Need to Insure Your Van? Here’s All You Need to Know

Having a van is great for so many reasons. They are stylish, comfortable, and spacious. They don’t have the stigma of a large truck and can still carry a lot. It’s typically not too hard to add some extra shelves or storage on the inside of your van if you need more room for tools, groceries, or whatever else you might need with you on your trip. With having such a nice vehicle, there are some things that you need to know in order to properly insure your van.

1. Choosing A Provider

The first thing that you need to do in order to insure your van is to choose a provider. You can either go with a well-known company, or you could go with a smaller company that only deals with vans and commercial vehicles. The choice is up to you, but it’s important to consider cost and coverage.

Since Insurance costs can depend on various factors, not every company will give you the same quote. It is important to compare commercial van insurance providers so that you can find the best policy for your van. Remember to check customer reviews so you can get a better understanding of what sort of services the provider offers.

While the cost is the number one factor, don’t forget to look at the coverage. This is the most important feature to look at when purchasing commercial van insurance because you don’t want to be underinsured.

2. Know Your Van

Another thing that you need to know in order to insure your van is the type of van that you have. If it is not listed on their list of vehicles, make sure to call them and ask before making a purchase. They will be able to tell you if they provide insurance for your specific vehicle or not.

If you are looking to save money on your van insurance, remember to stick with the basics. Don’t put any extra features onto your van that aren’t considered standard. In a way, this is similar to buying a house – you don’t want to add in an expensive feature, like a pool in the backyard. This is because you will end up paying more for these “extras” that are not needed.

However, if you think an extra feature could help lower your rate, call and ask them. Remember that they want to make you as a customer happy and if showing off an extra feature will make the sale, it’s something they will consider and possibly offer.

3. Have Your Papers In Order

The company will likely need a copy of your registration, as well as a copy of your VIN (this can be found on the dashboard). If you bought the used van and it still has its original license plate and registration, then they may require a copy of this as well.

Dealing with paperwork may seem like a daunting task, but it is important that you keep all of your paperwork in order. If you keep all your papers together in one place and show it to the agency when you need to, you’ll save yourself from a lot of stress and you should not have any issues with the provider. You want to make the process of getting insured as easy and quick for yourself as possible.

If you happen to lose these papers or they are destroyed, don’t worry – most companies will be able to look them up with the VIN number. If this is something that was done years ago and you can’t find those papers, just call the company and ask if they can still give you a quote with you not having those documents.

4. Know What Coverages You Need

When buying commercial van insurance, it is important to know what coverage options are available to you. While you can check out online, you may want to speak with an insurance professional. By speaking with them, you will get a better understanding of what coverage options are available and which ones would be best for you.

There are some coverages that every commercial van needs – liability is one of these. This covers the cost of injuries or property damage if you are at fault, while uninsured coverage is another important one. This helps protect you in case the other driver has no insurance or if what they have is not enough to cover what you need.

Another important coverage you should look at is underinsured coverage. Paying for injuries and property damage can be expensive, especially if it is a major accident. With the right amount of underinsured coverage, you would not have to pay as much money on your own.

5. Know Your Driving Records

Before you can purchase commercial van insurance you will need to know your driving records. This is something that should be taken care of before you go out and buy your insurance because if there are any accidents or tickets on your record, then you could end up paying more in the long run.

If, however, you do find out you have some accidents or tickets on your record and you would like to still purchase van insurance, make sure to call and speak with the company. They could help you get a much better rate by switching your coverage options or raising your deductible. You may even be able to get away with purchasing coverage without having the accidents on your record.

Even though it can be stressful, you want to make sure that you think about every possibility before making a decision. By doing this, you will be able to figure out whether or not something should stay on your record and if it should, how it should affect your insurance coverage.

The concept of reference of the carrier in terms of CMR insurance

As a result of the increase in the transportation of goods between countries by road, international regulations have been made to resolve conflicts on this issue and the need of determine the principles and rules of transportation has emerged. The aforementioned developments, the CMR Convention Convention, which contains general legal rules regarding the transportation of goods by land between countries, was signed in 1956 and came into force in 1961.Turkey agreed to join the additional protocol to CMR and CMR with the Law No. 3939 published in the Official Gazette dated 14.12.1993 and numbered 21788.

