Q. How much importance does Lloyd's place upon Independent Review?
A. Lloyd's regards an effective process of Independent Review of underwriting and pricing as essential and has embedded the requirement within our Underwriting Standards. Lloyd's recognises that different firms will want to shape their own solutions and this is accepted as long as the process is risk-based and demonstrably effective. Lloyd's has provided guidance notes within lloyds.com to illustrate what it means by an 'effective' process.
Q. Is 'Peer Review' and 'Independent Review' all the same thing?
A. Lloyd's sees a clear distinction between Peer Review and Independent Review in terms of who does which and the focus of the two functions. Peer Review will usually be carried out within the underwriting teams and will focus on whether underwriting authorities and procedures have been followed on individual risks. Independent Review will assess pricing and underwriting of selected risks from a more strategic perspective. For example line size was within authority but was it appropriate for a risk of that quality? Are there trends emerging across the portfolio which will impact targeted performance? Benchmark pricing assumptions may need revision of the factors involved.
Q. What should the terms of reference/ job description of an Independent Reviewer cover?
A. Lloyd's has published guidance on Terms of Reference for Independent Reviewers. This is included in the Lloyd's Guidance on Independent Review document which can be found here. These are not prescriptive nor exhaustive but cover all the points that Lloyd's considers essential for an Independent Reviewer to perform their role effectively.
Q. Does Lloyd's expect all Independent Review to be carried out by personnel who are external to the managing agent concerned?
A. No. Lloyd's is more interested in the independence of the review process being operated and its effectiveness. Lloyd's would expect that the personnel undertaking Independent Review have relevant experience and sufficient time, and are operating within a robust process. For example, a number of managing agents operate internal underwriting review teams. Lloyd's considers it essential that Independent Reviewers are sufficiently empowered to perform their role effectively and that their involvement is not simply a matter of "rubber stamping" the risks reviewed.
Q. How can one become an Independent Reviewer?
A. Lloyd's does not appoint Independent Reviewers, nor does it market the services of any particular individuals seeking review work. It is for managing agents to appoint their own Independent Reviewers, either internally or externally (consultants), and each will have their own criteria that they are looking for in Independent Reviewers. Anyone wishing to become an Independent Reviewer should consult managing agents who may be looking for people to fulfil the role.
Q. How does Lloyd's assess the quality of Independent Review in the market?
A. Lloyd's makes it a condition of business plan approval that the Underwriting Standards are being met, which includes an effective process of 'Independent Review'. Where Lloyd's wants to test that presumption relevant documents will be sought (including the IR terms of reference and recent reports), and conversations will be requested which may include underwriting management, the reviewer(s) concerned and possibly independent non-executive directors from the Managing Agent's Board.
Q. Should the managing agent's board be briefed on Independent Review findings?
A. Lloyd's regards this as very important. Every managing agent's board (or assigned board committee, with NED involvement) should be seeing independent review reports which include conclusions in the context of agreed plan delivery. The board should also be given regular opportunity to speak with the Independent Reviewer(s) directly.
Q. What remuneration should an Independent Reviewer expect to receive?
A. This is entirely a matter for negotiation between the managing agent and the Reviewer and Lloyd's cannot opine on it.
Q. Does Lloyd’s provide a peer review facility for Independent Reviewers’ reports?
A. Lloyd’s is happy to peer review any Independent Reviewers’ reports. Any feedback would be provided exclusively to yourselves with no involvement from managing agents. If you would be interested in doing this, please e-mail PMDfirstname.lastname@example.org.
Q. Why does Lloyd's organise regular conferences for Independent Reviewers?
A. Lloyd's holds Independent Review Conferences twice a year. These are intended to provide opportunities for the Independent Review community and the Lloyd's PMD team to share information and to discuss issues of relevance. Lloyd's wants to ensure that the market's Independent Reviewers have all relevant market information to provide a good context for review of any one managing agent's underwriting activity.
Q. How can one receive invitations to the bi-annual conferences and/or be included on the list of Independent Reviewers published on the website?
A. Please e-mail PMDemail@example.com to sign up to the mailing list for invitations to the conferences. Please note that only those currently undertaking Independent Review work in the Lloyd’s market are eligible to be invited to conferences. We ask that you provide a copy of your current Terms of Reference before we can add you to the correspondence list.
The same criteria apply for those wishing to be included on the list of Independent Reviewers published on Lloyds.com. We also require that a form is filled out confirming your agreement for your details to be published on the website. Please request this form from PMDfirstname.lastname@example.org.