Loss adjuster is going downhill, industry source says

NFU has dropped Capita McLarens from its loss adjusting panel.

Its key panel members include Crawford & Co and Cunningham Lindsey.

An NFU spokesman said: "We can confirm we are no longer using Capita." Capita refused to comment on its loss of business.

A leading market source said Capita was "losing far too many clients". He said NFU was a "mid-range" client of Capita's and suggested the loss adjuster's service was going "downhill". He said there were other losses in the pipeline.

The source suggested that when Capita bought McLarens, 33 out of the 40 partners left the business. He said these were key account managers. "Having lost that many partners, the account management cannot be that good," he said. Capita acquired McLarens Toplis in May 2001.

Another leading industry player said the cumulative effect was a big hit on Capita's revenue. "NFU would have been a substantial account and I would be surprised if it was less than a £1m account," he said.

Capita has lost some substantial business this year and Insurance Times reported in September that Churchill had axed Capita from its loss adjusting panel. It was understood that Churchill felt it was receiving second-class service from the loss adjuster.

A Churchill spokeswoman said the decision was made after the insurer reviewed its household loss adjusting services. "We have experienced phenomenal growth and needed to ensure that we had the best executive panel," she said. "We had a good relationship with Capita in the past."

Capita suffered a second blow in September when its managing director Mark Smith resigned. Industry sources suggested Smith had left because he was unhappy with unrealistic profit targets for the loss adjusting arm. A statement issued by the company said that Smith had decided to pursue

"alternative career opportunities".