1 min read: INSURANCE INFLUENCERS – RICHARD FINAN
Forging ahead to meet customers’ ever-changing needs The ancillary market has traditionally lagged behind...
Lauren Halls joined Arc Legal in 2014 after an athletic career path as a personal trainer. Here, she discusses her role as Development Underwriter and how she has been involved in developing the specialist Police personnel schemes within the business.
Tell us about your role and is there such a thing as a typical day?
When I first joined the business, I was part of the contract management team; this involved setting up new contracts, dealing with rate changes and wording updates. As my time at Arc Legal has progressed, I am now in the position of Development Underwriter. Most of my time is now spent managing accounts, a significant number of those relating to our Police Federation brokers and clients.
The account management responsibilities mean I am in regular contact with clients, managing day-to-day queries, meeting them to discuss their contracts and requirements and reviewing the performance of their contracts. I also work with clients to explore any other product areas which we could provide to meet their needs.
As development underwriter, I analyse the financial performance of contracts to establish whether rates are sustainable for the underwriters and ourselves, and where necessary repricing contracts. It also involves looking at trends in claims and changes in legislation which could impact future claims patterns and adjusting pricing methods to account for this.
I work with a variety of clients, and there are so many different aspects to my job – no two days are the same and this is something I particularly enjoy.
What career or business highlights standout to you since joining Arc Legal?
A highlight of mine was my change in job role as it meant more involvement in the management of accounts. This development recognised my commitment to the business and an advancement in my career to take on more responsibility and a challenge.
Tell us something about yourself that others won’t know about you?
I am a competitive person who enjoys keeping fit and playing sport – before joining Arc Legal I was a personal trainer working in a gym. I still enjoy going to the gym, fitness classes and boot camps.
I have a specific interest in injury prevention and treatment following my studies for a BSc Sports Therapy degree. Over the last 10 years, I have played netball in the Colchester women’s league; where I now manage my team and have completed my umpiring qualification.
Arc Legal has built a portfolio of specialist police personnel schemes. Can you tell us more about this area of the business and how the company has established its reputation as a market leader?
We are keen to ensure that we have the best products in the market by continually reviewing and developing them. We work closely with our brokers and the Police Federations in England and Wales to make sure we are aware of developments in the world of policing and any changes that are introduced which could lead to new cover requirements or processes.
This close relationship enables us to ensure that our specialist product remains up to date and relevant, supporting police officers in the event that they have a legal dispute. Alongside the cover, we are continually developing our claims process to ensure they have a smooth claims journey. For example, our fast track claims process has been developed for claims which have short time frames and therefore need urgent attention. We pride ourselves on our customer service, which along with our product offering, has enabled us to build a strong reputation as market leader for Police Federation legal expenses schemes.
How did Arc Legal get involved in providing Police Federation cover and what attributes makes it a key provider in this specialist area?
While Arc Legal has been providing legal expenses insurance for police officers since 2004, some of our key staff have been involved in the Police Federation sector since the early ‘90s. This relationship has continued to grow, by working with specialist brokers to secure new business and increase the portfolio of Police Federations, we now provide cover to over 100,000 police officers and all special constables in England and Wales. We also provide cover to the States of Guernsey Police, the Police Federation of Northern Ireland and Gibraltar Police and Gibraltar Defence Police Federations.
What have been the main changes and developments in the Police Federation legal expenses insurance market since Arc Legal first launched its products?
While the cover we offer has continued to evolve in response to the changing needs of Police Federation members, one of the most important developments to the product is the inclusion of historic criminal allegation cover.
We provide cover for situations which arise whilst the member is paying into their Federation group insurance. We noticed that there was a requirement to expand this coverage for situations which arose before they were a police officer. Unfortunately, due to the nature of police officers’ jobs, it can make them the target for false or malicious accusations. For some, allegations are not made until after they have become a police officer.
Previously, our cover would not have extended to these situations. We believe the inclusion of historical cover is a vital addition that allows us to provide a police officer with the support and assistance they need to defend these kinds of allegations.
Do you have any plans for future development of the police products?
We are constantly reviewing and developing our products to respond to changes in the policing world. We regularly benchmark our product against competitors to ensure that we are providing the best cover in the market. We are also considering other relevant assistance products to enhance the existing package of benefits we currently provide, such as Gadget Insurance and Excess Protection Insurance.