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Insurance & Reinsurance

Legal advice for the most significant events impacting insurance and reinsurance

Our insurance & reinsurance practice is recognised internationally as an industry leader. Through our integrated global network of offices, we offer a comprehensive range of dispute resolution, transactional and regulatory legal services to the insurance sector, including insurance and reinsurance companies; policyholders; captives and mutuals; brokers and other intermediaries; managing agencies and MGAs; TPAs and other service providers. Our insurance and reinsurance work is high value, likely to be complex and multi-party, and often international in nature.

What they say about us

Chambers UK 2023: we are "subject matter experts with a wealth of experience" and we have "a strong bench that works seamlessly together, meaning complex work is attended to quickly, thoroughly and effectively."

Legal 500 UK 2023: we "are renowned (and deservedly so) specialists in insurance and reinsurance." We "fight a client’s corner very hard, but not at a disproportionate cost."

What we do in Insurance & Reinsurance

We have a specialist insurance and reinsurance team of 20 partners and more than 40 lawyers. In addition, we have an extensive network of legal contacts, experts and correspondent firms whom we can mobilise, as required, worldwide. We pride ourselves on our in-depth industry knowledge and legal expertise. Several of our partners have worked directly in the insurance industry.

Dispute Resolution

We are motivated by our clients' desire for commercial success and, when necessary, we can and do press litigation to its conclusion, committing whatever resources are required and appropriate to the task. However, our client's aim is usually to achieve a satisfactory negotiated solution, including by using alternative dispute resolution mechanisms, and that is our preferred approach.

We can help with:

  • Casualty (GL, EL, PL/Industrial Risk)
  • Construction
  • Energy (Onshore/Offshore)
  • Financial Institutions (FIPI, D&O)
  • Income protection
  • Legacy (short- and long-tail)
  • Life
  • Management Liability (D&O, Fiduciary Liability)
  • Marine Insurance
  • Medical Expenses
  • Personal Accident
  • Political Risk/Trade Credit
  • Professional Indemnity
  • Property/BI/CBI
  • Reinsurance (traditional, ILW,ILS)
  • Specialty (specie, fine art, jeweller's block, cancellation)
  • TMT/IPR/Cyber risks
  • War & Terrorism

Insurance Transactions and Regulation

The insurance sector increasingly has recognised that specialist corporate and regulatory advice is a necessity in today's competitive, heavily regulated and diverse global markets. HFW responds to that need by offering a team that understands the business of participants in the sector, as well as the commercial imperatives in this regulated – and constantly evolving – market.

Our insurance transactions and regulation team comprises specialists with many years' practice in advising the insurance industry. Our team, headed by Ashwani Kochhar, along with Bob Haken and Will Reddie, has a reputation for delivering results, often in technically challenging circumstances, to the London and international insurance and reinsurance markets. The team works closely with our leading insurance and reinsurance litigation group, which enables clients to benefit from their experience of resolving disputes in the sector.

We can help with:

  • Mergers, Acquisitions and Asset Purchase Transactions
  • Capital and Debt Raising
  • New Product Development and Policy Drafting across all business lines
  • Complex Risk Transfer Transactions
  • Insurance Regulation
  • Commercial Agreements
  • Restructuring and Run-off
  • Life Insurance
  • Tax

Our experience in Insurance & Reinsurance

We provide a comprehensive range of dispute resolution and transactional legal services to the insurance sector. We provide below some examples of our recent work:

Dispute Resolution highlights

  • Advising insurers in relation to coverage issues arising out of the Société Générale problems/employee fraud which cost the bank €5bn.
  • Advising an insurer on its liability for claims made by the investment banks which advised Enron and HealthSouth. The claims totalled US$100m.
  • Advising a property re-insurance pool on compatibility with the EU competition rules, including discussions with the European Commission.
  • Advising an excess layer insurer of a major international broker in respect of that broker’s claims totalling over $100 million arising out of a settlement agreement with US Regulators.

Insurance Transactions and Regulation highlights

  • Mergers and acquisitions involving Lloyd's managing agents, insurance and reinsurance companies (active or in run-off), brokers, captives and mutuals (such as the auction disposal of Jubilee Group Holdings and the acquisitions of HSBC Insurance (UK) Limited and of CFC Underwriting Limited).
  • Capital raisings, including IPOs, such as of Kiln, Omega and Lancashire Holdings, and sidecars (Lancashire's Accordion Re and Catlin's Long Bay).
  • Non-traditional risk transfer, such as insurance-linked securities (Catlin's Bay Haven cat bond), industry loss warranties, adverse development covers (Solicitors Indemnity Fund) and credit risk transfer (Aspen Re's credit insurance and swap of its reinsurance recoverables risk).
  • Regulation, advising on domestic and cross-border regulation at all stages, including location feasibility studies, Lloyd's start-ups, passporting, systems and controls and Solvency II (Canopius' Zurich reinsurance platform).
  • Commercial agreements, such as policy wording review, product development (life and general), retail distribution arrangements and Lloyd's turnkey agreements.
  • Restructuring, insolvency (South of England P&I) and exit solutions, such as portfolio (Part VII) transfers (Domestic and General Life Assurance), and schemes of arrangement (Integer, MAPIC, LIBM and others).

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