Delivering services to our clients
Our approach to the delivery of services to our clients is driven by a desire to create value for them and to achieve the highest professional standards. We aim to meet these goals in relationships that are fostered by clarity, transparency and a desire for continuous improvement.
- Advising our clients on their insurance needs
- Arranging insurance cover in accordance with their requirements with a single insurer, an insurer with support from other insurers or a panel of insurers we have selected
- Helping our clients with any changes to such insurance cover they wish to make
- Assisting them with claims on insurance policies we have arranged whenever possible.
Occasionally we provide services at the request of our clients that are not regulated by statute, law, regulation or custom because they do not strictly relate to cover provided to an insurance product.
Listening to our clients
We want our clients to let us know what they think of our service. When we receive praise for a job well done or a suggestion that helps us improve our business processes, we will act positively whenever feasible.
The same is true when we fail to reach the standards expected of us by our clients. Complaints may be made orally or in writing and should be directed in the first instance to your usual ORM contact. Clients may expect:
- within seven (7) business days of receipt an acknowledgement of the complaint and be given details of who will be handling the matter. If the complaint should be more properly redirected to another party we will endeavour to identify that party and provide details.
- within twenty-one (21) business days of receipt, be given or sent a progress report, unless the matter has already been resolved, that will include the reasons why we need more time and when we expect to provide our final response.
- receive regular reports thereafter in intervals of twenty-one (21) business days until the matter is resolved.
We strive at all times to conduct our business with utmost good faith and integrity.
We organize and control the internal affairs of our business in a responsible manner and ensure our staff are competent, suitable and under adequate day-to-day supervision.
We maintain a system of internal accounting controls such that our clients’ monies are kept separate from our own.
We endeavour to satisfy the insurance requirements of our clients and to place their interests before all other considerations. Subject to those requirements and interests, we inform our clients of the situation and their options and act upon their written instructions.
In the conduct of business and in the choice of an insurer or service organization, including any with which we, or our affiliates, may be connected, we aim to provide advice objectively and independently in our client’s best interests.
When giving a quotation or indication for a contract of insurance we take due care to ensure its accuracy and that we can place it at the quoted price.
We inform our clients of the name of all insurers with whom a contract of insurance is placed and the premium and other amounts required to be paid following receipt of their instructions. This information, and any change to it, is advised at the earliest opportunity.
Confirmation of cover/policies and other documentation
As soon as is reasonably practicable after we have effected a contract of insurance, we write to our clients with confirmation of the type and outline terms of the insurance that has been arranged.
We liaise with insurers to send our clients, unless one is not required or not to be issued, a formal policy document as soon as possible after the inception of cover. This document sets out the various terms, conditions, warranties and exclusions relating to the cover and should be read carefully and understood.
We recommend and urge our clients to check carefully all confirmations of cover, policies and other documents to ensure they are in accordance with client requirements. If they are not, or if any clarification of any aspect of the cover is required, we must be contacted in writing immediately.
We recommend clients retain all confirmations of coverage and policy documents for as long as a claim is possible under the relevant insurance policies.
Insurance premiums are due at inception. There is no grace period. Insurance premiums not received on or before their due date will result in cancellation of all coverages from the due date. There are no exceptions to this rule.
Credit notes are issued for returns of premium. Credit should not be taken until the item(s) appear(s) on a statement of account. If premiums are financed or paid in installments credits are applied to any outstanding balance in most cases.
If clients wish to make payment by direct transfer to our bank account we will send them the relevant details. Once sent, clients should not accept any amendments to these banking details unless we notify them in writing. Other payments should be sent to the address on our invoice or statement.
For payment, in addition to wire transfer outlined above, we normally accept cheques, cash, postal money orders, and in some cases credit/debit cards. Furthermore, payment can be made by FaxChek© or NetCheck©. FaxChek© will allow us to accept you payment from a cheque faxed to us and NetCheck© will allow us to accept your cheque sent over the World Wide Web/Internet. More information can be obtained on these and other acceptable payment methods from our website. FaxChek© and NetCheck© are copyright of ISC Insurance Services Corporation and used with permission.
If clients wish to avail themselves of premium installment facilities, in certain cases we may be able to make arrangements with a premium finance provider.
Unless otherwise agreed, premiums should always be paid in the currency in which they have been invoiced.
