Insurance: corporate and regulatory in London
Clifford Chance LLP's non-contentious insurance practice handles matters including transactions, joint ventures and restructuring work; the team has been particularly active in advising clients on Brexit-related matters, and also advises on transactions involving insurance-linked securities. The practice is led by Katherine Coates, Ashley Prebble, and Hilary Evenett; Coates has 'an incredible breadth of knowledge across many different areas of insurance' and also serves as the firm’s global head of insurance, while Prebble and Evenett are deputy co-heads. Narind Singh and Cheng Li Yow are also praised by clients.
‘Strong and long established non-contentious insurance practice. Practice leader Katherine Coates was one of the pioneers of the development of specialist corporate insurance practices. The team is one of the strongest in the market.’
‘The CC team never fails to deliver. Industry leading lawyers, advice and delivery. It is a pleasure to work with the insurance team and beyond.’
‘ChengLi Yow and her team consistently produced top notch legal advice that was clear, concise yet comprehensive on matters related to life insurance estate management. The advice was also provided with fast turnaround response times (to the extent possible). We would recommend her and her team any day.’
‘The Clifford Chance insurance team has a great breadth and depth of experience. We have used them for our Brexit project and we know we can rely on their knowledge of the UK and European insurance markets.’
‘We have mainly worked with Narind Singh. He is very user friendly – he’s responsive, pragmatic and helped to steer us through some tricky issues.’
‘Team has a very deep bench and can access specialist knowledge in other areas of law with expertise in insurance. The team are able to manage highly complex projects concurrently and cost effectively.’
‘Katherine Coates has an incredible breadth of knowledge across many different areas of insurance but is especially strong on the regulatory side – Her experience in the space gives her an ability to advise beyond purely legal matters.’
Domestic & General
Legal & General
- Advised AXA group on the integration of the XL Group following its €15.3bn acquisition and global restructuring of its commercial lines business.
- Advised Swiss Re on the sale of the Reassure Group to the Phoenix Group for £3.2bn.
- Advised Pool Reinsurance Company Limited (Pool Re) on establishing a protected cell company in the UK to issue ILS linked to pure terrorism risk, the first time this category of risk has been transferred by ILS in the form of a catastrophe bond.
Singled out for its work in marine insurance, Clyde & Co LLP also handles corporate and regulatory matters across a range of insurance sectors. Recent work for the team included advising on Part VII transfers, transactions and restructurings; it has also handled complex matters relating to the establishment of a new insurance broker and the creation of novel insurtech products. Former practice head Andrew Holderness retired in 2019, and Ivor Edwards now leads the team. Stephen Browning is another key individual in the practice, and William Hogarth has expertise in both the corporate and regulatory sides of the market. Legal director Tom Tippett handles a number of matters involving technology.
‘The practice has real depth of experience at partner level with a particular focus on Lloyd’s of London regulatory and mergers and acquisitions work. In addition, the Clyde team also has excellent regulatory and transactional experience in the wider London companies market and, increasingly, in the field of “insurtech” transactions. Partners are supported by an excellent team of associates. When you work on a transaction with this team you really feel that they provide full commitment and a personal touch, which makes all the difference.’
‘Ivor Edwards is the key partner in the Clyde team for insurance transactional advice. He is also one of the few stand-out partners in this field in the wider London legal market. With a background of having worked in the insurance industry before commencing his legal career, he combines a powerful intellect and legal knowledge with the necessary pragmatism to get complex deals completed.’
‘William Hogarth is one of the emerging stars of the London corporate insurance legal market. A young partner with a particular focus on cutting-edge transactions, he is increasingly seen as a go-to person for regulatory and transactional deals with an innovative aspect. In addition to regulatory and transactional work, he has a particular focus on ILS and tech sector collaborations with the insurance sector.’
‘Unparalleled knowledge and experience in Part VII insurance business transfers. In a recent transaction, their support was invaluable and took so much of the burden of the in-house team.’
‘Ivor Edwards has an extremely well developed understanding of insurance law and regulation. In my experience Ivor has always been able to find a pragmatic solution to any problem.’
McGill and Partners
Motor Insurers’ Bureau
Motability Operations Limited
- Advised on the establishment of McGill and Partners.
- Advised Skyline Partners in relation to a new targeted weather parametric insurance platform, as well as a number of other new and innovative parametric insurance products in both the agriculture and renewable energy sectors.
- Advised MIB on the deployment of its new cloud-based enterprise resource planning and finance solution.
Hogan Lovells International LLP is recommended for its work on insurance business transfers, M&A transactions and restructurings; the practice has also been particularly active in advising on Part VII transfers related to Brexit. Practice head Charles Rix has deep experience in insurance matters, and recently advised on the first life insurance restructuring under a scheme of arrangement. Steven McEwan and Tim Goggin are also key contacts; McEwan advises on pension de-riskings and the use of insurance to mitigate bank capital requirements, while Goggin handles transactions and portfolio transfers. Elsewhere, solicitor advocate Jamie Rogers is a key name for sanctions-related insurance matters.
Assicurazioni Generali S.p.A.
Lloyds Banking Group/Scottish Widows
- Successfully completed a Brexit reorganisation for Tokio Marine including the transfers of EU branch businesses of two insurers to a new Luxembourg insurer, under one Part VII scheme, removing the Brexit-related legal and regulatory risk in connection with the EU branch business.
- Advised Canada Life, the UK insurance business of the Canadian financial conglomerate Great-West Lifeco, on the sale of a £2.7bn life insurance business to Scottish Friendly, a UK friendly society.
- Successfully completed an extremely complex transaction for Sompo International involving three insurance business transfers under a single scheme and a cross-border merger.
