The English Supreme Court had the following to say regarding the standard insurance policy fraud clause which excludes liability if the insured makes a claim ‘by fraudulent devices’. The court said:

‘The expression is borrowed from a standard clause avoiding contracts of fire insurance which was widely used in the 19th and early 20th Centuries. But it is archaic and hardly describes the problem.’

The standard South Africa multi-peril policy clause refers to ‘fraudulent means and devices’. It is not at all clear what the word ‘devices’ refers to or why it is necessary at all in addition to ‘fraudulent means’.

The case is Versloot Dredging BV v HDI Gerling Industrie Versicherung.