The Western Cape High Court will hear Santam’s leave to appeal to the Supreme Court of Appeal on Tuesday.
Santam wants to only pay three months’ business interruption insurance claims to some of its customers who were affected by the lockdown, although the policies state it should be 18 months.
The insurance giant earlier indicated that it only wants to appeal the length of the indemnity period and agreed to three-month interim payments pending the outcome of the appeal. A full bench of the court upheld all respects of Covid-19 business interruption insurance claims by Ma-Afrika Hotels and Stellenbosch Kitchen.
According to Insurance Claims Africa (ICA), Santam has made a number of material concessions in its court papers, including dropping its demand that Ma-Afrika’s Covid-19 claim be settled on a three-month, take-it-or-leave-it basis.
ICA requested Santam last month to consider converting its ‘full and final’ settlement offer to an interim payment of 3 months, leaving the balance of the 18-month policy to be dealt with after the SCA appeal.
Santam also agreed to:
- pay the full costs of the proceedings, as well as its application for leave to appeal, including the costs of three counsel on Ma-Afrika’s side
- include foreign guest income in the quantum calculation as the exclusion of foreign guest income would have reduced the quantum for some of Santam’s policy holders by over 50%.
“While it’s taken a lot of pressure, time, money and effort to get here, we are extremely pleased that our claimants are closer to a fair and reasonable resolution to their business interruption claims,” Ryan Woolley, chief executiver officer (CEO) of Insurance Claims Africa, said in a statement.