Lemon & Duke pub takes legal action against insurer FBD

Pub is backed by rugby players such as Jamie Heaslip and Sean O’Brien

Former Irish rugby international Sean O’Brien: one of the backers of the Lemon & Duke pub. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/ Inpho

Former Irish rugby international Sean O’Brien: one of the backers of the Lemon & Duke pub. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/ Inpho

 

The company behind Lemon & Duke, a pub in Dublin city centre, has launched a legal action against insurer FBD.

Inn on Hibernian Way Limited, trading as Lemon & Duke, has filed High Court action against its insurer. The company is backed by former and current rugby players such as Jamie Heaslip, Rob Kearney, Dave Kearney and Sean O’Brien. Noel Anderson is the pub’s managing director.

Sources close to the company said it took out business interruption insurance with FBD and alleged that the insurer should have paid out on the policy on the back of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Mr Anderson declined to comment.

It is understood that the company, the directors of which are involved in other pubs such as the Bridge in Ballsbridge, compared policies they had elsewhere to arrive at the conclusion that their policy with FBD should pay out given the closure of the Lemon & Duke outlet.

FBD declined to comment.

Vintners

Donal O’Keeffe, chief executive of the Licensed Vintners Association, could not comment on the legal action in question but spoke generally about the trade’s interaction with insurers.

He told The Irish Times that “it’s clear that every insurer in the State for the licensed trade have taken a decision not to pay out on business interruption and have informed the trade that’s their position.

“Every publican has an individual insurance policy and we’ve no insight into what those policies say but I think it’s clear that many in the licensed trade feel they should be covered and many in the insurance industry feel that they’re not.

“The trade are extremely angry, extremely frustrated and extremely disappointed by the entire insurance sector, they’re the only sector in the economy not helping businesses in trouble.”