Firstly, check whether you already have insurance (which may come free as an extra with other insurance – for example public liability insurance). If you do have this ‘Before the Event’ (BTE) insurance, ask your insurer for the terms of the policy. If you do not have representation, we can then refer you to solicitors that will be acceptable to your BTE insurer.
If you do not have BTE insurance, it is often advisable to obtain ‘After the Event’ (ATE) insurance, to cover you against the risk of having to pay your opponent’s costs should you lose. If you are seeking funding, your funder will almost always insist on you taking out an ATE insurance policy.
It is also possible to insure your own costs i.e. if you lose the case and therefore do not have an order that your opponent pay your costs, the insurers will pay out. Again, this may be something that a third party litigation funder would insist upon you obtaining.
The insurance premium is calculated according to the risks involved in prosecuting the case. The insurer will want to see:
- A legal opinion (usually from a barrister) that the claim is good
- A breakdown of your solicitor’s likely future costs to trial
- An estimate of your opponent’s likely costs
The premium can be paid over various stages in the litigation. This means that if the case settles well before trial, you will not have paid the entire cost of the premium to cover the whole risk.
It is also possible to defer payment of the premium to the end of the case. In the right circumstances, this could mean no cash outlay on your part (depending on the outcome of the claim or whether the insurer has reinsured their own risk).
At PowerLegal we work closely with the leading broker of ATE policies. The overwhelming benefit of working with a major international insurance broker is that they have their own in-house legally trained assessment team. This means that the chances of the insurer quoting on a case are substantially increased.
To find out how PowerLegal can help you, either call us on 0330 223 4828 or fill in the Enquiry Form.