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PiP claims gather momentum

This month we report on how the PiP implants scandal is unfolding, with a €6bn group action marching on in Europe. Back in the UK, there are further repercussions from PII renewal season and some advice for firms looking to sell up and move on…

As autumn arrived this month, news broke that the ongoing battle for up to 400 000 women in the UK and Europe to secure compensation from manufacturer Poly Implant Prothèse (PIP) could have taken a decisive turn. The Independent reported on 14th November how a landmark legal ruling had opened the way for women fitted with the defective implants to be compensated, with 1600 already having received interim payments. According to the paper, the ruling could make TÜV Rheinland - a company which provided safety certificates to PIP, liable for up to €6bn in damages.

The saga has been understandably complex after PIP itself quickly became bankrupt. In January 2012 according to a report in the Financial Times, insurer Allianz said its coverage for the manufacturer was invalid owing to false statements provided by PIP. Reports at the time were that groups would be suing PIP's liquidator for deliberately making false declarations, however now TÜV Rheinland appears to be in the firing line with compensation from any other source seen as highly unlikely.

German company TÜV is reportedly appealing the decision of the French court, while Judgment in a separate criminal action in France against PIP founder Jean-Claude Mas and four colleagues for "aggravated fraud" is expected on 10 December.