I was at the Windstorm Insurance Conference last week during a reception when the very able insurance defense attorney Melissa Sims said to me something about me speaking to a bunch of “pigs.” I have spoken to a lot of different groups, but this seemed a little derogatory about my audience. After a quizzable look, she said, “I got a notice saying you are speaking to the market at PICGS.” Maybe a cocktail or two and aging ears can make “PICGS” sound like “pigs,” but I broadly smiled and said that ‘Steve Badger and I will have a memorable speech at this Lloyds event.’
Lloyds is an important insurance market. Its history, traditions and international role within the insurance community impact the business of insurance so much that the depth of its influence cannot be overstated. When I was a young insurance defense attorney before switching to the policyholder side in 1985, I can remember how excited Paul Butler was to receive a notice via teletype that his insurance law firm was approved to represent Underwriters at Lloyds. Lloyds is different.
The Property Insurance Claims Group (PICG) has this to say about the conference:
The aim of the PICG Conference is to address and discuss salient issues that are relevant to the Property sector both in London and on an international basis and further to provide an educational and networking opportunity for claims practitioners within the Property sector.
The Property Insurance Claims Group (PICG) is a Lloyd’s Market Association (LMA) Claims Committee, providing a representative forum which allows, where appropriate, discussion of common issues and concerns within the property market. The group reports directly to the LMA Claims Committee (LMACC). The Chair of the group for 2020-2022 is Nigel Campbell (Cincinnati Global Underwriting), the Deputy is Gemma Mills (Faraday).
The role of the group is to:
take the lead to identify and investigate property related issues with an objective of producing solutions for the benefit of the Lloyd’s market and the market in general
initiate projects or sub-groups, where appropriate, to address specific issues
advise and provide feedback to the LMACC where property issues have a wider impact on the market.
The presentation is entitled “The 3 Sides to Every CAT Claim – Insurer Attorney, Policyholder Attorney and The TRUTH.” I am certain the format will follow the hugely successful one Steve Badger and I have used when co-presenting. The funny thing is that we normally identify various trends and issues and that while we have differences of views, it is funny to me how much we can agree upon certain principals from those issues. The presentation often have agreed upon conclusions that are not necessarily easy for either the policyholder or the insurance company view.
Two years ago, I gave a speech to the AMICA claims department. It may sound weird that an insurance company would have a policyholder advocate speak, but the claims management from AMICA wanted their adjusters to learn how a policyholder’s attorney viewed obligations of good faith claims handling, what the customer thinks and feels, and what to be concerned about while developing a culture of customer service in the claims department. I enjoyed the experience, the questions, and discussions that followed as well as thanks from the claims managers who must have taken a chance on asking me. Most insurance companies do not let those that sue them into their training centers to teach.
While some of the issues I raised with AMICA’s claims department were quite pointed, there was no bashing by me of the insurance industry or claims adjusters. Why should there be? I believe in the insurance product—I just want to make it better for the customers at the point of the claim. Good and ethical claims adjusters, managers, and those in the industry, including those working with and for various underwriters making up Lloyds certainly want that as well. Claims adjustment conducted properly is not an easy business and that is why high-level educational sessions such as the one I will speak at PICG in London are so important.
This presentation will take place on April 30. I am certain that I will learn a lot from it and will do my best with Steve Badger to make the event entertaining and educational.