Norton Rose Fulbright handles a broad range of insurance matters, including M&A, restructurings and regulatory issues as well as those related to insurtech. The team also advises on Lloyds’ market matters including transactions and start-up issues. The practice is led by James Bateson, who has over 30 years’ experience in this area. David Whear has expertise in handling M&A and restructurings, while Nicholas Berry leads the London insurtech team, and Bob Haken advises on the implementation of the Solvency II directive. Matthew Foster, Maria Ross and Noleen John are the other key partners in the team.
‘Our primary contact is Bob Haken, who strikes a great balance between being highly competent technically, instilling great confidence that he will provide legally robust advice, whilst also being very pragmatic and working hard and creatively to find feasible and defensible positions to commercially difficult issues.’
‘Deep insurance and risk knowledge, combined with a flair for innovation makes the team the best in the business.’
‘Nicholas Berry is a pragmatic, thoughtful expert on all things insurtech and risk management. He’s become an essential part of our business as we roll out internationally.’
‘The team is a diverse team with a number outstanding individuals,’
‘Maria Ross is superb. Maria provides sound advice all the time in an efficient and effective manner. I always feel that we are pulling in the same direction.’
Aquiline Capital Partners
- Advised Lloyd’s underwriter Arch in relation to “Blue Vault”, a new solution to provide insurance protection for the secure vault storage of private keys for digital assets such as Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.
- Advised MS Amlin on a complex group restructuring, a complete redesign of the group’s governance and management structure and the coordination of communications with 14 regulators globally.
- Advised RGA on the acquisition of Omnilife Insurance Company Limited, a life insurer in the group protection market. Also acting for Omnilife on the implementation of its decision to exit the group risk market and the arrangements with Legal & General whereby policyholders were invited to insure with Legal & General.
Slaughter and May
Slaughter and May’s team is well-regarded for its work on corporate insurance matters including M&A and restructurings; many recent transactions have featured private equity involvement. The practice is led by Jonathan Marks, who, in addition to handling restructurings and transactions, also advises on de-risking issues. Craig Cleaver focuses on M&A and risk transfer transactions, while Robert Chaplin has a varied practice advising insurers, reinsurers and government departments on insurance matters.
‘The lawyers are in every respect miles ahead of anyone else. Technical expertise, tactical nous and strategic thinking are unparalleled.’
‘The all round professional brilliance of the people puts them in a league of their own. Robert Chaplin is extraordinarily good.’
‘Extremely engaged and proactive. Some good associates coming up through the ranks to support the partners.’
‘As would be expected, it is a very slick team operation. Different disciplines and expertise are combined and it appears seamless from the client perspective with key messages being relayed from key contact points. What really stands out is the amount of experience the team can bring to bear on our circumstances. It is hard to conceive of circumstances that may catch the team out.’
‘Nicholas Pacheco is able to process highly complex issues and play them back in a very user-friendly way. This is invaluable in bringing the business along on the journey and means progress is often made quickly and efficiently.’
‘Craig Cleaver – charmingly understated and no nonsense, but really knows his stuff. Very easy to deal with.’
Legal & General
Marsh & McClennan
- Advised Prudential and M&G plc on the demerger of its UK & Europe business (M&G Prudential) from Prudential plc, resulting in two separately listed companies.
- Advised Allianz on its acquisition of Legal & General Insurance Limited, the general insurance business of Legal & General Group Plc.
- Advising Walmart on the buy-in and subsequent buy-out of the Asda Group Pension Scheme with Rothesay Life, a specialist insurer of defined benefit pension schemes.
Willkie Farr & Gallagher (UK) LLP’s London practice handles insurance matters including transactions, Part VII transfers and longevity risk reinsurance issues. The team is led by Joseph Ferraro and also includes Nicholas Bugler and Andrew Tromans; Bugler is active in insurance-related transactions, as well as matters related to insurance-linked securities, while Tromans has a broad practice covering non-contentious insurance work including transactions and joint ventures. Kirsty MacLean was promoted to partner in early 2020 and is noted for her work on de-risking transactions; she is praised for her 'incredible industry knowledge'.
‘Highly trustworthy and reliable team of corporate insurance lawyers. Top tier advisers for corporate, M&A, reinsurance, outsourcing and joint ventures relating to the insurance sector.’
‘Nick Bugler and Andy Tromans are impeccably positioned to advise international groups on UK corporate insurance, regulatory and Lloyd’s matters. Joe Ferraro and Jennifer Tait are top notch advisers on complex insurance capital markets and ILS matters. Willkie UK’s ability to leverage the firm’s market leading New York corporate insurance practice makes the firm an obvious choice for insurance groups with US and UK operations.’
‘Willkie Farr & Gallagher have exceptional expertise in the longevity insurance and reinsurance industry across both the UK and US. They work fiercely in support of their clients’ interests and tirelessly to drive deals to completion.’
‘Kirsty Maclean has incredible industry knowledge which makes her an invaluable asset to anyone who works with her. She has a solution-focused approach to transactions which produces results that work for her clients long into the future.’
‘Andy Tromans has an excellent, straight-forward and practical mindset which cuts through the complexity that can often confuse insurance industry transactions. Clients and counterparties alike value this approach, and his longstanding knowledge of the industry and its players is always at his fingertips and can be relied upon to help in every deal.’
Aspen Insurance Holdings Limited
Fidelis Insurance Holdings Limited
Marsh & McLennan Companies (MMC)
Lancashire Insurance Group
Prudential Financial, Inc.
- Advised Carlson Capital on its disposal of Barbican Group Holdings Limited to Arch Capital Group Ltd.
- Advised Aspen Insurance Holdings Limited on its agreement to be acquired by certain investment funds affiliated with Apollo Global Management LLC.
- Assisted MS Amlin plc, the specialist global (re)insurer, with the creation and establishment of a new Bermuda-domiciled special purpose reinsurer, Viribus Re Ltd, to provide collateralised capacity support for MS Amlin Syndicate 2001’s global reinsurance portfolio.
