Contact Steve Lee or Lee Baughan for further details:
0781 709 2384
0207 977 4800
or contact your Broker Relationship Manager:
07515 065 513
0207 977 4841
07764 928 952
0207 977 4842
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"YOU ARE JUDGED BY THE COMPANY YOU KEEP!"
We have been contacted by a number of brokers asking for advice regarding the utilisation of unrated insurers and the message they should be delivering to their clients.
Miles Smith specialises in difficult high risk business for the UK broking community. We pride ourselves on dealing with ‘A’ rated insurers and Lloyd’s paper to provide solutions for a great variety of industries. Particular attention is given to long-tail liability business in view of our specialisation in “industrial disease risks”. Many of our insurers are called upon 25 years after inception of a contract of insurance, to meet their liabilities on Employers’ Liability under the statutory of provisions, so we have a keen understanding of why this topic is so important to you.
In recent years, under the Passporting Regulations, many non-UK domiciled insurers have been given permission to write these classes, as well as the shorter-tail business for the UK broking community. The net result of this has often been failed insurer after failed insurer, many featuring the same structure and underwriting personalities year after year. The Regulator, Local Authorities and Government, together with our own Trade Bodies, are becoming increasingly agitated by this appalling outcome for the UK Plc.
“Brokers may be held to account if they select unrated insurers - they will need to illustrate that they fully understand the financials and structure of these organisations in order to justify the recommendation of them to customers. Sadly, I conclude that, 'You are judged by the company you keep!' Brokers who fail to have adequate provisions or rules in place to safeguard their company render their own company assets and personal wealth at risk, as well as those of their customers.”
Paul Chainey - Chief Executive Officer Miles Smith Insurance Group
We will endeavour to keep you abreast of any changes that may impact the way in which you conduct this area of your business. The media have highlighted this issue in a number of articles please below for some of this information.
Passported insurer ERIC stops writing business
Insurance Times 6th February 2014 – by Elinor Zuke
Unrated Icelandic insurer European Risk Insurance Company (ERIC) has stopped writing new business, renewals and or increased cover, Insurance Times has learned.
ERIC specialised in liability insurance, including employers’ liability, public and products liability and property owners’ liability in the UK from its Southend-on-Sea office...
Unrated insurers pose legal danger
Insurance Times 5th February 2014 – by Matt Scott and Elinor Zuke
Unrated insurers often offer brokers cheap premium for their hard-pressed clients. But using unrated firms could be in breach of a broker’s duty of care.
Insurance Times has learned that brokers may be unwittingly exposing themselves to potentially costly lawsuits by placing business with insurers without financial ratings.
Although Biba does not state a formal position on whether brokers should use unrated insurers, brokers are being influenced by the last legal advice the trade body book...
White, now Biba chief executive, said in 2011: “We took legal opinions a few years ago about how a broker gets on if he is dealing with an unrated insurer and the legal opinion was that using an unrated insurer and the intermediary’s duty of care in law are not compatible bedfellows.
“We don’t have a position, but the legal position is quite clear. You have a duty to your customer and you have to ask yourself, if the insurer has not got a rating, how am I exercising my duty of care? The legal thinking is that you are not.”
Article from 05/02/2014 issue of the Insurance Times
IBSC to issue guidance on unrated insurers
Insurance Times 5th February 2014 – by Matt Scott
New professionalism council will publish the guidelines in April.
The Insurance Brokers Standards Council (IBSC) is set to issue guidance to brokers on the use of unrated insurers.
IBSC chairman and Seventeen Group managing director Paul Anscombe Insurance Times that the new professionalism council was seeking legal advice on insurer security.
“The IBSC will be focusing on giving guidance to brokers around the complex issues of insurer security,” Anscombe said. “We are specifically taking advice from our legal, financial and regulatory advisers and, as practising brokers ourselves, we will ensure that our guidelines are realistic and practical. Ultimately it is about how best we can serve, inform and protect our clients”...
Can brokers rely on unrated insurers?
