Credit hire company Helphire and motor insurers are happy with the decisions reached on the cases considered by Oxford County Court last week.
The cases were described by the court as “the latest campaign in the long-running and by now well known contest between the motor insurance industry and credit hire companies”.
Four cases were chosen by the Court of Appeal for resolution and featured delivery charges, engineer charges, impecunious hirers, the length of repairs and the hire of a different type of car to the damaged one.
Charges for delivering hire cars were found to be reasonable only in cases where it was impracticable for the customer to collect the car themselves.
Helphire abandoned its claim for engineers/assessors charges without explanation during the hearing.
It was judged reasonable for motor-ists who are too poor to be able to afford hiring a replacement car at commercial rates to recover the total amount charged by Helphire.
With overrunning repairs, the court held that insurers only had to pay for car hire for the length repairs should reasonably have taken. And in cases where an inferior vehicle to the damaged vehicle was hired, only the commercial cost of hire could be claimed.
Helphire's group legal director, Peter Holding said: “We are pleased that it vindicates our stance and hopefully it will provide the certainty the courts, the insurers and other credit hirers have been waiting for.”
Allianz Cornhill's technical claims manager, Bob Rabbitts, said: “Some important principles have been established which support Allianz Cornhill's approach to credit hire and repair claims.” Allianz was involved in two of the cases heard.
Around 2,000 Helphire cases are still to be resolved. These date from before it joined the Association of British Insurers (ABI) agreement on credit hire in December last year.