With the came into force of the convention, the rights and obligations of the carrier, the sender, the consignee or the right holder as the parties of the contract of carriage have been determined, and by whom and how the damage occurred in cases such as damage of the transported goods, partial or total loss, late delivery by exceeding the transportation period. Issues such as calculating the compensation to be paid are regulated and taken under provision

** With this type of insurance, the liability of the carrier, which is a party to a carriage contract to which the CMR is applied, is guaranteed as both the policy owner and the insured. However, in CMR insurance, every situation that causes the liability of the carrier is not included in the scope of risk. It is necessary to look at the relevant CMR Insurance policy guarantees, clauses and special conditions for each time. The other side of the CMR insurance contract is the policyholder. The insurant is the person who transfers the risk he bears to the insurer in return for the premium, that is, the “carrier” who carries out a transportation business subject to the provisions of the CMR. The insured is the person on whom the risk is incurred or on the property. Generally, in insurance contracts, the policy owner and the insured are the same person.

CMR Insurance, which is one of the liability insurance types that aims to prevent the decrease in the assets of the insured in order to compensate for the damages that may arise from the damages that the insured may cause to third parties; It aims to guarantee the risk undertaken by the carrier due to the transportation business in the transportations subject to the Convention on the International Carriage of Goods by Land (CMR). For this, at least one of the states of commencement or completion of the transport must be a party to the CMR convention.

Shipments of the carrier covered by the insurer under the CMR Insurance; damage to the goods, loss and defect or deficiency in transportation vehicles, damages arising from the faults of those assigned by the insured carrier and other risks specified in the CMR Insurance Policy. The protection provided by the CMR insurance contract will begin with the conclusion of the insurance contract or the payment of the first insurance premium.

The concept of subrogation originates from the Turkish Commercial Code; specifically TTK 1472 ”When the insurer pays the insurance indemnity, he legally replaces with the insured. If the insured has the right to file a lawsuit against those responsible for the damage occurred, this right passes to the insurer up to the amount he indemnifies. If a lawsuit or proceeding has been initiated against those responsible, the insurer may continue the lawsuit or proceeding from where it left off, by proving the payment it has made to the insured, pursuant to the Subrogation rule, without the need for the approval of the court or the other party” However, the point that should not be confused here, is the Commodity Transport Insurer of the cargo owner/sender. In other words, when a commodity is damaged or lost during transportation, the cargo insurer will have the right of subrogation against the carrier and its CMR Insurer after the cargo owner has compensated for the loss.

In the decision of the 11th LAW DEPARTMENT of the Supreme Court E. 2003/5045 K. 2004/271 T. 15.1.2004 He summarised the conditions for the formation of the concepts of Recourse and Succession in Transport Insurances. In order for the insurer to have a Right of Succession, the existence of an insurance contract, the fact that the insurer has made a payment to the insurant based on this contract, and that the insured has the right to sue the insurer against the person who harmed him, must be present. All conditions must be present at the same time.

The main legal consequences of the insurer’s succession are:

  1. A new right does not arise as a result of succession; transfer of an existing right to a new creditor (insurer). The insured’s right to claim compensation against the person who caused the damage is transferred to the insurer.
  2. The insured is obliged to provide the insurer with all available evidence and necessary information regarding the claim in question.
  3. The insured person is not responsible for the existence of the claim nor the solvency of the person responsible.
  4. The claim for compensation is transferred with the statute of limitations existing/subjected. Therefore, the statute of limitations neither begins with the succession nor is it interrupted by the succession.
  5. The claim for compensation is transferred to the insurer, together with all objection and defence rights of the party responsible for the damage against the insured person.

