There is more competition between law firms specialising in re/insurance than ever—a phenomenon that is good news for clients. In the first of a two-part feature, we explore the dynamics behind this change and (in the next issue) what law firms are doing to remain competitive.
The landscape for law firms specialising in reinsurance is changing. Some of the areas that have traditionally delivered healthy pots of fees to law firms, such as large contractual disputes, have fallen by the wayside. Although new areas of legal expertise are emerging, a gap is forcing law firms across the board to diversify and seek new ways to compete on fees to retain clients.
A big reason for this is simply that the industry has become more professional than ever. Contracts are no longer drafted quickly and without forethought (never mind the old ‘back of a beermat’ days at Lloyd’s) but properly drafted by lawyers experienced in the nature of disputes. And on top of this, many reinsurers no longer have the stomach for costly long-winded court battles.
“The reinsurance sector has become steadily less active in terms of big legal disputes over the past five or six years,” says John Nonna, partner at US law firm Patton Boggs specialising in dispute resolution, arbitration and litigation for the reinsurance industry. “There are fewer large disputes these days.”
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Reinsurance, Insurance, Legal, John Nonna, Patton Boggs, Edwards Wildman Palmer UK