£200 if you pass go...

With thanks to the source, as they say in government, we have received intelligence that Hastings Insurance are approaching claimant’s direct whilst they are in a credit hire vehicle and offering them an ex gratia payment of £200 if they terminate the credit hire contract and use their intervention supplier. I am not sure how they got to a figure of £200. I was reminded of Monopoly but £200 is possibly the start point of the insurers attempt to induce a claimant to breach their contract with the CHO.

We think that there may be issues about the conduct here from an FCA perspective which might merit a complaint being made to the FCA.

There may also be issues from a GDPR perspective which also might merit a complaint to the ICO, something the Forum is set to explore next month.

There are definitely potential issues associated with the insurer inducing an individual to breach a contract with the CHO which might involve satellite litigation although I suspect that is the one least likely to win support from the judiciary and the most likely to set an unhelpful precedent.

The tort of procuring a breach of contract is an accessory liability and depends upon the primary wrong of a third party breaching its contract with the counterpart (CHO). Without there being a primary liability, there can be no accessory liability.

The necessary elements are:

(i) breach of contract between the claimant and a third party;

(ii) an act which amounts to intentional inducement/procurement of the breach; and

(iii) proof that the defendant knew it was inducing/procuring an act that was a breach of contract and that it intended to procure that breach. 

Knowledge includes “reckless indifference”.

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