Ms Alexandra Bösch

Alexandra Bösch

Lawyer biography

Born 1968, lic.iur., Attorney-at-law, Partner

Education and Experience

  • Senior Liability Underwriter (Corporate Customers, International Division) with a leading
  • Swiss Insurance Group (1990/1998)
  • Private Insurance Specialist, Federal Diploma (1995)
  • Legal Studies University of Zurich (1996/2001)
  • Legal Claims Counsel at Swiss Re New Markets (2001/2002)
  • District Court of Meilen (2002/2003)
  • Admitted to the bar (2004)
  • Attorney-at-law with Badertscher Attorneys at Law since 2005; Partner since 2009

Memberships

  • Zurich Bar Association (ZAV)
  • Swiss Bar Association (SAV)
  • Association Suisse des Diplômés en Assurance (ASDA)

Practice areas

  • Insurance law and liability law (incl. social security law)
  • Corporate law and contracts
  • Employment law, staff leasing and recruitment services
  • M&A, financings and IPOs
  • Litigation, mediation and arbitration
  • Private clients (inheritance law and family office)
  • Banking and finance
  • Insolvency and bankruptcy

Publications

Languages

  • German
  • English
  • French

Updates

Company & Commercial

Admissibility of law firms under legal form of corporate bodies
Switzerland | 26 November 2012

The Federal Court recently considered whether non-incorporated law firms are permitted to adopt the legal form of a company limited by shares. The court held that it is the organisational structure of a law firm which is decisive, not its legal form. A law firm constituted as a company limited by shares is admissible, provided that it is fully controlled by its attorneys, thereby granting it institutional independence.

Unlawful refusal to place an item on the agenda for a general meeting
Switzerland | 01 June 2012

The Supreme Court recently commented for the first time on the prerequisites under which a board of directors is obliged to place an item requested by a shareholder on the agenda for a general meeting. The court further dealt with the question of whether a company's articles of association may impose certain restrictions on a board's competence to delegate the management of the company's affairs to third parties.

Supreme Court rules on creditors' rights of inspection
Switzerland | 12 March 2012

A creditor which requires access to the annual accounts and auditor's report of a stock corporation must prove both its position as a creditor and a legitimate interest. Recently, the Supreme Court reconfirmed the existing practice in both doctrine and jurisdiction, and took the opportunity to specify in more detail the criteria to find an interest warranting protection pursuant to the Code of Obligations.

Limitation periods in sales and service contracts
Switzerland | 13 June 2011

The Federal Convention is in the process of revising the regulatory regime in relation to statutory limitations. The revision of the respective legislation will extend the existing one-year period to two or even five years and coordinate the various statutes of limitations. This update examines the key aims of the planned revision.

Supreme Court comments on delegation of management by board of directors
Switzerland | 15 November 2010

In a recent decision the Supreme Court commented on the prerequisites for the delegation of management by boards of directors. A distinction must be made between internal and external corporate acts. While the delegation of powers for internal affairs requires both a provision in the articles of incorporation and a written organisational resolution, powers regarding external acts may be delegated by power of attorney.

Limited liability companies: founders' liability
Switzerland | 04 May 2010

In a recent decision, the Supreme Court had the opportunity to comment on the requirements regarding founders' liability and the calculation method for the respective damages under company law, in particular for a limited liability company. The court held that the common definition of the term 'damages' applied, as opposed to a specific meaning of the term as has been argued for in legal literature.

Insurance

Insurers' contractual obligations in case of fraudulent claims
Switzerland | 25 September 2018

Under the Insurance Contract Act, insurers are not bound by a contract if, for deception purposes, the insured party incorrectly notifies or conceals facts from the insurer which would exclude or reduce the insurer's obligation to provide indemnification. Insurers can therefore refuse payment and withdraw from such contracts. The Federal Supreme Court recently confirmed this to be true even if an insured party does not make false statements directly to the insurer, but rather to a medical doctor who confirms their inability to work.

Right of recourse in insurance law: end of Gini/Durlemann practice
Switzerland | 26 June 2018

The Supreme Court recently abandoned its long-standing practice of restricting recourse under the Gini/Durlemann doctrine, which was first adopted in 1954. The court held that any non-contractual liability falls within the meaning of 'prohibited act', including all facts standardised as hazardous or simple causal liability. Private insurers must therefore be treated the same as social insurance carriers with respect to the causally liable party that causes an accident.

Supreme Court: scope of full and final settlement clause in insurance matters
Switzerland | 27 February 2018

The Supreme Court recently dealt with the scope of a full and final settlement clause in an insurance matter. The decision confirms the rules for interpreting settlement agreements in insurance matters and emphasises the importance of carefully drafting the wording of such agreements if they are intended to be full and final settlement agreements of certain insurance claims.

Is surveillance of insured parties lawful?
Switzerland | 24 October 2017

The European Court of Human Rights recently concluded that Switzerland violated Article 8 of the European Human Rights Convention due to surveillance of an insured party. The case brings uncertainty regarding the extent of observation under Swiss law. Article 8 guarantees the fundamental right to respect private and family life. In its statement, the court held that Swiss federal law offers no precise legal basis for photo and video surveillance of insured parties.

Triggering event for insurance benefits in loss of earnings insurance
Switzerland | 23 May 2017

In the context of loss of earnings insurance, the Federal Supreme Court recently had to decide whether sickness or the inability to work due to the respective sickness constitutes an insured event and therefore triggers the insurer's duty to provide insurance benefits. The court abandoned its existing case law in which it had appraised the sickness as a primary event for the determination of when the insured event had occurred.

