French restaurateur wins lawsuit against insurance firm in a landmark ruling

French restaurant operator Stéphane Manigold has won his lawsuit against insurance company Axa France to cover losses caused by the COVID-19 outbreak.

Stéphane Manigold, the owner of four restaurants in Paris including the 2 Michelin-starred Maison Rostang, sued multinational insurance company Axa to force cover his operating losses following a government order to close bars and restaurants from March 14 to slow the spread of the virus. The Paris Commercial Court ordered the insurance firm to pay 2 months of loss of income and an initial payment of € 45.000 caused by coronavirus in a landmark ruling for operators who have problems with insurance firms around the world. Stéphane Manigold announced his success to all businesses in the food and drink sector with the words ”This is a collective victory.” Insurance firm Axa France says its policy does not cover business disruption caused by the health crisis, but Reuters reported Managing Director Thomas Buberl said on Tuesday the company was seeking an amicable solution and planned to meet the bulk of claims from restaurant owners whose contracts had some ambiguity in them.