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Case Details

Case Details
National ID 3K-3-424-701/2016
Member State Lithuania
Common Name link
Decision type Supreme court decision
Decision date 21/10/2016
Court Supreme Court of Lithuania
Subject
Plaintiff A. N.
Defendant “ERGO Insurance SE”
Keywords insurance contract, price, risk, unfair terms

Unfair Contract Terms Directive, RECITALS Unfair Contract Terms Directive, Article 4, 2.

The provision of the car insurance agreement, stating that a car theft with vehicle registration documents remaining inside is a non-insured event, can be considered as an unfair term only in cases when this provision does not influence the premium paid by the consumer.
The plaintiff and the defendant concluded a car insurance agreement under which the plaintiff insured his car with a casco insurance. The agreement stipulated that a car theft with vehicle registration documents remaining inside was a non-insured event.

After a year from the conclusion of the car insurance agreement the car was stolen from a secured parking lot with the vehicle registration documents remaining inside. The plaintiff approached the defendant with a request to compensate his losses due to the car theft, but the defendant considering the above-mentioned provision of the car insurance agreement asserted that a car theft with vehicle registration documents remaining in it is a non-insured event and therefore rejected the request.
The court emphasised that in this case it was necessary to analyse two things. Firstly, whether the plaintiff had an option to choose a different insurance protection, under which theft of a vehicle with its registration documents remaining inside would be an insured event and, secondly, whether the insurance premium payed by the plaintiff was affected by the scope of the insurance protection. If the plaintiff had a possibility to determine the economic benefit of the given insurance plan and select from different types of insurance protection, then this provision would fall outside the scope of Directive 93/13/EEC. If the consumer did not have such a choice, i.e. the provision at hand did not influence the premium paid by the consumer, the provision would have to be considered in the light of Directive 93/13/EEC.
Can the provision of the car insurance agreement, stating that a car theft with vehicle registration documents remaining inside is a non-insured event, be considered as an unfair term?
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The case was referred back to the appellate court in order to analyse and consider whether the premium paid by the plaintiff had any influence to the insurer’s liability established in the insurance agreement.