(Graber, VVG Art. 72, Rn. 26-30; Sieber/ Hüsser, VVG Art. 72, Rn. 43; Oftinger/ Stark, § 11,)

In the event that the subject of the insurance is damaged due to the action of a third party and any of the dangers covered by the coverage, without any fault, negligence or violation of the policy terms of the insured, the insurer becomes the owner of all legal receivables by replacing the insured, after paying the damage to the insured. It is the situation where the insurer subrogate to those who caused the damage, demanding an amount equal to the compensation paid by replacing the insured.

Like this; In property and liability insurance, the insured is prevented from claiming double compensation from both the insurance company and the person or institutions that caused the damage. However, in order for the right of recourse to arise; The damage must be covered by the guarantee and must not have been done intentionally by the insured.

In the Convention, while the responsibility of the carrier on the transported goods is broadly expressed, from the time of receipt of the goods from the sender to the moment of delivery to the sent or right owner, at the same time, general and special reasons that will allow the carrier to get rid of responsibility are also revealed in detail.

In the CMR contract, the liability of the carrier manifests itself as a narrowed strict liability, in addition to the fault of the carrier, in case of the fault of the sender, the consignee, the beneficiary or their assistants or employees involved in the transportation process, the carrier will be freed from the liability of compensation for damage arising from the goods at the rate of the detected defect. As such, it has been tried to ensure a balance of rights and interests between the parties of the contract of carriage in the provisions of the convention contract. This, in fact, regulates the recourse or non-recourse of the right holders or their insurers against the CMR Insurer due to the damage or loss on the transported goods.

The carrier cannot be held liable if the goods that are wasted or damaged due to their characteristics are not packaged or are incorrectly packaged when they are not packaged or poorly packaged. The responsibility of the carrier may not be mentioned in case of damage during the loading and stowing of the goods by the sender, the recipient or the persons acting on their behalf, but in these cases, the burden of proof is on the carrier in determining the damage liability. Again, the carrier will not be held liable, especially in case of damage to the goods that can be damaged partially or completely by breakage, rusting, rot, drying, normal fire or moth and vermin, and in cases such as insufficient or incorrect brand or numbers on the boxes or packages. While such situations are not subject to the responsibility of the carrier in terms of the CMR Convention, we can also accept them as the situations where the insurer does not guarantee and will not pay compensation to the damaged cargo persons in terms of CMR Insurances.

Both the CMR convention contract and the provisions of the TCC numbered 6102 accept that the carrier has an obligation of protection, surveillance, inspection and control over the transported goods, and that the transported goods are damaged, partially or completely lost due to the carrier’s failure to fulfil these obligations as a prudent carrier with the utmost care. It has been accepted that the carrier is directly responsible for the compensation of this damage, if the results such as late delivery by exceeding the transportation period and damage occur. These provisions of the convention on the framework of the responsibility of the carrier within the scope of the transportation process from the moment of receipt of the goods to the moment of delivery are of an imperative nature, and it will not be possible for the parties to agree on the mitigation or removal of this responsibility.

In order to reveal the responsibility of the carrier due to the goods transported in accordance with the regulations of the CMR convention, the carrier has not fulfilled its duty to protect, watch, control and seize the goods with the utmost care, such as a prudent carrier, as a result of which the goods are damaged, lost or delayed. It is necessary to determine the existence of a causal link between the damage to the goods and the violation of the carrier’s obligation to protect the goods. In practice, the Court of Cassation decides that the fault is shared between the sender and the carrier in cases where the carrier neglects its supervision responsibility and that recourse will be made at the rate of this sharing.

Another important issue in the responsibility of the carrier on the transported goods is that if the goods are damaged, partially or completely lost due to the fault of the carrier’s assistants and employees, the persons whose services are used, and if the damage occurs, such as late delivery by exceeding the transportation period and the damage occurs. The carrier will be liable as the existence of the defect. In this context, the carrier will be considered directly responsible in case of damage to the transported goods due to all faulty behaviours, especially negligence and intent, of these persons included in the transportation process by the carrier. Of course, here again, the existence of an appropriate and convenient causal link between the faulty actions or actions of the employees, men or persons whose services are used and the damage to the goods shall also be sought.

