New Zealand Insurance Market Conditions and Trends 2015 - DAC Beachcroft

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New Zealand Insurance Market Conditions and Trends 2015

Published On: 4 June 2015

The last 12 months has seen the insurance industry undergo considerable change which is only increasing in pace. This year’s edition of DAC Beachcroft New Zealand's Insurance Market Conditions and Trends report represents key developments during that time across a broad range of sectors and focuses on some trends that will continue to take effect through the 2015-2016 year.

Australasia has seen real growth in underwriting capacity in the last 12 months, with new and innovative insurers increasing competition within the markets on both sides of the Tasman. In both New Zealand and Australia, after a period of significant catastrophe losses, including the Canterbury earthquakes and Queensland floods, 2014 was comparatively benign for claims. That decrease in claims has allowed a renewed interest in property and cat cover in both countries. Underwriting confidence has also returned to the financial lines’ markets.

The higher Courts in New Zealand continue to deliver important judgments concerning property reinstatement that have global claims and underwriting ramifications. We continue to advise clients with regular updates in this sector and this publication selects a few of those key cases, including EQC v ICNZ [2015] NZCA which has addressed settlement of claims for flooding risks in Canterbury.

New and imminent regulation for New Zealand business will affect underwriting and claims. 2014 saw the introduction of the financial markets conduct regime with new obligations for directors and officers coming into force through 2015. Significant workplace safety changes are also proposed for later this year and are seen as a major issue for directors and their companies in the coming 12 months.

We have been busy with leading insurance decisions in the Courts, including the Supreme Court decision of Body Corporate 398983 v Zurich [2014] NZSC 147, which considered whether the policy sum insured was inclusive or exclusive of monies received from the EQC; and, settled questions concerning the scope of Court intervention in disputes governed by arbitration clauses in the Supreme Court decision of Zurich v Cognition Education [2014] NZSC 188.

I am also delighted that Mark Anderson and Mathew Francis have joined the partnership. Maintaining a high performance team is integral to the success of our New Zealand office and Mathew and Mark bring to the firm the knowledge and expertise needed to further develop and grow our well-rounded business. They reflect the work undertaken by all our staff, who have contributed to our clients’ successes and this publication.

Finally, we celebrated five years in the market this May 2015. Thank you to all in the industry who have been a part in growing our fantastic team.

We trust that you will find the publication of assistance and please contact us if you have any questions.

Download the full report.

If you would like to receive a hard copy of the publication, please email Tessa Ambler.