Dear Member,

The second quarter is a busy time; in the last few months we have had the Asian Claims Convention and the President’s trip to various Asian countries to see members. I also visited London to visit clients, but took the opportunity to meet with the President of CILA, Jonathan Clark.

Jonathan has had a varied background, having been a senior loss adjuster for many years, but has also been claims director at the Financial Services Compensation Scheme in the UK, and is now the Global Head of business claims at Scor. It will probably sound unusual to most loss adjusters in AICLA that the President of a loss adjusting institute can be someone who is not a practising loss adjuster, but is in fact a claims manager. It is arguable that he is more unusual in being a practising claims handler rather than a loss adjusting company manager.

It was refreshing, in a way, to hear that CILA has many of the same views as us, and in fact many of the same concerns. They have the same challenges in getting to speak to insurers to explain the benefit of qualified loss adjusters, when insurers are often concerned with other issues and business processes. He sees and I agree, one of the main objectives is demonstrating the importance of loss adjusters. As a reinsurer, he sees the direct benefit of a pool of experienced and qualified professionals in dealing with claims, particularly during a catastrophe. What happens in a catastrophe if other models of claims handling reduce the numbers of day to day loss adjusters?

This issue is one that I hear a lot from loss adjusters. Although there is inherent self-interest in the question, it is nonetheless a valid question to ask – where are the loss adjusters going to come from for a future Christchurch Earthquake, Brisbane Flood, Thailand Flood or Japanese Earthquake, if technology or a change in business models reduces the pool of loss adjusters?

I am not sure there is a simple answer, but there may well be things that we can do in common with CILA to advance the practice of loss adjusting in our respective areas and around the world. I intend to continue to work with Jonathan and his successor (their Presidents are 1 year, ours typically 2 years) in areas of mutual interest.

Tony and I also meet recently with the Insurance Council of Australia. We had a very cordial meeting and discussed several issues of common interest, such as disaster claims handling. We also had the opportunity to discuss our views on the General Insurance Code of Practice, which were outlined in the May newsletter. The day then went from positive to wonderful with Queensland beating New South Wales in the 2nd State of Origin match.

Finally, registrations are open for the Claims Convention in Sydney in September and we hope to see many of you at the Convention, and/or at the trainee workshop the day before.