Nancy Court of Appeal, 13 September 2017, SCI Navi & others v. Voies Navigables de France (VNF) & others, no. 16/03168

Following damage caused by Navi’s barge, VNF sued Navi and its insurers for payment of € 2.8 million in damages before a French commercial court. The defendants pointed out the existence of an arbitration clause in the insurance contract. Nonetheless, the Court dismissed this procedural objection, noting the lack of probative value of the document and the unenforceability of the arbitration clause to third parties to the insurance contract. Navi appealed the decision. The Court of Appeal declared that the arbitration clause contained in the
insurance contract was attached to the legal action and shall therefore bind the victims who bring an action against the insurers.

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