Subpoena turnsup heat on Lloyd's

LLOYD'S litigation is building up a head of steam, with several imminent judgments expected as well as Lloyd's chair David Rowland making his first appearance as a witness in a major case affecting all Names.

Rowland will take the stand in the High Court interlocutory hearing of Lloyd's v Clementson, which started on 12 February and is due to run for up to five weeks.

He was subpoenaed last week by lawyers acting for John Clementson, the Name being sued by Lloyd's and the Names group backing him, the Writs Response Group (WRG).

The action is the first test case taken by Lloyd's against a Name over money owed to the Lloyd's Central Fund. The fund makes payments to the market to cover Names' individual losses, and then recoups the cash from individual Names.

Clementson's defence claims both Lloyd's market structure and inter-syndicate reinsurance are anti-competitive under European law.

Meanwhile, the 2,000-strong Merrett Names Association expected judgment this week over an interim payment on a claimed £200 million damages, said Names' solicitor Richard Church, partner at London firm More Fisher Brown.

The interim will be in advance of appeals by former Merrett defendants, including former Lloyd's deputy chair Stephen Merrett and syndicate auditors Ernst & Young, instructing Reynolds Porter Chamberlain and McKenna & Co respectively.

Names won judgment last November.

In addition, the Rose Thomson Young Names Association, instructing Richards Butler, expects judgment on liability later this month after a trial which started last November.