Fri 16 Nov 2012 – Catastrophes such as the Thai floods and the Japanese earthquake have shown that claims are becoming more complex, challenging and technical.
In recognition of the changing nature and complexity of claims, claims experts recently gathered at Lloyd’s to witness a mock trial process organised by the Loss Executives Association (LEA). The workshop played-out a complex commercial insurance claim from start to finish, including a mock trial in front of the Honourable Wayne Anderson – US District and State Court Judge (Retired). Leading claims experts worked through a US first party property damage claim involving a major fire at the premises of a fictitious large multi-national manufacturing company. The workshop, which built on a similar event held in Chicago last year, showed how claims work in the real world, with multiple parties and multiple interests at play, says Daniel Millea, attorney with US law firm Zelle Hofmann Voelbel & Mason, and one of the presenters at the event.
In particular the importance of a good claims process to the outcome of a claim was highlighted. “An insurer’s conduct in a complex claim is as much on trial as the technical aspects, and this should be kept in mind throughout the claims process because it can be used against you, ” said Millea. Partnership approach The importance of good communication for achieving the best outcome in complex situations was another key finding says Philip Godwin, senior claims manager at Lloyd’s. “The event reinforced the technical assessment of a claim as the baseline in the claims management process, but it also emphasised the vital aspect of endeavouring to deliver the claims outcome in partnership with the insured, ” he says.
“Consciously investing in managing relationships and the claims process with the insured and all other involved parties in the claims response was the important continuous theme running, ” says Godwin.
Claims transformation The Lloyd’s market’s recognises the need to continually improve claims and loss adjusting excellence and capability in the market, as demonstrated by Lloyd’s Claims Transformation Programme (CTP), says Gillett. Many of the workshop themes were directly aligned to CTP, the vision of which is to enhance both the Lloyd’s market’s reputation for fast and fair claims handling, and the customer experience, says Godwin. “With the Lloyd’s market’s role as the leading specialist insurer on large and complex risks this educational event was a natural and valuable addition to the market’s educational programme, helping strengthen Lloyd’s underwriting and claims proposition, ” says Godwin.
“This was a truly excellent event, providing suggestions and ideas on how to navigate some of the situational challenges faced by insureds and insurers in complex claims scenarios, ” he says.
Shared experience The LEA is a US-based not for profit organisation that educates senior insurance claims practitioners and allied professions through seminars and conferences.
(source: Lloyd’s of London site)