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Carter v Boehm: facts and context

Pearson, Robin



There is a curious irony in the lawsuit Carter v Boehm. The final decision of the Court of King’s Bench, delivered by Chief Justice Mansfield at Easter 1766, famously articulated the principle of uberrima fides (utmost good faith), which became the standard benchmark for disclosure in modern insurance contracts. Yet the insurance policy and claim from which this ruling derived was anything other than standard, and certainly outside the normal scope of anything covered by the British property insurance industry as it had developed by the middle of the eighteenth century. It is not the purpose of this article to explore the legal points about Carter v Boehm or the ramifications of the decision for modern insurance law.1 However, to understand the ruling, and Mansfield’s comments on the scope and nature of liability and disclosure in insurance contracts, it helps to know the facts and context surrounding the case and the nature of the risk that was insured.


Pearson, R. (2016). Carter v Boehm: facts and context. Insurance Law Journal -Sydney-, 27(2-3), 113-123

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Apr 11, 2016
Publication Date 2016-04
Deposit Date Jun 24, 2016
Publicly Available Date Jun 24, 2016
Journal Insurance law journal
Print ISSN 1030-2379
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 27
Issue 2-3
Pages 113-123
Keywords Carter v Boehm
Public URL
Additional Information This is the author's accepted version of an article published in Insurance law journal, 2016, v.27.


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