Insurance litigation—Austria—Q&A guide [Archived]
Insurance litigation—Austria—Q&A guide [Archived]

The following Dispute Resolution practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Insurance litigation—Austria—Q&A guide [Archived]
  • 1. In what fora are insurance disputes litigated?
  • 2. When do insurance-related causes of action accrue?
  • 3. What preliminary procedural and strategic considerations should be evaluated in insurance litigation?
  • 4. What remedies or damages may apply?
  • 5. Under what circumstances can extracontractual or punitive damages be awarded?
  • 6. What rules govern interpretation of insurance policies?
  • 7. When is an insurance policy provision ambiguous and how are such ambiguities resolved?
  • 8. What are the mechanics of providing notice?
  • 9. What are a policyholder’s notice obligations for a claims-made policy?
  • More...

This Practice Note contains a jurisdiction-specific Q&A guide to insurance litigation in Austria published as part of the Lexology Getting the Deal Through series by Law Business Research (published: December 2019).

Authors: Vavrovsky Heine Marth Rechtsanwalte GmbH—Jan Philipp Meyer; Philipp Strasser

1. In what fora are insurance disputes litigated?

Although in recent years alternative dispute resolution instruments have been promoted by counsellors, the vast majority of liability and cover disputes are tried before civil courts. Depending on the amount at issue, the local district courts will hear cases in which the dispute value does not exceed €15,000, whereas the regional courts are competent when higher amounts are in dispute.

Should one of the parties later file for appeal against a first instance court decision, the appellant may challenge the ruling before the courts of the second and third instance (ie, the Higher Regional Court and the Supreme Court of Justice of the Republic of Austria, respectively).

A number of insurance contracts and conditions contain provisions pertaining to the territorial jurisdiction and even the international jurisdiction, which—if valid and binding—also must be taken into account when assessing the relevant jurisdiction for a claim or its defence, respectively.

Furthermore, insurance disputes may be submitted to arbitration. As Austria has a long-standing tradition as an arbitration hub and offers the necessary instruments and institutional support (ie, the Vienna International Arbitral Centre and the

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