Back-to-Basics Workshop - Reinsurance Contract Wordings and Disputes

A step-by-step In-house introduction to the world of reinsurance wordings for executives and lawyers who are new to the industry or would like to refresh their knowledge and skills

Course Overview

Precision at the drafting stage on contracts is paramount to avoiding the frequent and small nuances that can land reinsurance companies in trouble. Ensuring you have a thorough understanding of the common clauses and legal considerations is essential to drafting effective wordings that will protect your organization and mitigate against substantial legal risk.

This workshop includes all the important issues, which need to be taken into consideration at the contract negotiation and drafting phase. The expert faculty will take participants through the wording of the contract clauses, which are most problematic, drawing on their own considerable experience to highlight the pitfalls and challenges that can be avoided through the use of clear and thorough contracts. They will use recent cases and best practice as reference.

Why you should attend

By attending this workshop, you will develop your knowledge and drafting skills in the key areas of reinsurance contract wordings. Topics will include:
  • Nature of a reinsurance contract
  • Incorporation clauses
  • Follow the settlements
  • Claim clauses
  • Choice of law clauses
  • Defining the loss/aggregation clauses
  • Dispute clauses including the Bermuda Form Arbitration Clause
  • Collateral and early termination clauses

Who should attend?

Anyone who is new to the industry or would like to refresh their knowledge of the key legal considerations when drafting useful and effective reinsurance contracts, including:
• Wording technicians
• Reinsurance technicians
• Claims managers
• Wordings specialists
• In-house lawyers
• Lawyers in private practice
• Anyone who is involved in the drafting or implementation of reinsurance wordings

Sample Programme

Introduction to the nature of reinsurance contracts
  • Legal considerations
  • Common clauses
  • Common problems
  • Principles of interpretation
Understanding the incorporation of clauses
  • The law of the underlying insurance contract
  • Ancillary terms
  • The effect of words of incorporation
  • Recent cases
Follow clauses and settlements – avoiding disputes
  • Tension between ‘utmost good faith’ and ‘follow the fortunes’
  • Follow the settlements
  • The position without a follow clause
  • The need to prove underlying liability in fact and law
  • The emasculated follow/clause
  • The development of the follow clauses – does it do what it says?
Claims clauses
  • Types of clause
  • Consequences of breach
  • Remedies
Defining the loss/aggregation clauses
  • Meaning of event, occurrence and related terms
  • Functions of aggregation
  • Key applications of aggregation principles
  • Applications of the relevant text for aggregation of loss
  • Recent cases on aggregation – lessons learnt
Choice of law clauses
  • Rules applicable to choice of law clauses – the Rome Convention
  • Incorporation of choice of law from insurance to reinsurance
  • ‘Floating’ choice of law clauses
  • Choice of law in arbitration
Dispute clauses including the Bermuda Form Arbitration Clause
  • What to do: arbitrate or to litigate
  • Where to do it? Choice of forum/legal seat
  • Holding the ring between competing interests
The hybrid clause – Bermuda Form
  • Honorable engagement clauses. Do they work?
  • Mediation/conciliation
  • Mini-trial
  • Early neutral evaluation
Collateral and early termination clauses
  • Collateralizing of risk
  • Recent significant cases

Recommended Trainer

Professor Robert Merkin is a Professor of Commercial Law at Southampton University and a consultant at Norton Rose. He has written many books on a variety of subjects but is best know for his books and articles on insurance, reinsurance and related matters. His works include Butler and Merkin on Reinsurance Law (which won the inaugural British Insurance Law Association price in 1986), Colinvaux and Merkin’s Insurance Contract Law, The Law of Motor Insurance (with Jeremy Stuart-Smith QC) and Arbitration Law. Professor Merkin is a member of the presidential council of AIDA and serves as secretary to the AIDA reinsurance working party. He is a past member of the Law Society’s Insurance Law subcommittee and of the executive committee of the British Insurance Law Association.

Rod Attride-Stirling is Senior Partner of Attride-Stirling & Woloniecki in Bermuda. He specializes in complex civil litigation, corporate and commercial arbitration, insurance and reinsurance. His experience includes: litigating and arbitrating controversial claims, including claims involving insurance companies (including captives, retrocessionaires, managers, and brokers; litigating substantial telecoms company disputes, including disputes arising in transnational insolvency proceedings; advising in relation to policy wording for insurance and reinsurance companies. Rod is listed in the Euromoney Expert Guide to the World’s Leading Insurance and Reinsurance Lawyers.

Peter Dunlop is Counsel to Attride-Stirling & Woloniecki in Bermuda where he specializes in insurance/reinsurance litigation and arbitration funds litigation, corporate litigation, commercial and fraud litigation and insolvency. Prior to joining ASW in July 2007, Peter worked at Lovells LLP (now Hogan Lovells) in London where he specialized in insurance and reinsurance law. During his 9 years in London, Peter represented claimants and defendants based in the UK (Lloyds and company markets) and internationally in a variety of insurance disputes. Peter also has experience of finite reinsurance and regulatory investigations and spent a 6 months secondment with Gen Re in 2005.

Bespoke training

We can customise this course to meet the requirements of your organisation. Contact us to discuss your training requirements.

Previous customers include...

  • Aeolus Re Ltd
  • Allied World Assurance Company Ltd
  • ALPS Corporation
  • Christensen & Ehert
  • Conyers Dill & Pearman Ltd
  • Enstar Ltd
  • Horseshoe Group
  • PartnerRe Ltd
  • Platinum Underwriters Holdings Ltd
  • Renaissance Reinsurance
  • Trott & Duncan
  • Wakefield Quin Ltd