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The Influence of Marine Insurance Law on the Legal Development of Life and Fire Insurance in England

Ogis, Sinem

Comparative Studies in the History of Insurance Law / Studien zur vergleichenden Geschichte des Versicherungsrechts, Vol. 4


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About The Author

Sinem Ogis obtained her LL.B. at Yasar University (Izmir, Turkey) in 2013 where she triumphed as third ranked in her Law Faculty. In 2013, she was awarded the Best Student of Yasar University 2013 Prize and a Jean Monnet Scholarship supported by European Union. In 2014, she completed an LL.M. in Maritime Law at the University of Southampton with a dissertation on powerships. From 2015 to 2018, she was a research assistant at the University of Augsburg as part of the ERC-funded project »A Comparative History of Insurance Law in Europe« and wrote her Ph.D.-thesis on the history of English insurance law. Sinem Ogis speaks Turkish, English, Italian and German and she is a qualified lawyer in Turkey.


This book addresses the question whether English insurance law is in its entirety rooted in marine insurance. English literature and case law indeed assert that life and fire insurance are nothing more than offspring of marine insurance. To describe life and fire insurance law as offspring of marine insurance suggests that the legal rules and principles as developed in the context of marine insurance were simply transferred as a whole to life and fire insurance. However, it is possible that the legal development happened differently. There could rather have been a convergence of the different legal regimes. To speak of a gradual convergence suggests that marine insurance law was transposed into life and fire insurance law only where appropriate. By analyzing this research question, the book unfolds the roots of modern insurance business in England as well as the evolution of English insurance law.

Table of Contents

Section Title Page Action Price
Abbreviations 13
Chapter 1: Introduction 17
A. State of Research 17
B. Resarch Question: Offspring or Gradual Convergence? 25
C. Overview 27
Part I: The Historical Development of Insurance 29
Chapter 2: Marine Insurance 31
A. Lombard Street in London 31
B. The First Known Marine Insurance Policies 33
C. The Book of Orders 36
D. The Chamber of Assurances 37
E. An Act Concerning Matters of Insurance Among Merchants 38
F. The Development of Marine Insurance Offices 39
I. Lloyd’s 1688 41
II. Royal Exchange and London Assurance 1720 42
Chapter 3: Life Insurance 45
A. First Known Life Insurance Policies 46
B. Bubble Schemes 49
C. The Development of Life Insurance Offices 52
I. The Society of Assurance of Widows and Orphans 1699 53
II. Amicable Society 1706 54
III. Equitable Society 1762 54
Chapter 4: Fire Insurance 57
A. Barbon’s Fire Office 1667 59
B. Corporation of London 1681 61
C. Hand in Hand Mutual Fire Office 1696 62
Chapter 5: Conclusion 65
Part II: The Doctrinal History of Insurance Law 67
Chapter 6: Essential Elements of Insurance Contracts 69
A. Insured and Insurer 69
I. Development of the terms insured and insurer 69
II. Inserting the name of the insured 72
1. Marine insurance 73
2. Life insurance 75
3. Fire insurance 76
III. Conclusion 76
B. Subject Matter 77
I. Marine insurance 78
II. Life insurance 82
III. Fire insurance 84
IV. Conclusion 86
C. Duration of Insurance 87
I. Marine insurance 87
II. Life insurance 89
III. Fire insurance 91
IV. Conclusion 93
D. Risk 94
I. Defining the risk 94
II. Excluded risks 96
III. The risk of fire in marine insurance 102
IV. Insuring the lives of mariners 106
V. Insuring slaves against the perils of sea 108
VI. Conclusion 113
E. Premium 114
I. Calculating the premium 116
II. Payment of the premium 119
III. Return of the premium 122
F. Conclusion 125
Chapter 7: Insurable Interest 129
A. The Principle of Indemnity 130
B. Marine Insurance 133
I. The position before 1745 133
1. The “lost or not lost” clause 135
2. The “interest or no interest” clause 137
II. The position after 1745 139
III. Who has an insurable interest? 141
IV. The nature of an insurable interest: pecuniary interest 143
C. Life Insurance 144
I. The position before 1774 144
II. The position after 1774 147
1. The 1774 Act and its effect on case law 147
2. The 177 4 Act and its effect on the conditions of insurance offices 149
III. The nature of an insurable interest 150
D. Fire Insurance 152
I. A the 1774 Act n application of to fire insurance? 152
II. The conditions of the insurance offices: “Goods held in trust or commission” 157
E. Conclusion 159
Chapter 8: Warranties 161
A. Warranties and Representations 161
B. Marine Insurance 165
I. Warranty of seaworthiness 166
1. The development of the warranty of seaworthiness 166
2. Is the warranty of seaworthiness a continuing warranty? 168
3. Evidence of seaworthiness or unseaworthiness 169
4. Seaworthiness under time insurance policies 170
II. Warranty of non-deviation 172
1. The development of the implied warranty of non-deviation 172
2. Deviation due to necessity 174
3. The “touch and stay” clause 175
III. Conclusion 178
C. Life Insurance 178
I. Warranty of good health 179
1. The development of the warranty o f good health 179
2. Warranty of good health and insuring the life of a third party 187
3. Is the warranty as to health related habits a continuing warranty? 188
4. Establishing the insured’s state of health 189
II. Altering the insured risk by travel 190
III. Conclusion 192
D. Fire Insurance 193
I. Description and classification of the building and goods 193
II. Proof of loss 195
III. Altering the insured risk 198
1. Altering the structure of a building, its use or the location of goods 198
E. Conclusion 204
Part III: Summary 207
Chapter 9: Summary 209
Archival Sources 215
Other Sources 217
Bibliography 219
Index 241