Liability for ongoing daily benefits insurance claims under Freedom of Movement Agreement
Switzerland | 24 January 2017

The Federal Supreme Court recently ruled that the regulation in the Freedom of Movement Agreement concerning the liability of new daily benefits insurance for ongoing claims that started before the conclusion of an insurance contract under a previous insurance contract does not breach the prohibition of retroactive coverage according to Article 9 of the Insurance Contract Act.

Partial revision of Federal Act on Insurance Contracts
Switzerland | 27 September 2016

In 2013 the Federal Parliament rejected a bill for a total revision of the Federal Act on Insurance Contracts, with an order to the Federal Council to elaborate a partial revision on selected subjects. In its second attempt to adapt the law to existing standards and policyholders' need for reasonable and feasible insurance protection, the Federal Council drafted an amended bill and recently initiated consultation proceedings on the proposals.

Insufficient disclosure of indicating circumstances in insurance contracts
Switzerland | 17 May 2016

The Federal Court has ruled that no or insufficient disclosure of indicating circumstances by an insured party falls under Article 6 of the Insurance Contract Act if this information was relevant in determining the probability of the risk which later was realised and caused damage. Further, the court held that the insurer is freed from its contractual payment obligation if it terminated the insurance contract within the required time.

Supreme Court rules on liability policies and claims-made principle
Switzerland | 19 January 2016

The Federal Supreme Court recently rendered a rare judgment on the temporal scope of liability policies and the claims-made principle. Although it may lead to a broader scope of covered claims, the decision should be seen in a positive light, as it brings additional clarity with regard to the interpretation of claims-made clauses in insurance policies.

Amended rules on insurance supervision
Switzerland | 13 October 2015

The need for further revision to the Insurance Supervisory Law has been revealed through the introduction of risk-based solvency measuring methods, including the Swiss Solvency Test. The establishment of the test as the sole instrument for testing solvency and a focus on Solvency II will result in harmonisation, while revisions to the Insurance Supervisory Ordinance should see increased reporting efforts.

Nanotechnology – can insurance play a role in regulation?
Switzerland | 16 June 2015

As highly qualified specialists in risk assessment, reinsurers deal with nanotechnology as an emerging risk. The small amount of available data regarding nanoparticles complicates insurers' risk assessments and has led to calls for future-oriented coping strategies that identify, record and analyse risks and implement appropriate measures. Not all risks are insurable: a risk must be measurable and financially definable to qualify for insurance.

Supreme Court decides on ambiguous clauses in general insurance terms
Switzerland | 24 February 2015

The Federal Supreme Court recently issued a decision on the rule of ambiguity in the context of the interpretation of general insurance terms. The court found that a provision which excludes accidents as a result of the deliberate causation of a crime or offence is neither considered unusual nor ambiguous, and can therefore validly be relied upon by the insurer.

General insurance terms integral to insurance agreement
Switzerland | 28 October 2014

The Federal Supreme Court recently held that general terms and conditions can be validly included in an insurance contract even if no reference is made to a particular version or edition, provided that the reference to the general terms and conditions is made expressly in the application form. In such a case, the general terms and conditions in force at the time of signing of the application will apply.

Insurance fraud through omission – qualified duty to act required
Switzerland | 15 July 2014

The Federal Supreme Court recently quashed a criminal verdict and held that insurance fraud by omission requires a qualified duty of the perpetrator to act. The ruling makes it clear that insurers should enquire regularly into changes in insureds' circumstances. By continuing payment of insurance benefits without enquiry, an insurer cannot hold an insured criminally liable for fraud.

Prescription period for paid sick day allowance clarified
Switzerland | 01 April 2014

A recent Federal Supreme Court case clarified that the general limitation regime applies with regard to the underlying right for loss-of-income insurance, unless a special rule is stipulated. According to the court, the scope of the Insurance Contract Act is limited to individual instalments paid under the insurance contract. The court also defined the point in time at which the limitation period starts running.

FINMA circular on market conduct rules extended to apply to insurers
Switzerland | 19 November 2013

A revised Financial Market Supervisory Authority circular containing rules on market conduct now applies to insurance companies. Insurers must take the organisational measures necessary to fulfil the duties laid down by the circular. While the insurance industry is sceptical, it remains to be seen what the practical impact on insurers will be.

Strict rules for disclosure of risk factors confirmed
Switzerland | 20 August 2013

The Federal Supreme Court recently dismissed the appeal of an insured individual who challenged the rescission of a private insurance contract for misrepresentation. The court confirmed the strict rules for the disclosure of conclusive risk factors when concluding private insurance agreements and outlined the reasons which entitle an insurer to terminate a policy for misrepresentation.

Prescription period clarified for benefits under loss-of-income insurance
Switzerland | 14 May 2013

The Federal Supreme Court recently ruled on the applicable prescription period for loss-of-income insurance. The decision clarifies the prescription period regarding the underlying right for this type of insurance with periodic payments. The draft of the revised Insurance Contracts Act suggests that the prescription period should be amended from two years to five years.

State buildings insurance providers admitted to the private insurance market
Switzerland | 05 February 2013

The Federal Court recently rendered two decisions in favour of state insurers which hold a monopoly. In its leading case, the court ruled that when insuring buildings under state monopoly, state insurer Glarnersach of Glarus Canton may also compete with private insurance companies. In its second decision, the court dismissed a licence challenge by the Swiss Insurance Association and two private insurers.

FINMA opens consultation regarding liquidity requirements of insurance companies
Switzerland | 25 September 2012

The Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority (FINMA) recently published for consultation a draft of its new circular that aims to illustrate in detail the provisions of supervisory law regarding risk management by defining principles for reporting on liquidity. FINMA requires that insurers file a liquidity report covering the points raised and the criteria outlined in the circular at least once a year.