Allen & Overy LLP’s insurance practice acts for insurers and reinsurers on the corporate and regulatory sides of non-contentious insurance mandates, with a focus on life insurance matters. The group's work in this area encompasses transactions, many of which have cross-border elements, as well as some of the largest longevity swaps and longevity reinsurance agreements in the market. On the regulatory side, the practice is engaged in advising clients on Solvency II matters. Practice head Philip Jarvis is global head of insurance and has all-round experience in the field, while Kate McInerney, who became a partner in mid-2019 and was previously seconded to the Financial Conduct Authority, has expertise in matters related to Solvency II.
Other key lawyers:
‘The senior lawyers in the A&O corporate insurance team are knowledgeable and bright but what marks them apart is that, in our experience, unlike most other corporate insurance teams in the City, they do not view themselves as implementors of others’ decisions but they actively and constructively contribute to the discussion and debate, albeit that they recognise the primacy of the client to make decisions. They actively seek to identify not just risk but also opportunity and bring clear thinking on not just technical but also strategic issues.’
‘Philip Jarvis – I particularly value Philip’s input and insight because he doesn’t just identify risks but proactively looks to help us factor them into our assessment by suggesting mitigation strategies or ensuring that the risks involved are well understood and so can be appropriately priced. That sort of contribution is not the norm.’
Aegon / Scottish Equitable
Lloyds Banking Group Pensions Trustees Ltd
MS&AD Insurance Group
- Advised Lloyds Banking Group Pensions Trustees Limited on longevity insurance and reinsurance arrangements to protect certain Lloyds Banking Group pension schemes from the cost of unexpected increases in the life expectancy of its members.
- Advising Prudential on an appeal process following the High Court’s decision not to approve the Part VII transfer in relation to the sale of £12bn annuity liabilities to Rothesay Life.
- Advised Aegon on a long-term longevity risk reinsurance agreement with Canada Life covering €12bn of in force liabilities.
Ashurst assists insurance and reinsurance clients with a range of complex corporate and regulatory matters, including longevity reinsurance work, acquisitions, pension scheme mergers, and the extension of ancillary own fund structures. In addition, the group also provides advice to clients on issues such as Brexit and Covid-19. Much of the London team's work involves cross-border issues, and it frequently collaborates with the firm's offices around the world. The London team is led by Adam Levitt, who focuses on corporate transactions; senior associate Akiko Morioka is also a key name to note.
Other key lawyers:
‘A great team to work with – Ashurst repeatedly and consistently deliver to the highest standard.’
‘They are progressive, client focused, practical and organised, technically strong, commercial and effective.’
‘Adam Levitt is impressive – you want Adam on your side, looking after your interests.’
‘Akiko Morioka shines.’
Ing Bank N.V.
JP Morgan Asset Management
Lloyds Bank Plc
Pension Insurance Corporation (PIC)
Punter Southall Group
- Advised Pacific Life Re on an extension and renewal of a cutting-edge Ancillary Own Funds structure under Solvency II.
- Assisted an international reinsurer with a substantial longevity reinsurance deal, with complex collateral support arrangements.
Under practice heads Paul Edmondson and Chris Southorn, CMS advises prominent insurers on transactions including M&A as well as life, annuity and pension risk transfers; it also handles regulatory matters including mandates involving insurtech and Solvency II. Mike Munro and James Parker lead on the team’s de-risking transactions, while Angela Greenough, who joined the team in late 2019, adds to the team’s expertise in regulatory matters. Pippa Tasker, who focuses on insurtech matters, and risk transfer specialist Jenny Nanalal were recently promoted to the partnership, and Owen Ross joined the practice from Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (UK) LLP.
‘Angela Greenough is the most pragmatically focused lawyer I have ever worked with, she really understands how to simplify complex technical and distil the salient points that are of real concern.’
‘Strong on reinsurance and collateral structuring.’
‘Chris Southorn – very strong commercial lawyer, with impressive knowledge and experience.’
‘Paul Edmondson – gives great insight into regulatory issues.’
‘Lots of experience, especially in the risk transfer market and in particular longevity reinsurance. Their integrated team covers the whole transaction (including collateral aspects) which sets them apart from other firms I have worked with in this area. Also, a large team with lots of bench strength.’
‘I’ve worked closely with Jenny Nanalal and Mike Munro. They are both very responsive, really know their stuff and are just very nice to deal with.’
Legal & General
Pacific Life Re
Pension Insurance Corporation
Willis Towers Watson
Zurich Insurance Group
- Advised Scottish Friendly on the acquisition of a legacy book of life and pensions business from Canada Life in a transaction involving assets worth £2.45bn.
- Advising Stanhope Pension Trustee Limited on a £4.7bn pension buy-out transaction with Rothesay Life. This was the UK’s largest ever pension transfer deal, and secured the benefits of over 39,000 people.
- Advised Legal & General Assurance Society Limited on a highly complex, multi-jurisdictional bulk annuity transaction with the Rolls Royce UK Pension Fund.
DAC Beachcroft LLP
DAC Beachcroft LLP stands out in the market for its expertise in non-contentious insurance matters related to technology. The team’s recent work includes advising on data protection, cyber risk, and insurtech matters; the team also handles insurance transactions and distribution deals. Practice head Mathew Rutter leads on regulatory matters, while Mark Neville focuses on transactions. Rhiannon Webster and Jade Kowalski are singled out for their work on data protection mandates.
‘Generally, the team has strong knowledge in the insurance sector and particularly in the specialised insurance commercial contract area. It is incredibly competitive in terms of pricing and gives cost transparency at a time when watching the pennies is even more important. Their client service skills generally top the large firms, in my experience.’
