*Delaney v Secretary of State for Transport

Motor insurance – Rights of third parties against insurers. The claimant suffered personal injury as a result of a road traffic accident. The Motor Insurers' Bureau was the insurer of last resort became liable under the Uninsured Drivers' Agreement 1999 (the agreement). The claimant commenced proceedings. The claim was dismissed in the county court on the grounds that the claimant's claim was barred on grounds of public policy and the claimant knew or ought to have known that the vehicle was being used in the course or furtherance of crime, namely the transportation of cannabis for the purpose of subsequent supply, and cl 6(1)(e)(iii) of the agreement was accordingly applicable. The Court of Appeal allowed the claimant's appeal on the ex turpi causa issue on the basis that the joint criminality was only the occasion, and not the cause, of the accident but dismissed it on the cl 6(1)(e)(iii) issue. The claimant issued a new claim for damages arising as a result of the defendant Secretary of State being in breach of art 1(4) of Directive 84/5 (on the approximation of the laws of the Member States relating to insurance against civil liability in respect of the use of motor vehicles) (the second directive). The Queen's Bench Division held that the United Kingdom, in the legal personification of the defendant, was in plain breach of EU law, and the question of liability to pay compensation on principles in Francovich v Italian Republic therefore arose.

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