Tuesday 20 March 2018

Action against Quinn auditors to go ahead

Tim Healy

THE administrators of Quinn Insurance are taking steps aimed at securing an urgent hearing of their action against the company’s former auditors.

The action will allege professional negligence against  PricewaterhouseCoopers (PWC) in relation to guarantees given by Quinn Insurance over loans to bankrupt businessman Sean Quinn and his family which allegedly resulted in its collapse.  It is also over issues concerning the adequacy of the company’s reserves.

The President of the High Court, Mr Justice Nicholas Kearns, was told today by Bernard Dunleavy, for the joint administrators, they intended to proceed with their action.  A summons issued against PWC last February had been renewed, would be served soon and his side would then apply to the Commercial Court to have the action fast-tracked.

The Minister for Finance had been informed of the administrators intentions and had raised no objection to the proposed course of action, counsel added.

The collapse of Quinn Insurance is expected to result in some €1.6bn public money being drawn down from the State-backed Insurance Compensation Fund, which has lead to the Government imposing a 2 per cent levy on various insurance policies.

Mr Justice Kearns, having being updated on the proposed action, said he was happy the administrators should proceed as proposed.

Mr Dunleavy, for the administrators, Michael McAteer and Paul McCann, said an opinion concerning the intended action had been sought from two senior counsel - Paul Gallagher and Michael Collins. That and other confidential material was provided to the judge.


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