“Any fool can take a risk. A wise man sees the risk worth taking.” Anon
To the Client
Protects your client from adverse costs and own disbursements and where required, counsel’s fees.
Enables the client to identify with certainty the cost of litigation if it is unsuccessful and carry out a proper risk /reward assessment.
Empowers the claimant to contest claims with much wealthier opponents and provides access to justice.
The policy may be used to provide the security required to avoid or defeat an application for security for costs.
To the Practitioner
Raising the possibility of obtaining insurance cover to protect the client against the adverse costs of litigation (where there is a strong case) fulfills the practitioner’s obligations to their client and should be an integral process of any litigator’s own risk management.
Failure to do so raises the risk of a claim from the client if the litigation is ultimately unsuccessful.
Avoid the trap of assuming that the client is sufficiently wealthy not to bother having an ICL policy. It is, after all, their decision.
It is a good discipline to undertake in respect of cases that are considered to be strong. If an ICL policy cannot be obtained for a case, the client has a right to know and is entitled to re-assess his risks of the case based on the reasons for declining the risk.
Having the benefit of an ICL policy should enable a claim that might not have been pursued at all to proceed or to enable a claim to proceed much further than it would otherwise have done – a direct benefit to the practitioner.