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A reinsurance policy reflects the complex business relationship between an insurer and its reinsurer. In handling any reinsurance issue, you need a law firm with specialist expertise in reinsurance issues; a firm that understands the unique challenges in a reinsurance relationship, including:

  • The trust placed by the reinsurer in its cedant
  • The sharing of risk (understanding the subtle nuances between treaty and facultative, proportional and excess of loss)
  • The management of claims, when must a reinsurer follow, who has control and how it is exercised
We have many years of experience and deep knowledge of the reinsurance market. We have acted in some of most important cases determining reinsurance principles including:

  • The duty of utmost good faith (the House of Lords in Pan Atlantic v Pine Top and PCW Syndicates)
  • Aggregation (the seminal decision on "event" in Dawson’s Field)
  • Follow settlements
  • Claims control
Our views have been cited with approval in some of the leading reinsurance cases, including by the House of Lords in for example, WASA v Lexington.

We have advised in relation to numerous classes of business and the different facets of the reinsurance market. We draw on our experience both of disputes and of the practicalities of the market in drafting reinsurance policy wordings and in responding to judicial and legislative developments. We have dedicated teams focused upon:

  • Captives
  • ART (including insurance linked securities, sidecars ILWs and collateralised reinsurance).

We also continue to advise the legacy and run-off markets. We have experience in all of the issues and claims that arose from business written right up to the 1990s including long tail asbestos and pollution risks, the LMX Spiral, commutations and the recoverability of commutation payments. We are active participants in the industry body, IRLA (Insurance and Reinsurance Legacy Association) and advise many clients on how best to collect any remaining reinsurance debts.

For more information as to how we can help you to meet your commercial objectives, please speak to Kiran Soar (London) or Jan Heuvels (Hong Kong).

Key contacts