Overall, the team is incredibly friendly and DAC are a nice bunch to work with. Very receptive to any feedback and they are always striving to excel at client service. In this regard, they are among the best out of all the firms that I work with as they realistically set out what the expectations are. Kay Chand (Legal Director) in particular is fantastic to work with – incredibly communicative, with great knowledge in the IT sector, always works incredibly hard to meet deadlines but is very clear as to expectations. She also looks at matters holistically to ensure that all bases are covered rather than focusing on only particular points because they are deemed to be “legal” while everything else is commercial – that is a valuable trait in external counsel.’
‘Mark Neville (Partner) is always great to work with – he always strives to go the extra mile to provide what is needed from a client perspective and has a deep well of experience in the insurance sector.’
‘They understand the insurance market and as a team they deliver a seamless combination of corporate finance, restructuring, regulatory and governance advice.’
‘Mathew Rutter’s advice was invariably prompt, clear and concise, and the wider support the team gave was exceptional.’
Arthur J Gallagher
- Acting for HSBC in extending its 10-year distribution deal with Aviva. This deal covers policies such as home, travel and commercial insurance via HSBC’s online and mobile channels, in branches and over the phone.
- Advising Covea Insurance on the extension of its relationship with John Lewis Finance to include a white-labelled motor insurance product arrangement.
- Acting for Arthur J. Gallagher, a global insurance brokerage, risk management and consulting services group, on two of its key recent acquisitions; the UK aspects of the acquisition of Bermuda based Horseshoe, and the acquisition of Anthony Hodges Consulting Limited.
Debevoise & Plimpton LLP is recognised for its work advising on M&A transactions including deals complicated by cross-border elements. The team also provides advice on regulatory issues arising from transactions and investments. The practice is led by Clare Swirski and James Scoville; Swirski leads on the regulatory work, while Scoville focuses on transactions. Ben Lyon also handles transactional matters.
Other key lawyers:
‘Ben Lyon – stands out because nothing is ever too much trouble for him.’
‘Claire Swirski – great technical knowledge.’
‘Strong team with the balance of James Scoville and Clare Swirski at the top with Ben Lyon supporting them both with great energy and enthusiasm.’
‘The Debevoise team have deep understanding of the particular needs of certain clients. It is this expertise in particular that in my mind differentiates the Debevoise team from their competitors. This is particularly true for PE firms with a US base as the transatlantic expertise of Debevoise is especially strong.’
‘I have been impressed with all the individuals at Debevoise, in particular the senior team I have worked with on a number of projects (James Scoville, Ben Lyon and Clare Swirski). The Debevoise team have deep experience and expertise, but to my mind what sets them apart from other teams is the flexible and innovative approaches they have suggested and a deep understanding of their client’s needs. Their work is bespoke for each client rather than a broad generic approach.’
‘Encyclopedic technical knowledge of insurance regulation. Very responsive. Able to summarise deeply technical issues, and aid the business teams in making key decisions.’
‘I have worked with Claire Swirski and Ben Lyon. Both stand out partners on client service with the right balance of outstanding legal advice with commercial pragmatism.’
‘The team has a unique combination of deep knowledge in both M&A and insurance. The team understands and provides valuable advice regarding the most complicated aspects of both. The team is also very commercial but still looks out for the interests of its clients.’
‘Ben Lyon is a rising star in the London insurance M&A market. He is one of the very few attorneys with a deep understanding of both M&A and insurance transactions. During the past few years, Ben has led Debevoise’s representation of clients in many of the large and noteworthy M&A transactions in the Lloyds insurance market. Ben is a commercial-minded attorney who can navigate high-level strategic issues but is still willing to take the time to understand the important details.’
Lovell Minnick Partners
American International Group
AmTrust Financial Services
Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB)
GreyCastle Holdings Ltd.
Prudential Financial Inc. / Prudential Financial Insurance Company
Swiss Reinsurance Company Ltd.
Third Point Reinsurance Company
- Advised Lovell Minnick Partners on its take-private deal valued at $285 million for Charles Taylor, a leading provider of professional services to the global insurance market.
- Advised AmTrust Financial Services on the merging of its Lloyd’s business with Canopius. The transaction will create a top-five insurer at Lloyd’s with combined premiums of approximately $2.2bn.
- Advised Hamilton Insurance Group on its acquisition of Pembroke Managing Agency and Ironshore Europe DAC from Liberty Mutual.
Herbert Smith Freehills LLP
Herbert Smith Freehills LLP advises on insurance M&A, Part VII transfers and regulatory issues, including matters related to Brexit. The team also has a specialism in advising on life insurance tax issues. Practice head Geoffrey Maddock is active across the practice area, as are Barnaby Hinnigan and consultant Alison Matthews. Of Counsel Grant Murtagh is also recommended for his work on reinsurance transactions, while Samantha Brown handles pension de-risking mandates.
‘Very good industry knowledge. Especially strong on technical regulatory aspects.’
‘Alison Matthews gives very detailed and a thorough regulatory advice. She really knows her stuff.’
‘HSF are technically very strong, but also easy to deal with. They have helped us to work through a number of challenging issues, including providing board-level support during the Covid-19 pandemic. They are trusted advisers.’
‘HSF have good bench strength. The person we have dealt with most is Grant Murtagh. He understands our business, has excellent judgement and has the experience and expertise to make a real difference on the big decisions.’
‘The HSF team is fantastic – excellent quality, commercial approach and they really want to get you to the solution you need. They put in the extra mile and really try to deliver everything the client wants.’
‘Barney Hinnigan is an outstanding and pragmatic lawyer who has become a trusted adviser for us.’
‘The team has deep knowledge of our sector with some members of the team having done secondments in our industry. The are joined up and user friendly, offering pragmatic advice and think laterally with commercial objectives in mind.’
Canada Life Group (UK) Limited
Financial Guaranty Insurance Company
Marsh & McLennan
Pension Insurance Corporation
The Canada Life Assurance Company
Willis Towers Watson
- Advising ReAssure on the Part VII transfer of approximately 1m insurance policies and £28bn of assets from Legal & General Assurance Society.
