Decision ID: 003502
In March 2008 the 1992 Fund Executive Committee noted that in February 2008 the Court of Appeal in Poitiers had rendered judgements in respect of four claims by estate agents in Vendèe for losses suffered in their activity of seasonal lettings of furnished apartments and villas in the year 2000. It was recalled that three of the claims had been assessed by the 1992 Fund for lower amounts than those claimed and that one of them had been rejected, since in the Fund’s opinion the claimant had not proven any losses. It was also recalled that the Commercial Court in La Roche sur Yon had held, in a judgement rendered in September 2005, that the assessment of the loss could not be made on the basis of the number of property owners’ requests for lettings received by the agent, but that account should also be taken of the number of weeks that the apartments or houses were let. It was also recalled that the Commercial Court had awarded the full claimed amounts to three of the four claimants, and in the case of the claimant whose claim had been rejected by the Fund, the Court had awarded an amount considerably lower than that claimed. The Committee noted that although the issue in all four cases was one of quantum and not the Fund’s admissibility criteria, the Fund had appealed against the judgements, since the Fund’s experts had considered the amounts awarded being unreasonable. The Executive Committee noted that in its judgements the Court of Appeal had stated that the liability of the 1992 Fund according to the 1992 Fund Convention was subsidiary to that of the shipowner according the 1992 Civil Liability Convention and that the Fund could not use as a defence to a legal action for compensation the criteria developed by the Fund in the context of the 1992 Fund Convention that dealt specifically with the creation of the 1992 Fund. It was also noted that in assessing the quantum of the losses the Court of Appeal had disagreed with the method used by the 1992 Fund and had stated that as regards three of the claimants the assessment could not be made on the basis of the number of requests for lettings but on the number of weeks that the apartments or houses were let whereas in respect of the fourth claimant the Court had simply calculated the losses by comparing the sales in 2000 with those in 1999. It was further noted that the Court of Appeal had accepted the quantum assessed by the Fund in respect of one of the claimants and awarded amounts lower than those awarded by the Commercial Court in respect of the other three claimants. The Committee noted that since none of the judgements in which the Court of Appeal had not agreed with the Fund’s assessment raised questions of principle, the Director had decided that the 1992 Fund should not appeal.