(a) State the two reasons that are traditionally given for the legal requirement that a person should have an insurable interest in the thing or event that is insured. Also, discuss whether these two traditional arguments for requiring an insurable interest are still valid today.
(b) In Australia the requirement for insurable interest has been abolished for both non-life and life insurance. Explain why the Australian legislature abolished the requirement in each case.
(c) Michael wishes to effect the following insurance policies. In each case state whether the policies would be valid under current English law, giving reasons for your answer:
(i) a policy on the life of Jack. who owes Michael £100,000;
(ii) a policy on the life of Dan, an odd-job man who from time to time does some work around the house for Michael in exchange for small payments;
(iii) a policy on the life of Michael’s 97-year-old Aunt Florence, who has promised to give Michael £100,000 on her 100th. birthday, provided that Michael is good to her.
(15 marks each)
(a) Explain how a joint insurance differs in nature from a composite insurance, why the distinction is important and how the courts distinguish between a joint and a composite insurance in cases of doubt.
(b) Andrew wishes to buy a retail shop that he has seen. To fund the purchase he applies for a mortgage loan from his bank. The mortgage agreement says that he must fully insure the shop and that the policy must be cover the interest of the bank as well as Andrew’s own interest in the shop. Andrew insures the shop in the joint names of himself and the bank. However, he fails disclose that he was convicted of armed robbery four years ago and has only just been released from prison. A few months later the shop is totally destroyed by fire. When the insurance company learns of Andrew’s conviction they refuse to meet the claim. However, the bank insists that the insurers should pay them £100,000, which is the amount of their mortgage loan to Andrew. Explain the legal position making reference to any appropriate case law.
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