In case of damage to the transported goods, the liability of the carrier for compensation of damage will now be revealed, with the determination of the responsibility of the carrier. In this case, the carrier shall be liable to pay the compensation to be calculated according to the market price of the place where the goods are received for transport, according to the market price in the absence of the exchange price, and objectively according to the comparable values of the goods of the same type and nature, if the market price cannot be determined. Therefore, if the transported goods are damaged during the transportation process, the difference between the undamaged value and the damaged value will be compensated at the time and place of receipt for transportation. An upper limit has been imposed on the compensation amount to be paid by the carrier in this case, pursuant to the CMR contract and the provisions of the TCC. In case the transported goods are damaged within the scope of the transportation activity, it is accepted that the carrier is responsible for the missing gross weight of the whole of the goods in case of complete damage, and of the damaged part in case of partial damage, with 8.33 SDR calculation unit for each kilogram.

Since the provisions of both the CMR and the TCC regarding this liability are of an imperative nature, agreements and provisions regarding the removal or mitigation of this liability by the parties of the contract of carriage will be deemed invalid, will not have any consequences and will not bind the contract parties or third parties. On the other hand, besides the fact that it is not possible to mitigate or remove the carrier’s responsibility, it is accepted that the agreements and provisions regarding increasing this liability or raising the upper limit will also be valid. Again, in the event that the carrier itself or its employees cause damage to the goods with intent, fault equivalent to intent, reckless actions, the carrier will not be able to benefit from the provisions regarding the limitation of liability and will be liable for covering all the damage.

Another controversial issue in practice is the liability of the carrier, who is the CMR Insured, during road transport due to traffic accidents that are not at fault. SUPREME COURT 11. LAW OFFICE. 2016/7990K. In its decision dated 4.4.2018 T. 2018/2393 It has been ruled that “…the driver of the defendant carriers is faultless in the traffic accident, the fault lies entirely with the driver of the opposite vehicle, but the fault of the driver of the carrier in the traffic accident cannot relieve the carrier from contractual liability”.

The person who can claim compensation from the CMR Insurer in case of damage, loss or delay of the transported goods is the person sent or written as the rightful owner in the transport document. In order to be able to claim compensation, it is not necessary for the sent or right owner to have actually suffered damage or to receive the goods. In the lawsuits to be filed due to the damage caused by the transported goods, one and three year statute of limitations are stipulated in terms of both the CMR convention and the provisions of the TCC. In general, the statute of limitations for claims arising from transportation activities carried out within the scope of TCC and CMR Conventions is 1 (one) year. However, if the damage, loss or delay in the goods is caused by intent, fault equivalent to intent, gross fault or reckless acts, the statute of limitations is accepted as 3 (three) years.

In addition, the transportation fee, customs duty and other costs incurred due to the transportation activity will be compensated by the carrier in proportion to the calculated damage. It is also possible to demand interest on the compensation to be paid by the carrier in case the transported goods are damaged. The indemnity creditor will also have an appraisal of approximately 5 percent for the remittance or payable from the beneficiary.

As a result, it should be noted that the purpose of determining the liability of the carrier for damage and loss arising from the transportation of cargo within the framework of the CMR Convention is that the situations that the carrier is responsible or not responsible for are also valid for the CMR Insurer.

HULL INSURANCE AND GENERAL AVERAGE

General Scheme of The Marine Insurance

Marine hull insurance covers the damages that happen to an insured ship or other insurable parts of it, during the voyage, carrying cargo, during dispatch, anchorage, or repair. This coverage comprises all physical losses or perils, liabilities, and expenses of third parties, which arise from perils of the sea. They are known as “Marine Hull” among the Lloyd’s London market.

This insurance type has a small capacity, and they constitute %2 of the global non-life insurance. Nevertheless, it is a well-specialised field that provides exclusive coverages for different perils.

The main marine insurance market is in London which has the 18% of the global maritime premium. London market is represented by unions organised under Lloyd’s Underwriters Association and, on the other side also represented by International Underwriting Association. The second biggest market is in Japan which has the 16% of the global premium, and they are followed by the USA with %13 and Germany – Norway with 9%.

