Opinion Former Article

ABI voices concern over Government proposals for an Employers' Liability Insurance Bureau

The ABI has voiced concerns about proposals to set up an Employers' Liability Insurance Bureau (ELIB), as outlined in a Department for Work and Pensions consultation paper published today.

Nick Starling, the ABI's Director of General Insurance and Health, said:

"We recognise how important it is that anyone with an injury or disease claim caused through their work is able to trace their employer or its insurer to claim against. This is why we set up the ABI Tracing Code a decade ago.

"Over 98% of employers' liability claimants are able to claim if they have suffered an injury or disease caused by their work, and insurers pay out £1.5 billion a year in compensation. But we want to do more to help the small number of claimants who cannot trace the relevant insurer. We are discussing with the Government whether an Employers' Liability Tracing Office would achieve this.

"However, we are opposed in principle to the proposed ELIB. It cannot be right that today's law-abiding employers should have to pay for their potentially uninsured competitors or firms that now no longer exist and who may not have had insurance. Such a fund could also encourage some employers not to bother with insurance, or to take the health and safety of their employees less seriously, knowing that a fund of last resort would pay out. In short, there is a serious moral hazard involved in this proposal.

"We will be responding in detail to this consultation, and will continue to discuss with the Government ways in which we can ensure that as much help as possible is available to claimants."

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Notes for Editors

1. Enquiries to:
Malcolm Tarling 020 7216 7410 (Mobile: 07776 147 667)
Erfan Hussain 020 7216 7411 (Mobile: 07712 841 184)
Kelly Ostler-Coyle 020 7216 7415 (Mobile: 07968 364 302)

2. The ABI is the voice of the insurance and investment industry. Its members constitute over 90 per cent of the insurance market in the UK and 20 per cent across the EU. They control assets equivalent to a quarter of the UK's capital. They are the risk managers of the UK's economy and society. Through the ABI their voice is heard in Government and in public debate on insurance, savings and investment matters.

3. An ISDN line is available for broadcasts.

4. More news and information from the ABI is available on our web site, www.abi.org.uk.

More Articles by Association of British Insurers (ABI) ...

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