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Insurance Market Glossary 

New to the insurance market, or just need a refresher? The industry is full of jargon and complex language, find out the meaning of insurance terms here. 

  • Binder
    A binder, also known as a binding authority agreement or contract of delegation, is a contract for delegated authority supplied to a coverholder by a managing agent. The binder provides general details regarding all the risks that the coverholder has bound on behalf of the carrier. Risks must be bound within the binder period, which is typically one year from the creation of the binder, however, risks bound within the binder period can extend past this period. The binder also sets out the responsibilities of the coverholder, such as issuing insurance documents on the managing agent's behalf, handling premiums, and agreeing on claims.
  • Bordereaux
    A bordereau is a monthly report (typically an excel spreadsheet) that holds all the details of claims made that month by a TPA on behalf of a carrier/underwriter. The report includes information relating to tax, premiums paid, and claims paid. A TPA's loss fund (used to pay out claims) will be reimbursed according to the claims information provided in the bordereaux; therefore, it is essential that these reports are completed accurately.
  • Broker
    An insurance broker provides communication between the syndicates or insurer and the insurance buyer. For the Lloyd's market, an insurance customer will typically contact a local insurance broker or agent, who will then contact a Lloyd's broker to detail the potential risk. The Lloyd's broker will then present this risk to an underwriter who will evaluate the risk. Brokers tend to be specialized and therefore more knowledgeable about certain areas of insurance, e.g., boat insurance.
  • Carrier
    An insurance carrier is an insurance company that provides insurance coverage. An insurance carrier is responsible for employing insurance agents and underwriters, as well as handling claims and coordinating payments.
  • Claims Adjuster
    A claims adjuster, also known as a loss adjuster, is responsible for the handling of claims. The claims adjuster assesses the insurance company's liability and determines the amount of compensation that should be paid out when a claim is made.
  • Coverholder
    A Coverholder is a managing general agent (MGA) that is approved to underwrite risks under binding authority. This allows a managing agent to conduct business globally (unrelated to the Lloyds of London market) through the coverholder who acts in the area of interest.
  • DCA (Delegated Claim Authority)
    DCA is a company or partnership empowered to adjudicate claims on insurance contracts underwritten by members of a syndicate, as per the stipulations outlined in a delegated claims administration agreement.
  • Delegated Authority
    Delegated authority involves the transfer of underwriting and claims handling to third parties, such as coverholders or third-party administrators, on behalf of insurers if it is considered to be more practical or cost-effective to do so.
  • Institute of London Underwriters (ILU)
    The Institute of London Underwriters was initially set up as the trade association for insurance companies writing marine, aviation, and transport. They merged with LIRMA to form the IUA in 1998 (See IUA).
  • International Underwriting Association of London (IUA)
    The International Underwriting Association of London (IUA) was formed as a merging of the London International Insurance and Reinsurance Market Association (LIRMA) and the Institute of London Underwriters (ILU) in 1998 to bring together representative bodies for the marine and non-marine sectors of the London company insurance market. They act as a representative body for the insurance and reinsurance companies acting outside of the Lloyd's of London Market. Similar to the LMA and LIIBA, the IUA aims to provide technical support to help modernize the market by reforming outdated processes and updating electronic interfaces.
  • LIIBA (London International Insurance Brokers Association)
    The London International Insurance Brokers Association provides a similar function to the LMA, providing representation for Lloyd's insurance and reinsurance brokers working in the London and international insurance markets. LIIBA is formed from a number of separate committees, for example, Marine, Non-Marine, and Aviation. The LIIBA Exec Board attempts to act as a voice for all these committees and represents their interests when liaising with stakeholders.
  • LIRMA (London Insurance and Reinsurance Market Association)
    The London Insurance and Reinsurance Market Association (LIRMA) was initially set up as a trade association specializing in non-marine insurance businesses. Merged with ILU to form the IUA in 1998 (See IUA).
  • Loss Adjuster
    A party that is hired by the insurer to investigate the claim and evaluate how much the payout should be.
  • Loss Run
    A report showing all claims, reserves, and payments for a contract over a given period.
  • Managing Agent (MA)
    An organization that manages a Lloyd syndicate. They employ underwriters to determine the risk that the syndicate insures. (This is a term specific to Lloyd's of London.)
  • Managing General Agent (MGA)
    They have underwriting authority to underwrite risk on behalf of an insurer usually under a binding authority. Same as a coverholder.
  • Policyholder
    Also known as an insurance buyer, a policyholder is an individual or business that purchases insurance coverage for the protection of an asset or protection against other uncertainties of loss.
  • Reinsurance
    Reinsurance is when several insurance companies share risk by buying policies from other insurers, i.e., they insure themselves to limit their loss in the case of a disaster. Otherwise, large catastrophes would require large payouts and bankrupt insurers.
  • Slip
    A placing package produced by the broker with all the important information, such as risk, insurance terms, and conditions, which he submits to the underwriter at Lloyd's London or company market carrier. Each carrier takes a percentage of the slip until it is complete.
  • Syndicate
    A syndicate is an insurer or group of insurers based in Lloyd's of London who combine to assume risks in a specialist area. An underwriter will evaluate the potential risk to produce the price of the insurance policy, which is then presented to the syndicate. The syndicate can then decide what percentage of the risk they would like to assume. (This is a term specific to Lloyd's of London.)
  • The Lloyd's Market
    Lloyds of London is the oldest insurance company in the world. What makes Lloyd’s unique is that they operate via syndicates that specialize in different areas of insurance. Imagine the syndicates as storeholders, each of whom takes on a different percentage of the risk. Lloyd's Corporation is a separate entity that is not an insurer itself but acts as a regulator.
  • The Lloyd's Market Associations (LMA)
    The LMA is essentially a union for the market. All Lloyd's managing agencies and members' agents are members of the LMA. They act in the best interests of their members in relation to organizations such as governments, regulators, and the Corporation of Lloyd's itself. They work to identify and resolve issues in the market and work in partnership with Lloyd's and other market associations, offering their expertise from policy wording to the implementation of new technologies. All 51 managing agents within Lloyd's are members of the LMA, and the LMA has technical support teams in six major areas: Underwriting, Claims & Delegated Authority, Market Operations, Legal, Finance & Risk, and HR & Academy.
  • TPA
    A third-party administrator. They are provided with the authority to handle a claim from an insurer. The TPA will have a specialised area of knowledge for example commercial storage insurance. (This is a term specific to Lloyd's of London.)
  • Underwriters
    An underwriter (UW) evaluates risks to establish the price of an insurance policy that will be written. The underwriter's main duties in this regard include collecting background information, analysis of statistical data, negotiating terms with the relevant broker, determining the wording of the policy and ultimately determining the policy premium.
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