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Case Law Request from 1896

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Case Law Request from 1896

Postby blackbox2342 » Thu Oct 22, 2015 2:23 pm

Hello All,

I've searched high and low for a transcript of an old case called King -v- Victoria Insurance [1896] A.C. 250

I've got references to this in various cases I've dealt with but can only find commentary on the case itself.

Any help is appreciated.

Thanks in advance!
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Re: Case Law Request from 1896

Postby atticus » Thu Oct 22, 2015 3:04 pm

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Re: Case Law Request from 1896

Postby dls » Fri Oct 23, 2015 3:30 pm

And shortly at a site even nearer . .
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Re: Case Law Request from 1896

Postby dls » Fri Oct 23, 2015 3:55 pm

King -v- The Victoria Insurance Company Limited; PC 20 Mar 1896
References: [1896] UKPC 16, [1896] AC 250, 74 LT 206, 44 WR 592, 65 LJPC 38, 12 TLR 285
Links: Bailii
Coram: Watson, Hobhouse, Davey LL, Sir Richard Couch
Queensland - A cargo of wool was insured 'at and from Townsville to London'. The lighter carrying the cargo to the ship capsized in the harbour. The insurers paid out and, taking an assignment of the action sued the defendant Government. The latter now replied that the insurer had arguably had no obligation to settle the claim, and the assignment of the action had been invalid. The appellant argued, in part, that the loss sued upon was not within the terms of the insurance policy; that the respondent insurers stood in the position of mere strangers making a voluntary payment to the insured and that they had no title which a court, either of law or equity, would have recognised.
Held: 'Legal' choses in action includes both legal and equitable interests in choses in action. The distinction between assignment of an action and subrogation must be kept clear. By subrogation, the insurer stands in the shoes of the insured and enforces its rights in the name of the insured. Subrogation is available if payment has been made honestly and in good faith under a valid policy if intended to be in satisfaction of the obligation to indemnify, notwithstanding that it may subsequently be shown that no such obligation had in fact arisen.

The Board rejected the argument presented. Lord Hobhouse said: 'it is claimed as a matter of positive law that, in order to sue for damage done to insured goods, insurers must shew that if they had disputed their liability the claim of the insured must have been made good against them. If that be good law, the consequence would be that insurers could never admit a claim on which dispute might be raised except at the risk of finding themselves involved in the very dispute they have tried to avoid, by persons who have no interest in that dispute, but who are sued as being the authors of the loss. The proposition is, as their Lordships believe, as novel as it is startling; . . As regards the question whether the loss was or was not within the terms of the policy, their Lordships will make no observation but this, that whatever might have been the result of a dispute between the parties to it, there is nothing to suggest that the claim was not one which the insured might not honestly and reasonably make, or to which the insurers might not honestly and reasonably accede. They will assume, as the Court below has assumed, that the bank could not by the terms of the policy have compelled the insurers to indemnify them. Still if, on a claim being made, the insurers treat it as within the contract, by what right can a stranger say that it is not so? The payment would not be made if no policy existed; and it seems to their Lordships an extravagant thing to say that a payment made under such circumstances is a voluntary payment made by a stranger, and that it would be at least an excess of refinement to hold that it is not a payment on the policy, carrying with it the legal incidents of such a payment. . honestly made by insurers in consequence of a policy granted by them and in satisfaction of a claim by the insured, is a claim made under the policy, which entitles the insurers to the remedies available to the insured.'
This case is cited by: (This list may be incomplete)
Last Update: 23-Oct-15 Ref: 417351
23-Oct-15
Commonwealth, Insurance

See also: http://www.swarb.co.uk/king-v-the-victo ... 0-Mar-1896
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Re: Case Law Request from 1896

Postby blackbox2342 » Thu Dec 10, 2015 12:41 pm

Thank you for the above, this was greatly assistive and puts an interesting spin on the assignment cases that are flying around at present.
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Re: Case Law Request from 1896

Postby atticus » Thu Dec 10, 2015 12:47 pm

Do you mean the cases about assignments of CFAs?

Can you amplify your reference to an interesting spin? I'd be interested to know more.
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Re: Case Law Request from 1896

Postby blackbox2342 » Thu Dec 10, 2015 1:00 pm

atticus wrote:Do you mean the cases about assignments of CFAs?

Can you amplify your reference to an interesting spin? I'd be interested to know more.


The inference in King v Victoria is very much to the effect that the Paying Party has no right to dispute the fact of the assignment.

Whilst I'm not convinced that this is necessarily 'good law' it is an interesting side angle to run in any cases where assignment is raised as an issue.

The problem is that whilst King v Victoria shouldn't be ignored, questions of assignment with a CFA do not have a good history of success (in this context more generally).

Sat awaiting the December 16th Spire Judgment but there are other test cases which are unreported running at the moment which should shed more light in this area.
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Re: Case Law Request from 1896

Postby atticus » Thu Dec 10, 2015 1:35 pm

Thankfully I do not have many CFA cases (maybe 5 in the last 12 years). From a solicitor's point of view, they are a nightmare.

The point is interesting - has the King v Victoria Insurance case been cited in the latest hearings/appeals?
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Re: Case Law Request from 1896

Postby blackbox2342 » Thu Dec 10, 2015 1:48 pm

atticus wrote:Thankfully I do not have many CFA cases (maybe 5 in the last 12 years). From a solicitor's point of view, they are a nightmare.

The point is interesting - has the King v Victoria Insurance case been cited in the latest hearings/appeals?


I concur about CFA cases, I thought the abolition of the recoverability additional liabilities would start to simplify things but alas not so far!

It is well a recited case amongst a few barristers I'm familiar with so I'd be surprised if it doesn't crop out, albeit on many of the cases being heard at present I suspect that it has gone beyond the issue of can the Paying Party challenge the validity of the assignment.

My gut feeling is that Spire will not give a definitive answer as given what I've seen of the test cases there are looking like they will have a different spin altogether.
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