So a High Court judge in 2000 has decided that Lloyd's showed staggering incompetence a decade ago. Hands up anyone who can honestly claim their organisation didn't when comparing life ten years ago with their modern administration.
The courts themselves have spent several years letting out a stream of wrongly convicted prisoners showing that the law too has exhibited a staggering incompetence of its own in the past.
One wonders what vitriol the judge would have reserved the for insurance trading in Edward Lloyd's coffee house more than 300 year ago.
Procedures were flawed in Lloyd's ten years ago. Too much was based on word of mouth and too much trust was placed in the historic successes that had made many Lloyd's Names even wealthier over successive years.
The High Court judge has now ruled in favour of Lloyd's and against the disgruntled Names. The Names should accept defeat gracefully and pay up – like everyone else.
It is time to draw a line under the episode.
The Lloyd's of today is far removed from the Lloyd's of ten years ago. And the announcement
of the new access rules, which should open the market up to sources outside the traditional broker entrants, demonstrate the market's intention to move on further. Couple that with the investments we are seeing in technology and speeding up trading processes and claims paying, and we will have an unrecognisable organisation in a few years' time.
But change presents dangers. Lloyd's has opted for the untried and untested General Insurance Standards Council as its main regulator for policy sellers. Let's hope that doesn't prove to be another example of staggering incompetence.