Blackburn Rovers Football and Athletic Club Plc v Avon Insurance Plc, Eagle Star Insurance Company Ltd, AGF Insurance Ltd IC Insurance Ltd: ComC 15 Nov 2004

The claimant football club insured its players through the defendants. A footballer injured himself in training and his career was finished. The insurers rejected the claim, and relied upon exception clauses, saying that the true cause was a degenerative condition.
Held: The contract was unfortunately worded, and could best be understood in its commercial sense by omitting surplus words. The result was an exclusion clause protecting the insurers. ‘to give proper effect to the parties’ intentions the reference to arthritic or other degenerative conditions in joints, bones, muscles, tendons or ligaments must be construed as referring to conditions of sufficient severity to be regarded as an illness or an ailment and not to conditions that are merely a reflection of the normal ageing process, or what in another context might be described as ‘ordinary wear and tear’.’
The Hon Mr. Justice Moore-Bick
[2004] EWHC 2625 (Comm)
England and Wales
CitedYorkshire Water Services Ltd v Sun Alliance and London Insurance Plc and Others (1) CA 20-Aug-1996
The court was asked whether the costs of flood alleviation works were recoverable under public liability insurance policies.
Held: A claim for the costs of remedial action taken to mitigate future losses were not covered by the terms of the . .
CitedGan Insurance Co Ltd v Tai Ping Insurance Co Ltd CA 3-Jul-2001
A reinsurance contract which contained a clause which provided that no settlement or compromise of a claim could be made or liability admitted by the insured without the prior approval of the reinsurers. The court considered how the discretion to . .
CitedCornish v The Accident Insurance Co. Ltd CA 1889
A policy covered the insured against accidental death or injury but excluded injuries happening by exposure of the insured to obvious risk of injury. The insured was killed by a train while attempting to cross a railway line in circumstances that . .
CitedFraser v B N Furman (Productions) Ltd CA 1967
The employer’s liability policy contained a condition precedent that the insured should take reasonable precautions to prevent accidents and disease. The company sought to rely upon the clause to avoid liability.
Held: ”Reasonable’ does not . .
CitedGreat North Eastern Railway Ltd v Avon Insurance Plc CA 24-May-2001
It was argued that a particular exception clause should be disregarded altogether because it would deprive the insured of the benefit of one particular head of cover.
Held: The repugnancy doctrine only entitles the court to disregard an . .
CitedMorley and Morley v United Friendly Insurance Plc CA 1993
. .
CitedTor Line AB v Alltrans Group of Canada (The ‘TFL Prosperity’) HL 1984
A roll-on roll-off liner tendered under a charter party did not conform to the description in the contract and the owners relied on a widely drawn exclusion clause.
Held: The owners’ argument failed. A literal interpretation would have . .
CitedJason v Batten (1930) Ltd 1969
The plaintiff suffered a coronary thrombosis partly as the result of an accident caused by the defendant’s negligence and partly as a result of a pre-existing medical condition. He was a market trader, the one man in a one-man business, a limited . .

Cited by:
Appeal fromBlackburn Rovers Football and Athletic Club Plc v Avon Insurance Plc and others CA 20-Apr-2005
Exclusion clause in insurance contract. . .
First hearingBlackburn Rovers Football and Athletic Club Plc v Avon Insurance Plc and others QBD 12-Apr-2006
The claimants sought to claim under an insurance policy with the defendants for the injury suffered in training by a footballer which led to his retirement. The insurers said that the player suffered a pre-existing degenerative condition which was . .

These lists may be incomplete.
Updated: 21 January 2021; Ref: scu.219644