PracticeAccounting FirmsE&Y resists Equitable writ

E&Y resists Equitable writ

Attempts by troubled life insurer Equitable Life to sue its former auditor Ernst & Young could be killed if the Big Four firm succeeds in a bid to quash the writ.

Link: Equitable writ could spell merger disaster

E&Y has applied to the High Court to have the writ, which alleges professional negligence, to be struck out, arguing the claim was without basis.

In a statement, E&Y said: ‘We confirm that we have issued a strike out application which is consistent both with our view that there is no basis for this claim, and with our intention to defend the claim vigorously.’ E&Y was auditor to Equitable from 1991 to 2000, when it was replaced by PricewaterhouseCoopers.

The life insurer issued the writ against E&Y in April this year – at the same time it started proceedings against 15 former board directors.

A spokesman for Equitable said: ‘We are moving ahead with our important claim against the auditors.’

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