News round-up 15 - exclusively from Insurance Edge - Stubben Edge
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Photo by Elle Hughes on Unsplash

The peak holiday season hasn’t seen any slowdown in broker deals and acquisitions, we have additional thoughts on the famous whiplash reforms by the MoJ, plus, how risky is working from a home `shoffice?’ Yep, we said shoffice.


START: DEALS APLENTY

Aston Lark announced further expansion into the Republic of Ireland this week, buying Dublin-based Brassington Insurance. The word on the street is that AL has more deals in the pipeline, just waiting for the ink to dry before the official announcement too.

GRP has been quiet since early August, but it too announced a deal to acquire an NI-based business. Maybe the island of Ireland is ready for a big transformation as regards insurance broking – more tech, more automated systems, more online customer service via apps?


RUN: MORE COMPLEX PI CLAIMS AHEAD?

Insurance Edge magazine caught up with Robert Harris from BAE Systems this week. Here’s one nugget of info for you regarding the MoJ portal and the question of whether it will stop crash-for-cash claims:

“It is early days, but we are definitely seeing more crash-for-cash attempts this year. Maybe that’s down to the pandemic, it’s hard to say, but the other trend we are seeing is that because the Portal is quite challenging to navigate some claimants are trying more complex claims via a solicitor or other representative.”

Interesting to note too that the difficulty of the portal is causing claimants to retain solicitors or others to help them navigate the system. The net result could be a case of charities, activists and unions all providing free, or low cost MoJ portal advice to people, to assist their claim? Time will tell.


GROW: SHED HEAVEN OR RISKY BUSINESS?

The pandemic has prompted a wave of home office conversions, some of which are located in a shed or summer house. So shed meets office, creating a `shoffice.’

Yes, it’s an annoying name, but it’s a good way to get laptop Zoom/Teams based tasks done without taking over the kitchen or dining room. However, there are extra risks. That means opportunities for brokers:

Who built the new summer-house, who did the electrics and heating, what valuable items are inside overnight like computers, documents or back up hard drives etc? How does that risk tally up with the company’s business insurance policy regarding data breaches and cyber? How about slips and trips over random bicycles or rusting BBQs?

Yep, the shed-life can be wonderful, but the insurance issues are as varied as the beverage supply in the mini fridge.


AND GROW: LIFE SECTOR IS REBRANDING AS LEGACY

The dull world of Life insurance, where brokers or big-name insurers sold a basic policy that paid out a cash sum on death seems very old hat now. A TV ad campaign launched this week by Dead Happy, reminded IE magazine that today’s generation talk about `the legacy’ far more than passing away.

Brokers have a chance now to sell younger customers a product that is much more in tune with the values of charity giving, GoFundMe campaigns or just appearing to be a good person. Sure, everyone still wants to protect their family if the worst happens, but many people want to feel they made a real difference while they were on planet Earth.

Celebrating a life well-lived is perhaps a more appealing message than the traditional, `What will happen to the kids when you die?’ fear-based marketing of old? The Life sector is changing fast, and IE mag reckons that is a good thing.