Marine insurance, especially Ocean Hull, has similarities with non-life reinsurance than other direct insurance types. It starts with the construction of the ship in foreign countries, and it does not have to be in a certain place. When the ship is launched, it can be open to traffic with cargo owners, insurers, and directors worldwide. In addition to this, in general, the crew is a combination of different nationalities. The flag of the ship is usually the flag of the owner’s country or any other country, where is not a part of the ship’s traffic.

Second, the type, which is named Ocean Hulls, has high insurance values. Therefore, in general, more than one insurer from different countries share the risk. These works proceed through brokers.

The third resemblance between marine insurance and non-life reinsurance is, those policies are usually issued for the one-year period except for one-time coverages.

As the fourth, mostly the result of the above explanation, the premium circulation is not stable (volatility) and therefore the demands are changeable. Apart from natural variations, that affect the occurrence of the damage, volatility may also be the result of changes in the deductible amounts, increased risks, variations of international regulations, or exposure of risk.

Hull and Machinery Insurances

The word “marine” is a comprehensive concept which embodies notions “hull”, “cargo”, “marine liability” and “offshore”.

In order to define “a ship”,; a ship is a sea vessel, which is not very small, that can move on the sea and the usage of the ship depends on its movability. Hull is a wider concept than a ship and it means a thing which is hallowed and voluminous. It is a general concept for ships and sea vessels. An insurance type HULL AND MACHINERY (H&M) provides a coverage for ship and its machinery. Although, in theory, H&M is not a compulsory insurance, it has become compulsory in practice to avoid problems that may happen on the controls of the international ports.

In the H&M Coverage, the insurable interests are, integral parts of the ship (when those parts are missing the ship is an incomplete ship; the hull, the mast, the deck, the tank, etc.) and additions of the ship that belong to the owner (maps, signal tools, etc.). In addition to this, subject to the insurer’s approval, sea vessels, which cannot be defined as a ship; houseboats, floating crane, barge, floating restaurants, sea motorcycles, etc. can be a subject of the policy.

From a different perspective, what real dangers in the marine industry are? They can be classified like in the below:

  • (A) Damage to the insured or loss of the insured, whether the insured is a ship or an oil rig, cargo, or another concept which is in the marine concept (partial or total loss).
  • (B) Every kind of liabilities. (Collision, environment, port, crew etc.)
  • (C) Loss of profit that arises from a temporary malfunction due to an accident (loss of profits insurance).
  • (D) Expenses arising from an accident, which can be compensated under Marine Insurance Policy. (Towage, salvage, etc.)

Hull Policy is a united assurance for risks under the scope of A, B, and D. Such that, for the united risks, an insurer can only be responsible for threefold of the insured amount. However, if the liability covered under the policy is exceeded, the exceeded amount is usually covered by P&I Clubs. Rules may show differences for every P&I Club since there are limited clubs that work under these conditions.

For the corporate objective, vessels are divided as Coasting Vessel and Ocean Vessel (Ocean Hull). Ocean Hull is also named “Bluewater Boat”. While ocean vessels have an international character, which refers to any ship that is part of international maritime trade, coasting vessels are generally used in inland waters.

Although coasting vessels can describe other small vessels such as fishing boats, coastal ferries, barges, etc., there is not a certain line to separate these notions. While damages to fishing boats and damages they have caused may be covered under the marine policy, the lives of fishers and loss of their profits may not be covered even if they are under the scope the marine insurance.

When we evaluate the other headline of our topic, General Average, it can be described as “voluntary sacrifices and extraordinary expenses in a voyage to protect the ship or cargo from a danger.”. At Article 1272 / III of the Turkish Commercial Code, it is stated that damages will be appropriated between ship, cargo, and carriage. This article is in accordance with Article A of York- Antwerp Rules. Because freight of a charterer, fuel for the time charter, or container of a commercial manager can also be subject to a general average.

For the existence of the general average, the ship and cargo should be together. Therefore, there will be no general average if the ship sails without cargo. However, a ship that sails without cargo and without charter-party, can be protected against extraordinary expenses and voluntary sacrifices with additional clauses to policy.

Being exposed to a sea danger is not a compulsory matter for declaring a general average. To illustrate it; the extension of the fire in the dock to the ship or cutting the anchor in order to prevent the spread of flames can also be a reason for the general average. In addition to this; even if the ship and cargo do are not damaged on the same level, declaration of the general average would be proper.

There is a condition for a proper general average declaration, real danger. Estimated danger or proximate danger (causa Proxima) is not sufficient for the general average. A precedent Supreme Court of Turkey decision states that the general average cannot be declared when the ship is grounded by its master’s own negligence. Therefore, the faulty party cannot claim any compensation and also is responsible to related parties for damage that arose by his own negligence (Turkish Court of Appeal 11th Circuit D: 25.11.1985, 1985/6087 and 1985/6406). Further, in the case “Watson v Fireman’s Fund Insurance”; the court held that; even if the master has a margin of error, spilling water because of the estimation that there is a fire and this fire will cause damage to goods in holds is not proper for declaring a general average and the master is responsible from the damages arose from the water.

Does the master have to wait until the appearance of real danger? An answer for this question is stated by Roche J. in “THE MAKIS” case. Roche J. held that; the danger does not have to be immediate or occur right away, the danger must not be imaginary.

In general average situation, actions and expenses should also be extraordinary. Although it is open for an opposite interpretation, there is an important case that can set an example. “Wilson v Bank of Victoria”; The ROYAL STANDARD was a large sailing ship with an auxiliary steam screw. She sailed on a voyage from Australia to England carrying a cargo of gold and about 500 tons of bunker coal. Eleven days into the voyage she hit an iceberg and suffered so much damage to her masts and sails that, in practical terms, she lost all power of sailing. She reached Rio de Janeiro under steam alone and nearly exhausted her stock of coal. The expense that made, in that case, was not held as extraordinary and the general average was not accepted.

After the above explanations about the “Hull Insurance” and “General Average”; it should be explained in such a circumstance which insurer bears which damage? This will be determined after the apportionment of damages (dispatch). In principle, H&M Insurer bears the “damages to the ship” and Cargo Insurer bears the “damages to the cargo”. “Gaps” that were left behind from the dispatch period, are filled by the liability insurer.

Due to article 66/4 of Marine Insurance Act 1906; if the assured has incurred a general average expenditure, without claiming from other relevant parties of the general average he may claim expenses directly from the insurer. If hull insurance does not cover the full expenses, the remaining amount will be covered by P&I (Protection and Indemnity) Club.

If some expenses are not under the coverage of the hull insurance, marine vessels liability insurance will bear those expenses. As an example, to this situation, if the real value of the ship is higher than the insured value, or rejection of the compensation claim by the cargo insurer because of breach of the carriage contract by the carrier.

The general average Absorption Clause is regulated with IHC 2002’s article 43 (additional Clauses), a part of the English Hull Clauses. Subject to insurer’s written approval, insured has right of choice. If the insured will not claim any demand from other relevant parties to the general average, the insurer will waive his right to subrogate. However, this situation is against article 1472 of the Turkish Commercial Code and therefore otherwise cannot be agreed upon since the code is compulsory.

Another point about Hull Insurances that should be mentioned; the question of whether there is a direct right to claim from the insurer. Although there is a chance to claim directly from the insurer in most countries and in Turkey, this right is not accepted under English Law. However, the direct claim right is provided, if the right of compensation of third parties are covered in the policy, in Denmark under Insurance Policies Code, Article 95.

As an example, “The Yusuf Cepnioglu” is an important case for this subject. The injured party brought an action in Turkey, directly to the P&I Club. High Court evaluated the case whether there is a need for an anti-suit injunction or not. The foreign law (Turkish Commercial Code) was discussed that gives a chance of a right of direct claim. Court of Appeal decided that, although the right of a direct claim is a contractual right, it is not an independent right and, the court allowed the anti-suit injunction. This decision of the Court of Appeal is important because it is about the right of a direct claim against and current.