Insurance Times 14th January 2014 – by Matt Scott
Insurance Times examines the risks and benefits of dealing with unrated insurers.
Unrated insurers can be a headache for brokers.
On one hand they present a riskier form of cover and there are many examples of unrated insurers collapsing or hastily withdrawing from the UK market. This leaves customers in the lurch and brokers fighting to get claims paid or scrambling to find alternative cover at short notice.
On the other hand, they provide capacity for risks that are difficult to place or that brokers may struggle to find cover for on the open market at an affordable rate.
But the question brokers have to ask themselves is do unrated insurers offer a service that is in the best interest of customers? And is the cover they provide secure enough to deliver when it matters most?...
The unrated insurer dilemma
Insurance Times 25th June 2013 – by Saxon East
Unrated insurer Balva has collapsed. So why exactly do brokers place business with unrated insurers?
Unrated insurers have become a hot topic of debate in the UK insurance market, especially after the collapse of Latvian insurer Balva. But what are the arguments for and against using unrated insurers?
*All articles taken from the Insurance Times website and as such, subscription may be necessary to view
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On Friday 6th December 2013, we will relocate from our present office at 20 Birchin Lane, EC3V to One America Square, EC3N, just some 5 minutes walk from the Lloyd’s Building.
We appointed Maris Interiors LLP, a leading UK workplace consultancy, to handle the office design, move and relocation, due to their extensive and in-depth knowledge in this area and their understanding the Miles Smith Group’s aspirations.
“From the very first meeting, Maris Interiors’ service and commitment to this project has been nothing short of exemplary. Maris have delivered us a design with clean aesthetics, light and transparency. This was very important to Miles Smith - for our employees, our clients and visitors.” – Penny Kidman, Group Operations Director at the Miles Smith Group
The light and bright new office occupies 12,500 sq ft of the 6th floor at One America Square. A new and very exciting chapter for the Miles Smith Insurance Group.
On Friday 6 December 2013 the Miles Smith office in London will be closed due to the relocation. Please bear with us during this period.
Telephone support will be available and do not hesitate to communicate with your usual point of contact by mobile or email.
Our Office will re-open on Monday 9 December 2013 at 09.00 and the address will be:
6th Floor, One America Square, 17 Crosswall, London, EC3N 2LV Tel 020 7977 4800
Looking for new business opportunities ?
Want to increase your hit rate ?
Miles Smith have a new in house facility for contractors insurance. Underwritten by our experienced contractors team and documentation issued in house to ensure a speedy service.
The heavier the risk the more we like it !
Send your enquiries to the London Market Broking today.
The second Miles Smith - London Market Broking, northern region golf day took place on the 13th June at Oulton Hall near Leeds.
On a glorious Yorkshire day (overcast with intermittent showers), 40 devotees of the game of golf took to the Oulton Hall course in high spirits with varying degrees of success.
"The course was in good condition, I would like to praise it"
The winner of the day’s singles competition, Andy May of Marshall Wooldridge, praised the course for its condition. ‘The course was in good condition, I would like to praise it’ he said. His fellow team player and colleague John Goodacre came a very creditable second. Not surprisingly, the team competition was also won by Andy's team, with Stuart Brierley of The Insurance Partnership and Brian Dale (that's me!) of Miles Smith chipping in with the occasional gems.
A very big thank you to all those who participated.
We look forward to hosting, what we hope becomes an annual event, around the same time next year.
Miles Smith International, a recently formed division of the Miles Smith Group, provide solutions for both foreign domiciled and UK Brokers into the Lloyd’s and London market.
Our focus is on
- General Liability
- Professional Indemnity
- Directors and Officers Liability
- Delegated Authorities
We are able to provide assistance on territorial limitations for allowing business to be insured outside that country and which classes are compulsory and can only be written by a domestic carrier.
Global insurance programmes can be arranged either on a ground up or umbrella basis sitting over locally arranged compliant covers
If you would like more information, please contact John Satchwell by email or call 020 7283 0040