Business Interruption Insurance and the COVID-19 Pandemic

(2021) 49(1) Australian Business Law Review 73-77

5 Pages Posted: 14 Apr 2021 Last revised: 20 May 2021

See all articles by Samuel Walpole

Samuel Walpole

TC Beirne School of Law

William Isdale

The University of Queensland, T.C. Beirne School of Law

Date Written: December 17, 2020

Abstract

The extent to which business interruption insurance policies respond to the disruption wrought by the COVID-19 pandemic has emerged as a significant legal issue in Australia and overseas. In the first Australian test case – HDI Global Specialty SE v Wonkana No. 3 Pty Ltd [2020] NSWCA 296 – a five-judge bench of the New South Wales Court of Appeal addressed the fact that many Australian policies contain exclusions from cover framed around reference to the now-repealed Quarantine Act 1908 (Cth), which has been replaced by the Biosecurity Act 2015 (Cth). This note highlights key aspects of the reasoning of the members of the Court of Appeal and considers the lessons that emerge from the decision.

Keywords: insurance, business interruption, COVID-19, contractual interpretation

Suggested Citation

Walpole, Samuel and Isdale, William, Business Interruption Insurance and the COVID-19 Pandemic (December 17, 2020). (2021) 49(1) Australian Business Law Review 73-77, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3824760 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3824760

Samuel Walpole (Contact Author)

TC Beirne School of Law ( email )

Australia

William Isdale

The University of Queensland, T.C. Beirne School of Law ( email )

Australia

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