Insurer or reinsurer security
We cannot and do not guarantee the solvency or continuing solvency of any insurer or reinsurer used or their ability to pay in a timely or correct manner and clients should note that the financial position of an insurer or reinsurer can change after cover has incepted.
Claims or return premiums may arise under policies on which one or more insurers or reinsurers sharing the risk become insolvent or is delaying settlements. In these circumstances we cannot and do not accept liability for the uncollected proportion. However, we will help our clients submit a claim for the unpaid sums in a Liquidation, Administration, Receivership, Scheme of Arrangement, Bankruptcy or similar process. Clients may receive part settlement in respect of the amount collected from the solvent and responding insurers or reinsurers, and we may inform clients of the name(s) of the insurer(s) or reinsurer(s) who have not paid and the amount(s) unpaid by them if requested to do so in writing.
In general terms, insurers require immediate notification of any claim or circumstance which may give rise to a claim. Whilst the precise terms of the notification requirements of insurers will be set out in their policy document, it is our practice to advise clients to submit claims or advise details of claims or circumstances immediately. Failure to do so may entitle insurers to deny claims.
If there is any doubt whether a matter constitutes a notifiable claim or circumstances, we should be contacted immediately. Claims can also be reported via our website www.offshorerisk.com.
We may issue credit notes for claims payments made to us by insurers on a client’s behalf. We endeavour to send these without delay.
The method of remuneration for our services to our clients is either in the form of a proportion of the insurance contract premium (known as a commission or brokerage), or a fee or fees, or a combination of both.
We may sometimes in the ordinary course of business also earn income in a number of other ways by providing services to the market or suppliers we deal with on our client’s behalf. The level of our remuneration is determined by the terms of confidential business agreements with them but may be, for example, in the form of management/administrative expenses allowed to us by insurers to cover our costs in administering Binding Authorities or Lineslips, and similar facilities for them or in the form of volume, growth or profitability payments for the performance of general marketing, product development, systems and processing functions and other such services on their behalf.
We may also act as reinsurance brokers and in that capacity may be instructed by insurers subscribing to an insured’s policy to place reinsurance business on their behalf. This is a separate contract with the insurer who is responsible for our remuneration.
In the handling of positive premiums balances or un-cleared funds for our clients, or in the process of collecting claims for them, we may earn interest/investment income or benefit from foreign exchange differentials.
Assignment and subcontracting
In the normal course of operating as international insurers we sometimes ask other entities to assist us in responding to the instructions of our clients or their insurers.
Reminder of the duty of disclosure to insurers and Duty of Utmost Good Faith
It is a legal requirement worldwide that anyone seeking a new policy of insurance or reinsurance or cover for additional risks or renewal under an existing policy must disclose any information that might influence the insurers &/or reinsurers when deciding whether to accept the risk and what the terms and premium should be. Failure to disclose all material facts may entitle insurers and/ or reinsurers to avoid cover from inception and seek repayment of paid claims. If you are in any doubt as to whether information is material, you should disclose it.
Generally speaking, the law deems insurance to be a special class of contract which imposes onerous duties upon prospective Insureds and their Agents, who are obliged to act with utmost good faith towards Insurers at all times. In addition they are obliged to disclose to Insurers, before the contract is concluded, all “material” information known to them. The obligation of disclosure is not limited to material information of which they are aware; it extends to those matters of which they ought to be aware in the ordinary course of their business.
Most insurance law states that all information of every circumstance is material if it would influence the judgement of a prudent insurer in fixing the premium or determining whether he would take the risk.
If there is any breach of the duty to act with utmost good faith or failure to disclose any material fact or information to Insurers, the Insurers may be entitled to avoid the policy of insurance from inception if the breach induced the making of the contract on the relevant terms. In effect, this means they would be entitled to act as if the policy had never existed and to seek recovery of all claims already paid under that policy, although they would be obliged to return the premium in most circumstances. Insurers may also press criminal charges if fraud is suspected or determined.
The duties of utmost good faith and disclosure also apply to the claims process and to any situations or changes in situations between the initial submission to obtain a quotation or premium indication and the inception of the policy and during the policy period in which the Insured is required, under the terms of the policy or otherwise, to provide information to Insurers including the extension or amendment or renewal of any policy.
Our organization is a member of the Fraud Defense Network and we assist in the prosecution of insurance fraud.