The government needs to hold an emergency meeting with the insurance industry amid reports that Leisure Insure is departing the Irish insurance market.
Deputy McGrath said the reported departure of Leisure Insure from the Irish market will leave vast swathes of the leisure industry in Ireland unable to secure insurance cover.
“UK-based Leisure Insure are specialists in providing insurance for sport, leisure and entertainment. It is my understanding that that they are in effect the only provider of insurance in Ireland for some parts of the leisure industry. Activities such as paintball, bouncy castles and other inflatables, airsoft sites, outdoor adventure centres and many others are dependent on insurance cover provided through Leisure Insure (with AXA XL typically being the underwriter)”, said Deputy McGrath.
“There have been rumours for some time that Leisure Insure was considering withdrawing from the Irish market but it was expected that existing policyholders would be able to renew their policies. It is now being suggested that Leisure Insure has decided to withdraw completely and not to renew existing policies once they have expired. If this is the case, we are facing a full blown insurance crisis with thousands of jobs immediately on the line.
“The simple fact is that public liability insurance for the leisure industry is not an attractive business. Not one of the main insurers in the Irish market will provide cover to parts of the leisure industry. The failure of the government to implement a relentless programme of insurance reform has led us to this crisis point.
“The government needs to hold an immediate crisis meeting with the insurance industry in light of this decision to find a way of ensuring that viable businesses can continue to access insurance cover at reasonable rates.”