In conclusion, Marine Insurance has an important role to ease maritime commerce and international trade. Since “Marine Insurance” is proceeded as a legal contract, “marine Insurance Law” plays a significant role in the field. English Law is the dominant law about maritime law.

DLA Piper published global report on sustainability

DLA Piper has today published a comprehensive global report on sustainability and the implications on the insurance industry. The report looks at sustainability-related initiatives and frameworks around the world and analyses the current status in 19 countries. With its global reach and coverage the report is the first of its kind setting out the legal basis for sustainable insurance.

The insurance industry is affected by environmental, social and governmental (ESG) risks in its entirety. From asset prices and investment choice to business transition risk; the ESG risk to insurers’ own operations including property, personnel. supply chains and claims – the insurance industry will need to deal with many issues. However, it is also uniquely placed to play a fundamental role in as part of the solution. Insurance engages with almost every industry and sector; it owns a large amount of the world’s assets and it has a global reach and a finely detailed knowledge of risk transfer and solutions.

The report was launched at an online event attended by industry members from a variety of functions (including compliance, responsible business, claims and risk management) at insurance companies, brokers and consultancy firms with speakers from UNEP FI, AIG, Insurance Council of New Zealand and FTI Consulting. During the session a survey was conducted which found that in spite of the COVID-19 pandemic 69% of attendees had experienced an increase of the importance of ESG issues due to public attention and policymaker statements. This has been reinforced by increasing focus on ESG topics from employees (57%) and customers (31%) and 38% of attendees noticed a marked increase in their competitors’ activities in this area. Within insurance companies the areas most affected by ESG issues were Investment (71%) and Risk Management (64%) departments.

Download a full copy of the report

Jennifer Waldner Grant, Chief Sustainability Officer at AIG, who provided an editorial to the report, said: “We applaud the commitment DLA Piper has made through the publication of this report. It will ensure the insurance industry is informed and educated around the changing regulatory landscape on ESG topics, global coalitions, partnerships and initiatives supporting businesses, regulators and society in addressing the climate emergency.”

DLA Piper Counsel and Chief Editor of the report, Heike Schmitz said: “DLA Piper has a particular focus on sustainability issues, both as a firm and supporting our clients in this hugely important area. This report is our contribution to the debate, focused on the insurance market, and aims to provide an overview of current developments and thus support decision makers, inhouse counsel, sustainability officers and others as they develop their sustainability strategies.”

Electronic Insurance Regulations Issued

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) Insurance Authority recently published the Insurance Authority Board of Directors’ Resolution No. 18 of 2020 on Electronic Insurance Regulations dated 27 April 2020 (“the Regulation”). The first draft of these regulations was published in January 2019, and after public consultation and discussion, a revised draft was published in December 2019, which has now been finalised. The Regulations and the timing of it are very relevant in the current circumstances, i.e. the impact of COVID-19 and the social distancing measures by the government, marketing, and solicitation of insurance by physical means is at an all-time low.

The term electronic has been widely defined as anything relating to technology having electrical, digital, magnetic, wireless, visual, electromagnetic, automated, optical or similar capabilities. The scope of the Regulations extend to all electronic and smart insurance operations carried out on the internet address of the company, social media such as Facebook, Linkedin, multimedia such as YouTube, Instagram, blogs, applications such as google doc, Wiki, AI-based systems, text messages, instant chat channels, smart applications, etc.

All insurance companies and related businesses such as insurance agents, actuary, broker, surveyor, insurance consultant, carrying out operations through electronic mode, require prior approval from the Insurance Authority. The application for such approval must be accompanied by an action plan for electronic operations, approved by the Board, and contain analysis of the risk, projected volume and contingency plan for the electronic operations.

Life insurance policies with investment components cannot be transacted online, while the sale of life insurance policies with standard underwriting (less the investment component), such as term life is allowed. Health and general lines of business on property and liability risk, including marine cargo insurance can all be sold online and are subject to the Regulations.

The website of the insurance companies must be maintained by the IT department of the company, but if the management of such a website is being outsourced to a third-party, then prior approval of the Insurance authority must be obtained in this regard. Insurers currently use multiple online platforms for online marketing and selling, often procured through third-party entities. The intent of the Regulations is to capture and regulate, where possible all such third-party entities who are engaged in insurance distribution.

The Regulations also put much impetus on provisions of information security and also requires that storage of data must be in the UAE. It is however not clear whether the Regulations require any Cloud server to be based within the UAE.

In addition, the Regulations recognise that the electronic platforms and systems of the companies may not be developed enough to carry out these operations and hence allow outsourcing of electronic operations for this purpose. The Regulations also allow usage of third-party websites for sale of insurance but require the prior consent of the Insurance Authority to be obtained for any such arrangements.

The Regulations also recognise, for the first time, the “Price Comparison Websites” and interestingly state that only an insurance broker can deal with a price comparison website. The Regulations also require Price Comparison Websites to be registered with the Insurance Authority and a copy of the agreement signed between Insurance Broker and Price Comparison Websites must be shared with the Insurance Authority. The prerequisites for registration of Price Comparison websites has also been listed in the Regulations but state that the application for registration must be made in accordance with the applicable regulations, implying that the Insurance Authority may be issuing further regulation on Price Comparison Websites shortly.

The Regulations state that the provisions shall apply from the date of publication of Regulations in the official gazette, but also allow insurance companies and insurance-related professions a time period of 6 months from the date of publication in the official gazette to align their position and operations with the Regulations.

While the recognition of Price Comparison Websites is a step in the right direction from the UAE Insurance Authority given the global trends in this regard, the requirement for a Price Comparison Website to deal only through a broker creates an extra layer of regulatory requirement and therefore unnecessary costs, the benefit of which could have been passed on to end customers in the absence of such requirement. Nonetheless, insurance markets globally have noticed a surge in demand for insurance policies through online mode and therefore this Regulation brings much-needed clarity, which will help in further growth of the UAE insurance market.

Dentons adds Insurance Regulatory duo in Los Angeles

Dentons, the world’s largest law firm, today announces that Robert P. Barbarowicz and Kathleen M. McCain have joined the Insurance Regulatory practice. Focused on complex insurance transactions and regulatory disputes, the pair will be resident in the Firm’s Los Angeles office.

Both highly experienced in regulatory proceedings and transactions, the pair bring a balance of Barbarowicz’s transactional experience in complex transactions involving insurance companies and agencies and McCain’s perspective from litigating insurance disputes at the trial and appellate levels.

“We’re delighted to welcome Bob and Kathleen to our world class insurance practice,” said Keith Moskowitz, co-chair of Dentons’ US Insurance practice. “Our insurance clients will benefit from their wealth of experience and their transactional and litigation experience serving the industry.”

Barbarowicz has more than 30 years’ experience in the insurance industry with a particular focus on large and complicated insurance transactions, purchase transactions, redomestications, securing regulatory approvals for complex transactions in many states, force-placed insurance, rate regulation and rate filings. His experience includes representing property and casualty, life and title insurance companies. Prior to entering private practice he held leadership roles at several large insurance companies, including Balboa Insurance Group and the Ahmanson Insurance Companies. In addition to counseling insurance clients Barbarowicz advises clients on corporate finance transactions including substantial capital extraction. He holds both a JD and a BA from Pennsylvania State University.

McCain represents insurance companies and regulators in navigating rate regulations, policy review, insurance M&A, compliance, financial and market conduct examinations, litigation strategy, holding company matters, reinsurance, corporate governance, insolvency and asset recovery. Experienced across all lines of insurance including property and casualty, life, title insurance and surplus lines matters, she also uses her litigation background to offer clients unique perspective and insight. McCain is an Accredited Insurance Receiver for Legal and Reinsurance by the International Association of Insurance Receivers. She holds a JD from Valparaiso University Law School and a BA from Ohio Northern University.