Elite Insurance says it may not secure a rating in time for the renewal period

One of the biggest unrated insurers in the solicitors’ professional indemnity (PI) market has said it may not secure a rating in time for the renewal period.

Elite Insurance chief executive Jason Smart said it was likely, but not guaranteed, that the firm could secure a rating this summer, according to the Law Society Gazette.

Elite provides insurance for 1,046 solicitor firms and will be affected by the Solicitor Regulation Authority’s (SRA) plan to insist that all PI providers have at least a B-plus rating.

According to the Law Society, almost 25% of small firms are with unrated insurers.

Smart told the Law Society Gazette that its application for a B-plus rating will cost up to £100,000, which would add to the costs of its premiums.

The SRA has finished consulting on plans to ban any insurers without a minimum B rating from the solicitors market.

In its consultation paper, the SRA said its proposal “provides the best balance between providing additional protection for consumers and minimising any negative impacts on consumers and law firms”. 

A decision is likely to be made at its board meeting on 21 May.