- Advised Scottish Widows in relation to the transfer of the portion of its insurance business sold in the EEA (other than the UK) on an EEA passporting basis to a subsidiary incorporated in Luxembourg.
Linklaters LLP acts for several leading insurers and reinsurers on transactions and contracts as well as providing regulatory advice. The team has led the Mergermarket rankings for global insurance M&A deals by volume and value for several years. Kanyaka Ramamurthi leads the practice, which has significant overlap with the firm’s wider corporate team. Insurance specialist Duncan Barber has over 20 years’ experience in the sector and advises on matters including transactions and longevity risk reinsurance issues.
Other key lawyers:
‘Excellent sector knowledge and very client-focused team.’
‘Kanyaka Ramamurthi is extremely calm, pragmatic and very client-focused. An excellent asset to the firm.’
‘The team, including Duncan Barber, is exceptionally strong and well respected in the market. Linklaters is different and special; each lawyer I have worked with has a unique ability to gets to grips with their client’s commercial imperatives quickly and anticipate their needs before they even know what those needs are. They are all so enthusiastic about insurance and regularly keep the lawyers in our company up-to-date on know-how and changes which impact the business.’
‘Duncan Barber is, of course, well established, respected, extremely intelligent and capable. But he is also patient and kind. When he is advising me, I feel like I am his only client and that my questions are important and relevant. In the very rare event he does not know something off the top of his head, he is honest and says so and always finds the answer. I trust him and call on him regularly.’
‘High quality advice across the team. Very knowledgeable about the industry and the market. Accordingly, advice is generally very pragmatic and spot on, in addition to any deliverables being of top standards. They always consider who is best for the task at hand.’
‘A modern, energetic practice. Genuine insurance expertise.’
‘A top notch corporate and capital markets practice with extensive insurance expertise.’
Lloyds Banking Group
Equitable Life Assurance Society
- Acting for AXA on the sale of AXA Life Europe, a closed book variable annuities provider regulated in Ireland.
- Acted for the Trustee of the Rolls-Royce UK Pension Fund in connection with its bulk annuity contract with LGAS.
- Advised Utmost Life and Pensions Limited following the acquisition of Equitable Life Assurance Society, in connection with the Equitable Life’s scheme of arrangement.
Pinsent Masons LLP
Pinsent Masons LLP is experienced in a wide range of corporate and regulatory matters related to insurance, including M&A, de-risking issues and reinsurance transactions. The practice is also noted for its ability to handle complex reorganisations and transfers of insurance businesses, including those with cross-border aspects. Practice head Hammad Akhtar is particularly recommended for his work on reorganisations and transfers, and also advises on high-value insurance transactions. Hannah Brader and Madhu Jain focus on M&A in the insurance space, while Iain Sawers leads on regulatory matters.
‘The team have worked together for a number of years, which lends itself to a smooth, joined up client experience.’
‘Hannah Brader – pragmatic, calm and gets to the nub of the issue. Feels like an extension to the internal team.’
‘They are an experienced team, with strength in depth, fantastically led to provide a seamlessly responsive service across specialisms.’
‘Hammad Akhtar leads the team superbly, and gives you full confidence that everything is under control. Hugely experienced and knowledgeable, he always gives the impression of having thought through all the possibilities and anticipated any potential issues before they arise, taking mitigating action where possible and appropriate. His responsiveness and engagement is second to none, to the point that he makes you feel like you are his sole client, despite knowing that he is dealing with multiple transactions. He is very hands-on, and always fully up to speed on every detail, but ensures that work is carried out at more junior levels where appropriate to ensure cost-efficiency.’
‘The partner with whom I have worked more regularly is Hammad Akhtar who always provides reliable and considered advice, both in meetings and also in written form. He is an extremely approachable individual who is very easy to work with. He also commits to a project completely such that is very available for advice, even at short notice.’
British Gas Insurance
Marsh & McLennan Group
Royal London Group
Standard Life Aberdeen
- Advised Royal London Group on the complex cross-border reorganisation of its legacy Irish and German business in preparation for Brexit.
- Advised Zurich on the sale of its UK Retail Wealth business to Embark Group.
- Advising Royal London on the proposed consolidation of the United Friendly Industrial Branch sub-fund on terms that involve the distribution of the inherited estate to eligible policyholders.
RPC’s broad practice handles insurance matters encompassing M&A, part VII transfers and restructurings, many of which relate to Brexit. On the regulatory side, the group's recent work includes advising insurers on the implementation of the EU’s Insurance Distribution Directive. Matthew Griffith now leads the practice and handles transactional, commercial and regulatory insurance work. Former practice head James Mee continues to lead on most of the team’s M&A work, while David Wallis focuses on transactions involving private equity.
‘The team has a wealth of experience in the insurance sector and is, I think, a leader in this area.’
‘Their depth of knowledge is excellent, but their client focused approach and client friendly work means that they can deal directly with the business.’
BPL Global (UK headquartered international insurance broking group)
RSA Insurance Group
Direct Line Group
AssuredPartners (UK arm of AssuredPartners Inc., one of the largest insurance brokers in the US)
- Advised RSA Insurance Group in relation to the Brexit project, including the establishment of its new European insurer, RSA Luxembourg (RSAL), and the Part VII transfer of a significant portion of RSA’s European business to RSAL.
- Advised Cove Programs on its merger with Ascent Underwriting, a transaction backed by Preservation Capital Partners.
- Advised international broking group, BPL Global, on the Brexit restructuring of its European Economic Area business operations, including the establishment of a UK branch of BPL Global’s French subsidiary, Berry Palmer & Lyle SAS.
Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner LLP
Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner LLP is active in advising clients on transactions involving insurers and reinsurers, and also advises the related warranty and indemnity insurers. The team also handles matters involving restructurings and insolvencies in the insurance space, including advising on solvent schemes of arrangement and the winding-up of insurers. The practice is led by Geraldine Quirk and Adam Bogdanor; Quirk is singled out for her expertise in business transfer schemes, while Bogdanor has a broad practice encompassing all areas of corporate insurance work. Associate Laura Jackson is also noted for her transactional expertise.
