There has been a lot of talk about this case being the blueprint for class actions in the UK and as a result it will rightly be poured over with a fine tooth comb in the legal and insurance press.

The Lawyer – Legal costs emerge as defining issue of 2010’s biggest cases

The Lawyer’s annual preview of the ten cases most likely to make headlines this year declares 2010 will be a ‘barnstormer’ with everything from ‘bank on bank’ spats to Prince Charles sticking his nose into the architecture choices of the Chelsea pensioners. Katy Dowell’s countdown describes how a number of corporates are emerging like wounded animals to try and take a bite out of each other this year but points out that one or two of the state-owned persuasion won’t want to be seen as ‘spending the tax payer’s hard earned cash on lawyers’. However, despite the obvious grandeur of all this post-recession fisticuffs, my eye was drawn straight to number 9 on the list: the most interesting personal injury litigation of 2010 Claire Horwood & Ors v Argos Home Retail Group & Ors, in which more than 4000 people are alleging they suffered dermatological injuries from exposure to Chinese-manufactured leather furniture containing mould inhibitor DMF.

There has been a lot of talk about this case being the blueprint for class actions in the UK and as a result it will rightly be poured over with a fine tooth comb in the legal and insurance press. I wonder if there will be similar claim for plastic seating at football matches; some sort of rash caused by ‘squeaky bum time’.

On a serious note though, I’ve heard that group litigation orders could play into the hands of defendants just as much as the claimant side. Firstly, the claimants may have to accept a tariff of damages – presumably taking the edge off the earnings potential of the very worst injuries and meanwhile, the defendants can process everything in a nice straightforward businesslike way. Hmmm…

About Ralph Savage (137 Articles)
Insurance and legal journalist Ralph Savage has written extensively for the financial and professional services sectors, most notably as News Editor of Post Magazine. He ghost writes regularly on behalf of FTSE 250 CEOs, leading counsel and senior professionals including solicitors, insurers, accountants and brokers.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: