Brokers and Law Society to ease October renewal chaos

The British Insurance Brokers’ Association (Biba) and the Law Society are working on a voluntary code of conduct for solicitors’ professional Indemnity (PI) insurance.

Biba has already produced guidance for solicitors that the Law Society will publish to lawyers today.

But Biba’s Graeme Trudgill told Insurance Times this morning that the proposed voluntary code of conduct for brokers was only presented to Biba yesterday (Wednesday) and would have to go to its PI, liability and general insurance committees first.

He rejected claims in today’s Law Society Gazette that it would mean brokers being accredited by the Law Society. “We are not going down an accredited broker route,” he said.

All solicitors renew their PI cover on 1 October, causing a major headache for brokers and insurers, many of whom have to take on extra staff to cope with the rush. Solicitors also leave it to the last moment in the hope of securing a cheap deal. The problem came to a head last year when the AIG crisis and the credit crunch saw insurers reluctant to place business or insisting in massive premium hikes. All these issues are being tackled by the new guidance and the new code of practice.

According to the Law Society Gazette 151 solicitor firms were in the assigned risks pool, which, for high premiums, provides PI for firms unable to find cover with insurers.

The Law Society did not return calls this morning.