The Law Lords have given leave for an appeal by Lloyd's syndicate member, Colin Baker, on behalf of himself and other members of Syndicate 947, against rulings in respect of their bid to recover sums said to be owed to syndicate members. Baker and his fellow members sued Black Sea and Baltic General Insurance which, in 1957, agreed to act as the syndicate's "fire and casualty" reinsurers under a continuous contract of reinsurance. In November 1994, the Commercial Court found in favour of Baker and the other syndicate members, but an appeal and cross appeal were launched. Both were dismissed by the Court of Appeal in June last year, but now the matter is to go to the House of Lords. The Equitas group, which was formed for the purpose of reinsuring the liabilities of the syndicate in relation to its non-life business prior to 1992, has indicated that it will petition for leave to intervene.
A witness’s opinion is only admissible with leave from the court, and such leave should only be given if necessary “to furnish the court with scientific information which is likely to be outside the experience and knowledge of a judge [or jury]”. (R v Turner (Terence (1975) cited with approval by Wilberforce LJ in R […]