Five clubs in ten years as a professional footballer, and still Cambridge County Court has the effrontery to claim that Darren Bent hasn’t shopped around enough.

When Allianz objected to a £63,000 claim for credit hire fees made on Mr Bent’s behalf by Accident Exchange, he found himself caught up in the ongoing wrangling over whether the level of credit hire fees insurers face is obscene or merely outrageous – see previous Bankstone News reports.

Following a ruling that credit hire should only be available to those unable to afford spot hire rates – among whose number Mr Bent may well not feature – the case was appealed and subsequently sent back to CCC with a view to having a proper look at the reasonableness or otherwise of CH fees.

The court has now decided that “a reasonable person, if spending their own money, should have hired for a rate significantly lower than that charged.” Bent’s lack of reasonableness, was adjudged to have resulted in him paying 30% over the odds, which – with DB9s costing £600 odd quid a day – over 94 days – cost him – or rather Allianz – an extra £20k or thereabouts – i.e. about a third of what he earns a week.

Allianz claims man Marty Saunders professed himself satisfied with the ruling. “This case was always about establishing some clear principles that will assist the industry going forward,” he droned robotically. “This has been achieved.”


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