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The High Court rules against Discovery in a victory for customers

17 Apr 2020

​Liberty is pleased to announce that the High Court of Gauteng has ruled in favour of Liberty, following a court application by Discovery alleging that Liberty’s Wellness Bonus benefit had infringed their Vitality trademarks and that Liberty was competing unlawfully.

The Liberty Wellness Bonus benefit uses clients' wellness data from recognised external wellness programmes, such as Vitality, to create a Liberty Wellness Score, which is then integrated into a competitively priced long-term insurance solution for customers.

The High Court judgement confirmed that Liberty's use of the Discovery and Vitality trademarks and its use of a customer's vitality status for its Wellness Bonus Benefit does not amount to trademark infringement or unlawful competition. It further confirmed that customers’ wellness data belongs to customers, who are free to use their personal information how they wish, and customers should not be unnecessarily hindered in their freedom of commercial choice when it comes to available insurance policy products. Notably the judge found that "Liberty’s conduct is consistent with the prevailing boni mores of South African society and is not wrongful."

Commenting on the favourable High Court judgement, Liberty Executive, David Jewell said, “This judgement is a great victory for our customers as they can derive significant benefits from using their own wellness data. The Liberty Wellness Bonus is a major step forward in the way we seek to reward our clients for living a healthy lifestyle.”

The Discovery application to the High Court was dismissed with costs.

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Liberty Group Limited (Reg. no 1957/002788/06) is a licensed Insurer and an Authorised Financial Services Provider (no 2409).