Other key lawyers:
‘BCLP offers an exceptional combination of regulatory and M&A legal and market know how. The cooperation of the BCLP team including other Departments such as corporate, tax and litigation is excellent.’
‘Geraldine Quirk: Top lawyer in the field of regulatory insurance matters. The advice is always on the highest Level of specialist and market expertise but also very practice oriented at the same level.’
‘Gerry Quirk is very experienced in the field of Part 7 transfers and the like and she is accessible and quick to respond with a practical approach.’
Collinson Insurance Group
Randall & Quilter (R&Q)
Sun Life Financial of Canada
- Advised the majority shareholders of Nelson Holdings Limited on its sale to leading specialist insurance and reinsurance broker, Miller.
- Advised Randall & Quilter Investment Holdings Limited on the acquisition by its subsidiary, Accredited Insurance (Europe) Limited of the entire issued share capital of MPS Risk Solutions Limited.
- Advised longstanding client AIG as M&A warranty and indemnity insurer in relation to Charles Taylor and The Standard Club’s sale of Charles Taylor Managing Agency to Premia Holdings Ltd.
Dentons' corporate insurance and regulatory team was strengthened in 2019 with the addition of Adriana Cotter from Sidley Austin LLP. Cotter brings experience in corporate and regulatory insurance work to the team, which is led by Martin Mankabady. The practice recently assisted insurers and brokers on a range of insurance issues, including providing advice on cutting-edge insurtech matters. In addition to serving as team head, Mankabady is global head of the firm’s insurance practice, and the team frequently collaborates with the firm’s offices around the world. Katharine Harle is another key contact; having previously worked for the Financial Services Authority, she has expertise in regulatory matters.
‘They are generally available as needed at all hours. I feel as if they will answer additional queries without making us feel guilty on fees which is a real positive. They are also amenable to answering questions recently outside of a deal context on very precise points, for example on tax.’
‘Martin Mankabady is excellent at checking in on the service we are receiving and keeps very on top of the deals we are doing. He is also very personable and approachable.’
‘Excellent responsiveness and always on the ball. Their project management capabilities were vital to the success of the project.’
‘A real willingness to help and to be proactive. Very good knowledge of the law.’
Mobius Life Limited
Vitality Life Limited
John Lewis Finance
- Advised a global broker on a significant and complex multi-jurisdictional outsourcing arrangement.
- Advised an international insurer on a cross-border merger and portfolio transfer of commercial insurance business.
- Advised on the start-up of a new insurer, assisting with its business modelling and corporate governance arrangements, and helping it navigate the UK regulatory regime.
DLA Piper handles corporate and regulatory work in the life and non-life insurance sectors, including M&A, longevity transactions, Part VII transfers and regulatory mandates. In 2019, Prakash (PK) Paran relocated to the firm's New York office and Melanie James took over as head of the London-based team. James and Paran serve as global co-chairs of the firm’s insurance practice, with the London and New York teams collaborating on cross-border matters. Amrit Mclean joined the team in late 2019 from Aviva and now leads the newly-established de-risking group; her practice includes advising clients on Solvency II. Jane Childs recently joined from Mayer Brown International LLP to lead a new international financial lines insurance disputes group.
‘Partner-led with a good combination of transatlantic capability and ability to outsource elements of transactions such as due diligence to UK regional offices to help control costs.’
‘Mel James – strong technical knowledge, user-friendly and reliable.’
‘Very client-oriented team. Excellent international capabilities.’
‘Strong insurance expertise that is overlaid on top of the firm’s well-regarded corporate practice, as well as offices in many jurisdictions.’
Aviva Plc & Aviva Ventures
Munich Re (HSB/Munich Re)
- Advising a number of global and European insurance sector groups on Brexit contingency planning, restructurings, and reorganisations, and on a broad range of regulatory issues that have arisen as a result of Brexit.
- Advising a European insurance group on the disposal of its Belgian non-life insurance business.
Led by Hugo Laing in London, Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP’s insurance team also includes partners from the firm’s offices in Manchester, Cardiff and Nottingham. Laing’s practice focuses on insurance transactions, in addition to advising on regulatory matters. The firm’s recent work spans the gamut of non-contentious insurance work, including M&A, all-risks buy-outs and longevity insurance and reinsurance transactions. Simon Brooks serves as co-head of the firm's global insurance practice.
‘Excellent and in-depth knowledge of consumer insurance.’
‘Paula Gaddum – provides great insight and a wise counsel.’
‘Paula Gaddum (Partner) is very responsive, highly knowledgeable and really understands our business.’
Pollen Street Capital
Specialist Risk Investments Limited
Generali Worldwide Insurance Company Limited
Legal & General
Lloyds Banking Group
Gefion Insurance A/S
Guarantee Protection Insurance Limited
Sedgwick International UK
Health Shield Friendly Society
- Advised Markel International Limited on its acquisition of the entire issued share capital of Caunce O’Hara & Company Limited and also the entire issued share capital of Caunce O’Hara Limited.
- Advised JLT Benefit Solutions Limited on its disposal of Independent Trustee Services Limited and Leadenhall Independent Trustees Limited to Gala Holdings Limited.
- Acted for Legal & General Assurance Society on the all-risks buy-out of the Rolls Royce Pension Scheme.
Fielding an 'experienced team with in-depth market knowledge', HFW is active across the insurance market, including advising on Lloyds’ market transactions as well as M&A deals and joint ventures. The practice is led by Carol-Ann Burton, who is particularly recognised for her work on regulatory matters. Ashwani Kochhar advises on a wide range of non-contentious insurance matters while associate William Reddie handles both regulatory and corporate work.
