Research Handbook on International Insurance Law and Regulation
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Research Handbook on International Insurance Law and Regulation

Edited by Julian Burling and Kevin Lazarus

Given its economic importance, insurance is a field that has been underserved as an area of academic study. This detailed book provides much needed coverage of insurance law and regulation in its international context.
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Chapter 9: Choice of Law: New York and English Approaches to Insurance and Reinsurance Contracts

Raymond Cox


Raymond Cox QC 1. INTRODUCTION It seems an appropriate time to consider the laws applied to international insurance and reinsurance business under the conflicts rules of New York and England. The Regulation on the Law Applicable to Contractual Obligations (the Regulation) has recently come into effect in England and makes significant changes to the regime.1 New York law has, since the 1950s, undergone a revolution in approach. London and New York are two of the main international centres for insurance and reinsurance disputes, so there is a good deal of material on which to draw for a comparison of the approach in each jurisdiction. The basic issues faced in each jurisdiction in relation to international disputes are of course largely similar. Should the parties be free to choose the applicable law? How should the applicable law be identified where there has been no choice of law? What limits should there be on party autonomy? However, the context within which each jurisdiction exists is now very different. English rules on the applicable law, once more or less the creature of common law, are now exclusively contained in the civil and commercial field (with a few exceptions) in the Regulation. The Regulation is applicable to all the states of the European Union (EU) and must be capable of being operated by jurisdictions which are widely divergent in their traditions and approaches. The New York rules on applicable law remain almost entirely based on the common law, and have to...

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