The cross-industry Property Damage Task Force aims to bring insurance professionals together to help drive change

Commercial law firm BLM has launched a new industry-wide Property Damage Task Force, designed to bring insurers, brokers, loss adjusters, legal specialists and corporates together to identify emerging issues in the property claims sector.

So far, the new body includes representatives from the ABI, Aon, Arch Insurance International, Hiscox, Pen Underwriting, QBE, Zurich, Sedgwick, forensic investigators Hawkins and GJB Consultancy.

The initiative has been set up in response to an increase in both the volume and value of property-related insurance claims across the UK.

As well as bringing the insurance industry together, BLM hopes the task force will develop a clear focus on identifying market trends, as well as generating awareness of emerging property damage claims issues and formulating claims strategies.

Benefiting customers and the wider market

John O’Shea, partner and head of property damage and recovery at BLM, said: “Property damage claims, across both personal and commercial lines, are on the rise and there is a clear need for a forum bringing different parts of the market together to focus on enhancing risk prevention, claims management and helping mitigate losses, for the benefit of customers and the wider market.

“The response to the task force has been very positive and we look forward to welcoming more members during the year.

”Fraud is also an area where collaboration is needed – particularly around escape of water - and one where we can bring real insight and data-driven intelligence to the table.”

The task force will meet quarterly, with the first meeting taking place in April 2021.

Its initial focus will be on flooding claims and property flood resilience, but the group will debate other property damage claims issues later this year.

Laura Hughes, manager of general insurance policy at the ABI, added: “It is great to be involved in this task force, bringing together leading figures in the industry to improve awareness and understanding of property claims issues.

“This is a good opportunity to work collaboratively to improve outcomes for policyholders, insurers and their supply chains. I am looking forward to seeing how this develops.”