‘The key strength of the team is in helping build new products in general insurance. Especially in new fields of insurance when they ensure the product and distribution method meets all the complex regulatory and compliance requirements of the FCA.’
‘William Reddie – excellent pro-active engagement at the start of financial services product development, that saves time and resources by limiting the scope to plausible developments. With a friendly and engaging manner Will contributes to the solution rather than just saying no you cannot do that.’
‘Experienced team with in-depth market knowledge.’
‘The team responses promptly and efficiently, particularly Will Reddie.’
‘This is a firm that has been involved in some of the major transactions in Lloyd’s and the London market and function seamlessly. Their regulatory experience is second to none.’
‘Ashwani Kochar: practical advice and understanding of complex transactions with a skill in reducing agreements to simple terms.’
‘Carol-Ann Burton: former regulator helping with navigating the PRA/FCA landscape.’
‘This team are experts in our Industry as well as their own. The work the have undertaken in M&A was faultless and at the same time pragmatic. The depth of knowledge in the Insurance Team is without rival in our sector.’
‘HFW apply a personal touch and take an interest in the core business rather than just the legal or contractual aspects. Their level of knowledge instils confidence in the advice they give.’
Miles Smith Holdings Limited
ILS Investment Management Limited/Armour Group
The Underwriter Group Limited
Abu Dhabi National Insurance Company (ADNIC)
Asta Managing Agency Limited
Occam Underwriting Ltd (previously Sciemus Ltd)
Helodrium Limited and its network of international brokers
- Advising Markerstudy on its acquisition of the Co-Operative Group Limited’s carrier, CIS General Insurance Limited.
- Advised The Underwriter Group Limited on the sale of The Underwriter Insurance Company to DARAG Deutsche Versicherungs und Ruckversicherungs AG.
- Advised the management sellers of the TUE Companies on their MBO sale to private equity firm, Pollen Street Capital.
Mayer Brown International LLP is active across the spectrum of non-contentious insurance mandates including transactions, risk transfers and the establishment of new reinsurers. The team is also involved in work pertaining to insolvencies involving insurers and brokers. The practice is led by Devi Shah and Colin Scagell; Shah leads on insolvencies and restructurings, while Scagell handles transactional work. Rebecca Bothamley is valued by clients for her knowledge of transactional liability issues.
Other key lawyers:
‘Commercial, responsive, on the ball.’
‘Colin Scagell – likeable, keen, upbeat, efficient.’
‘Devi Shah has many years of experience in restructuring insurance businesses. She has an impressive knowledge of the sector and is really great to work with.’
‘Their advice has been very concise and allowed us to focus on key important elements and avoid dwelling unnecessarily on matters that could make things unproductive. Its worldwide resources have been especially helpful in dealing cross border issues involving multiple jurisdictions.’
‘Colin Scagell, the partner who heads up the team appears to have an abundance of experience in dealing with regulator(s), and has kept giving us clear guidance whenever we need it along the way in the long process of securing any required regulatory approval.’
Tokio Millennium Re
Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan (OTPP)
Argenta Private Capital Limited
Premia Holdings Ltd
Pension Protection Fund
Ernst & Young
- Advised Tokio Marine Holdings, Inc. on several aspects of the $1.5bn sale of its reinsurance platform, Tokio Millennium Re, to RenaissanceRe Holdings Ltd.
- Advised Nationwide Mutual on the formation and capitalisation of Geneva Re Ltd., a Bermuda reinsurer launched as a 50-50 joint venture with Ryan Specialty Group.
- Advised Beazley on its strategic investment of a 30% stake in Hong Kong based Lloyd’s of London coverholder, Pegasus Underwriting Ltd.
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (UK) LLP
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (UK) LLP’s London team frequently acts alongside the firm’s New York City office to advise on insurance matters including transactions and the establishment of new platforms. The insurance team, led by Robert Stirling, also acts alongside the corporate, tax, employment and financial departments to handle complex deals.
Phoenix Group Holdings
MMA Holdings UK
Liberty Mutual Insurance Company
- Advising Phoenix Group Holdings on its acquisition of ReAssure from Swiss Re (and, indirectly, from MS&AD which holds 25% of ReAssure) for $4.1bn.
- Advising AIG on the establishment of a new Lloyd’s platform for the reinsurance of high-net-worth risk.
- Advised Liberty Mutual on its disposal of the Ironshore platform at Lloyd’s of London and in EMEA to Hamilton Insurance Group.
Bristol-based Burges Salmon LLP advises insurance clients on matters including transactions, joint ventures and Brexit-related regulatory challenges. Tom Dunn leads the practice and is also head of the firm’s financial regulation practice; his work focuses on insurance regulations. Former practice head Kari McCormick departed to Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP in 2020.
Ecclesiastical Insurance Group
Royal London Group
The Exeter Friendly Society Limited
AXA Insurance UK plc
Financial Services Compensation Scheme
The MAPFRE group (including MAPFRE Asistencia, Abraxas and InsureandGo in the UK)
- Advising AXA Insurance UK PLC on FLOURISH, an Innovate UK funded research project investigating the public acceptance of driverless cars.
- Advised on Embark’s acquisition of certain businesses in the Zurich group.
Led by Stephen Carter, boutique city firm Carter Perry Bailey LLP advises brokers and insurers on insurance matters. A large proportion of the firm's work is cross-jurisdictional, and Carter specialises in regulatory and contractual insurance work.
‘Quick to respond. Exceptional service, with commercial nous.’
‘Experienced professionals who genuinely value their client relationships.’
‘Stephen Carter – a veteran in the re/insurance sector. Combines great knowledge/experience with commercial understanding.’
Community Reinsurance Corporation Ltd
Hampden Group/Maas Lloyd Schadeverzekeringsmaatschappij
Litmus Analysis Ltd
NDI Insurance & Reinsurance Brokers
NPA Insurance Company
Lime Street Broking Group
Sentry Insurance, A Mutual Company
- Representing an overseas bank in relation to the novation of credit insurance covering a substantial international loan.
