Firms part of ARP that indemnified solicitor, says bank

Deutsche Bank is suing all 26 insurers involved in the 2008-09 assigned risks pool (ARP) for £1m.

It claims that all insurers involved in the 2008-09 ARP years should pay out for a law firm that the bank successfully sued for negligence.

The High Court writ reveals that Deutsche Bank used conveyancer Cranbrook Solicitors Ltd on two remortgage advances in March 2007.

Cranbrook acted in breach of the trust, causing Deutsche Bank to suffer substantial losses, the writ says.

Deutsche Bank successfully sued Cranbrook in September last year for £986,563, the court papers say. In January, a winding-up order was made against Cranbrook.

The bank claims that Cranbrook was indemnified by ARP insurers and now they should pay out for the judgment.

But, according to the writ, the ARP manager is defending the claim.

“In breach of the ARP policy,” it says, “the ARP manager … has denied that the qualifying insurers are liable to indemnify Cranbrook in respect of its liability pursuant to the judgment, and the ARP manager and/or qualifying insurers have failed and refused to pay to Cranbrook and/or the claimant any sum in respect of its liability.”

The insurers listed include: AG Dore & others; Aspen Insurance UK Ltd; Aviva Professional Risks; Catlin Insurance Company; Chubb Insurance Company of Europe SA; Hiscox Insurance Company; International Insurance Company of Hanover Ltd; Liberty Mutual Insurance Europe Ltd; QBE Insurance (Europe) Ltd; Quinn Direct Insurance; RSA plc; Travelers Insurance Company Ltd; and Zurich Professional & Financial Lines Ltd.

Deutsche Bank had not commented by time of press. ARP manager Capita declined to comment.

● Elite Insurance Company will enter the UK solicitors’ professional indemnity market from this year’s renewal. Elite chief executive Jason Smart said the firm was targeting £3m of premium in the first year from small to mid-sized niche personal injury law firms.