Amendments to the Insurance Code concerning non-pecuniary damages under third-party liability insurance policies

The amendments to the Insurance Code which entered into force on 7 December 2018 provide that the amount of damages in the event of the death of a relative will be determined in accordance with a regulation issued jointly by the Minister of Health and the Minister of Labour and Social Policy. Pending the adoption of the regulation, the explicit rule is that the damages paid out to relatives of the deceased other than his or her parents, spouse of children will not exceed BGN 5, 000. The wording of this provision suggests that it covers the damages in all cases in which a relative has died, including accidents at work, but for this purpose the provision should be included in the Obligations and Contracts Act which contains the general third-party liability rules. The systematic place of the provision in the Insurance Code among the provisions concerning the motor third-party liability insurance implies that the ceilings will apply only to this type of insurance. This leaves a wide range of social relationships outside the scope of the new rules. New legislative amendments will be needed to regulate them or otherwise the solution will be found once again in the case law.