- Advised an insurance company on sanction issues.
- Advising an overseas broker on compliance issues and acting on the creation of a new UK broker owned by the client.
Under the leadership of Mark Everiss, Cooley (UK) LLP handles a range of matters including advising on warranty and indemnity policies, handling Brexit-related policy transfers, and issues arising from insurer and reinsurer insolvencies. Everiss focuses on insurance and reinsurance policy wording and coverage disputes, while senior counsel David Kendall advises on all elements of non-contentious insurance and reinsurance matters.
The Lloyd’s Market Association
Municipal Mutual Insurance
The Mediterranean Insurance and Reinsurance Company Limited
- Advising the Lloyd’s Market Association and various insurers, brokers and policyholders on the impact of Brexit on its members and formulating ways of addressing the problems presented by the UK’s exit from the EU.
- Advising Rollings Butt, the administrators of Med Re, an insolvent reinsurance company, on all insurance/reinsurance and claims matters arising from the insolvency.
- Advising Ambridge, a leading underwriter of transaction insurance, on numerous transactions involving warranty and indemnity and tax indemnity insurance.
DWF advises clients in the insurance sector on corporate and regulatory matters, including Brexit planning issues. The team is jointly led by Richard Burger, who focuses on regulatory issues, and Mel Sims, who handles insurance M&A work. Burger is praised as a 'exceptional lawyer and an outstanding professional' with a 'wide and loyal client base'.
‘DWF has helped us in addressing every perceived gap in our regulatory and compliance structure in a measured, professional and non-judgemental manner. There are many auditors in the regulatory sector but not many “doers” and DWF can help with the actions needed to improve.’
‘Richard Burger – a class act. Always available, works 24/7, calm, measured and professional at all times. Client is first and foremost at all times.’
‘Richard Burger has a wide and loyal client base which is richly deserved, as he is an exceptional lawyer and an outstanding professional.’
PSC Insurance Group Limited
Insurance Holdings Limited
Liverpool Victoria General Insurance Group
PSC UK Holdings Limited
Alsford Page and Gems (Holdings Limited)
- Advised ASX-listed PSC Insurance Group Limited, on its acquisition (via its UK subsidiary, PSC Rainbow Holdings Ltd) of Paragon Insurance Holdings Limited and its two subsidiary companies Paragon International Insurance Brokers Limited and Paragon Brokers Bermuda Limited.
- Advised the board of Liverpool Victoria Insurance Group (LVGIG) on aspects of the acquisition by Allianz of a majority interest in LVGIG from Liverpool Victoria FS and related transitional arrangements.
- Advised Alsford Page & Gems (Holdings) Limited, a subsidiary of ASX-listed PSC Insurance Group Limited, on its acquisition of Mar Risk Services Limited.
Led by Barney Reynolds, Shearman & Sterling LLP is involved in a range of non-contentious insurance matters, often working with the firm’s global network of offices. The team’s work encompasses both corporate and regulatory matters. Thomas Donegan is another key partner, focusing on regulatory mandates, while Reynolds is noted for his knowledge of Brexit-related matters; he previously advised MPs on the legal aspects of Brexit.
Other key lawyers:
‘Incredibly quick to respond to queries, which are often submitted to them out of the blue. They are also good at getting the right team members involved in the work, as opposed to some firms where the same person tries to cover every area about which they are approached.’
‘Good level of detail in their work – sufficient to close out the issue, succinct enough to be capable of being absorbed quickly and commercially. Thomas Donegan has been particularly helpful.’
Fairfax and IIFL Holdings
ICE Clear Europe
- Advising IIFL, an Indian brokerage and wealth management operation, and its investor Fairfax in connection with a two step reorganisation of the IIFL group.
Stephenson Harwood has a strong track record in advising on acquisitions in the insurance space. The team is led by Andrew Edge, with corporate partner Sam Gray also highly active in the practice; Gray handles insurance-related transactions, joint ventures and equity fundraisings.
Other key lawyers:
Arthur J. Gallagher & Co
The Ardonagh Group Limited
Ed Broking Group Limited
Broker Network Partners Holdings Limited
Bowmark Capital LLP
- Advised Gallagher on its purchase of the entire issued share capital of Stackhouse Poland Group Limited and Inspire Underwriting Limited.
- Advised Broker Network (part of Bravo Group) on the acquisition of the Bennett Christmas Group of insurance brokering and underwriting companies.
- Advised mid-market private equity company Bowmark Capital on the sale of Aston Lark to Goldman Sachs’ Merchant Banking Division.
Based in Guildford, Stevens & Bolton LLP handles insurance work including transactions, commercial agreements between insurance and technology companies, and contracts for GDPR compliance. Gary Parnell leads the team and has expertise in transactions, outsourcings, and technology-related insurance issues. David Steinberg is another key partner and is known for his work on insolvencies and restructurings in the insurance space.
Other key lawyers:
‘S&B provide an excellent service and practical advice, without trying to over complicate matters. The team are helpful, client friendly lawyers.’
‘Gary Parnell is my go-to for commercial insurance queries. He is excellent to work with, technically strong and pragmatic.’
Allianz Insurance plc
Qatar Insurance Company
- Acted for specialist insurance broker Stackhouse Poland on its sale to US-headquartered global insurance brokerage and risk management firm, Arthur J. Gallagher & Co.
- Acted for specialist insurance and employee benefits provider, Unum, on its deal with Square Health, under which Unum launched a new app-based service in conjunction with its insurance offerings, providing employees with fast, simple, remote access to GPs and health support.
- Acting for global insurance group, Qatar Insurance Company/QIC Global on its general commercial contract work, including reviewing and negotiating insurance-specific contracts and assisting with GDPR compliance.