Claims for damages towards ComparetheMarket on behalf of over 20 million UK home insurance customers – Lexology

London, November 1, 2021 – Home Insurance Consumer Action today filed a class action lawsuit against the companies behind Comparethemarket.com on behalf of over 20 million UK home insurance consumers.

The lawsuit follows on from the Competition and Markets Authority's finding last year that ComparetheMarket violated competition law in relation to its contracts with certain insurers listed on its website, and is based on the allegation that ComparetheMarket's conduct led to higher home insurance prices for all UK consumers.

The lawsuit is based on the CMA's November 2020 decision, which found that the price comparison website ComparetheMarket violated competition law by using extensive most-favored-nation treatment clauses (MFN) in its contracts with 32 home insurers. The illegal broad most favored nation clauses prevented these home insurers from offering consumers lower prices on other price comparison sites. The CMA concluded that ComparetheMarket's behavior affected competition between price comparison websites and between home insurers listing on price comparison websites. The CMA also found that consumers who purchased home insurance through a price comparison website were likely to have paid higher prices due to the actions of ComparetheMarket.

In today's lawsuit, Home Insurance Consumer Action claims that ComparetheMarket's behavior resulted in all home insurance buyers overpaying for their policies, whether those policies were purchased through ComparetheMarket, any other price comparison website, or on other way, such as from an insurer. Currently, she believes it is likely that all home insurance purchases, including renewals, made between October 1, 2015 and October 1 as the claim will progress. ComparetheMarket is currently appealing the CMA's decision and the appeal is pending before the Competition Appeal Tribunal.

Home Insurance Consumer Action, led by Director Kate Wellington, is filing the lawsuit on behalf of consumers today to protect class plaintiffs' right to redress while on appeal. Home Insurance Consumer Action will ask the Competition Appeal Tribunal to suspend its action pending the outcome of ComparetheMarket's appeal.

Kate Wellington, director of Home Insurance Consumer Action Limited, said:

“Price comparison websites should play an important role in helping consumers make informed pricing decisions. Unfortunately, ComparetheMarket's anticompetitive behavior has done the opposite, likely increasing home insurance prices for over 20 million UK consumers. I firmly believe that consumers who overpay should be reimbursed and I am happy to lead this claim. "

Nicola Boyle, partner at Hausfeld law firm who leads the Hausfeld team for Home Insurance Consumer Action Limited, said:

"The competition and market authority has determined that ComparetheMarket is violating competition law and it is right that consumers who have been forced to pay higher prices as a result of this behavior are effectively compensated."

To learn more about the entitlement and to track progress, please visit www.homeinsuranceconsumeraction.co.uk.

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