Litigation rising - Reactions legal survey

Litigation rising - Reactions legal survey

According to early indications from Reactions’ 2011 legal market survey, 81% of insurers and reinsurers say that levels of re/insurance litigation either increased or stayed the same last year.

The three key reasons given so far for an increase are: the softening market environment aggravating contracts; fast-changing regulatory environments; and ‘emerging risks’.

So far, over 150 reinsurance and insurance firms have taken part in the survey, ranking and rating law firms across a range of metrics and categories including insurance-linked securities, regulation and litigation.

Firms are also being rated by jurisdiction.

To maximise participation, the deadline for the survey is being extended from March 25 to April 1. Law firms across the world are urged to get their clients to fill out the 10 minute survey.

Click here to take part in the Reactions legal survey 2011.

On the issue of litigation, one high-profile insurer states: “The economic cycle and reduced profits/margins means potential claims are more aggressively pursued.”

Another reports it has an increased due to “dissatisfaction with ADR, arbitration specifically”, while another says “the impact of the financial crisis resulting in the suspension of payments of many of our insureds.”

The results of the survey will appear in the May print issue of Reactions as well as online.

Law firms themselves are not allowed to vote for or rate themselves – they need to get their clients to do so on their behalf. Without participation, law firms will not be recognised for their work in the re/insurance industry.

Respondents to Reactions’ previous legal survey, which covered the year 2009, consisted of in-house counsel at insurers, reinsurers and brokers. Just over 100 replies came from across the globe, including Bermuda, Asia, the Middle East and Latin America.

In the US market, the overall favourite in the 2010 survey was Dewey & LeBoeuf. The Bermuda poll favoured Attride-Stirling & Woloniecki as overall winner, while in Europe the winning firm overall was Clyde & Co.

Sidley Austin won the global category for insurance-linked securities in 2010 and was mentioned in every category in the US, coming out top for insolvency, highly commended for reinsurance, corporate contracts and litigation/dispute management.

Participants in the 2010 survey, published in the May print issue last year, concluded that the effects from the financial crisis were still being felt. Fears about regulation and increased incidents of litigation emerged as the main legal worries.

Click here for the link to this year's survey

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