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Product liability

Chambers has “members who are routinely sought out to defend and pursue complex and high-value claims”, including from the life sciences sector (Chambers UK 2020, Insurance),.

Alistair Schaff QC “Gives thoughtful and realistic assessments of cases and has excellent advocacy skills. “ (Legal 500 UK 2020, Product Liability)

Members of chambers have extensive experience of advisory work and dispute resolution across this important practice area. Members have advised on disputes involving the pharmaceutical and healthcare industries, as well as disputes concerning the construction, energy, shipping and manufacturing industries.

As a leading insurance and reinsurance set, members are regularly involved in liability insurance and reinsurance disputes, including medical negligence and product liability claims. We have advised, and acted in, cases concerning breast cancer, hormone replacement therapy, contraception, anti–psychotic drugs, hip replacements, opioids, and many others.

We are also expert in dealing with the construction of “Bermuda Form” policies in product liability matters affecting the US market.

Our experience in product liability insurance-related claims includes diverse matters involving chemical contamination, asbestos-related diseases and aeroplane engine blades.

Our commercially-focused practice spans contract law and civil wrongs, and includes managing the consequences of ancillary regulatory and criminal proceedings, and any associated breaches of consumer law. Our members have acted in significant group actions and heavyweight commercial claims between insurers.

We give advice to both policyholders and insurers on insurance compliance issues, as well as defensive precautionary improvements, by request, to help ensure proper continuing risk management.

Much of our work in the area is covered by arbitration, and remains confidential; however, signature cases include AstraZeneca insurance v XL Bermuda and Ace Bermuda and Kingspan v Borealis, which was a £100 million product liability and misrepresentation claim brought by various companies in the Kingspan Group.  In the Balmoral Group litigation, members successfully defended a product liability claim exceeding £50 million plus costs.