Michael Flatley fails to secure injunction preventing insurer from pulling cover for Cork mansion

Policy, which insures Castlehyde House for €30m and costs dancer €5,773 per month, was due to run until November

Dancer Michael Flatley has failed in his High Court action aimed at stopping an insurance company from cancelling its cover for his Co Cork mansion.

The ruling means that Castlehyde House near Fermoy will not have insurance from March 8th next unless Mr Flatley can find another firm to provide cover for the protected structure on the Blackwater river.

Ms Justice Eileen Roberts on Wednesday refused to grant Mr Flatley an injunction to prevent Hiscox Société Anonyme from cancelling the policy. The policy, which the court heard insures Castlehyde for €30 million and costs Mr Flatley €5,773 per month, had been due to run until November.

However, the insurer informed the former Riverdance star of its intention to invoke a cancellation clause on the household policy from next month. The letter gave 30 days’ notice of the cancellation, stating: “It has come to our attention that the occupancy of the household we insure for you appears to now differ from our understanding of same at policy inception and renewal.”


The court heard Mr Flatley, who also has homes in Monaco, Italy and London, used Castlehyde for two to four months a year.

In an affidavit, Mr Flatley said he had been forced to vacate Castlehyde last October and this was communicated to the insurance company via a broker. He said Castlehyde cannot be occupied due to its current condition. He said there was a full-time housekeeper and the gate lodge was also occupied.

Hiscox SA maintained it was not notified that Mr Flatley was not in occupation of Castlehyde when the insurance policy was renewed to run from November last.

Mr Flatley said that if the insurance policy was allowed to be cancelled, Castlehyde House, which dates back to 1790, may be in jeopardy. He also said he doubted that another insurer would take over the cover for Castlehyde House considering the ongoing legal proceedings.

He has already brought proceedings against several parties before the commercial division of the High Court over some €30 million worth of alleged damage caused to the house.

In her judgment on the insurance issue, Ms Justice Roberts said Mr Flatley had not identified any basis or requirement that he is obliged by law or otherwise to maintain a policy of insurance for Castlehyde or that he cannot enjoy the property without this policy remaining in place.

She said he had not established an inability to secure alternative insurance cover for the remainder of the policy. The balance of justice favours refusing the injunction, she said. Mr Flatley will either have to source alternative insurance or remain uninsured for the remainder of the policy period, she said.

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