Content Options

View Options

Status: You are viewing the version of the handbook as on 2011-04-29.

ICOBS 8.4 Employers’ Liability Insurance

Application

ICOBS 8.4.1RRP
  1. (1)

    1The general application rule in ICOBS 1.1.1 R applies to this section subject to the modifications in (2).

  2. (2)

    This section applies to:

    1. (a)

      any firm solely with respect to the activities of:

      1. (i)

        carrying out contracts of insurance; or

      2. (ii)

        managing the underwriting capacity of a Lloyd's syndicate as a managing agent at Lloyd's;

      in relation to general insurance contracts and, in either case, including business accepted under reinsurance to close;

    2. (b)

      all incoming EEA firms or incoming Treaty firms falling within (a) including those providing cross border services.

  3. (3)

    In this section references to:

    1. (a)

      an ‘employers’ liability register’ are to the employers’ liability register referred to in ICOBS 8.4.4R (1)(a);

    2. (b)

      a ‘director's certificate’ are to the statement complying with the requirements in ICOBS 8.4.4R (1)(b); and

    3. (c)

      employers' liability insurance include business accepted under reinsurance to close covering employers' liability insurance (including business that is only included as employers' liability insurance for the purposes of this section).

ICOBS 8.4.2GRP

ICOBS 8.4 does not generally apply to activities carried out in relation to a reinsurance contract (see ICOBS 1.1.2 R and ICOBS 1 Annex 1 Part 2 1.1 R) but it does apply to business accepted under reinsurance to close.

Purpose

ICOBS 8.4.3GRP

The purpose of ICOBS 8.4 is to assist individuals with claims arising out of their course of employment in the United Kingdom for employers carrying on, or who carried on, business in the United Kingdom, to identify an insurer or insurers that provided employers' liability insurance by requiring insurers to produce an employers’ liability register. In particular it aims to assist ex-employees whose employers no longer exist or who cannot be located.

Principal obligation to produce an employers’ liability register and supporting documents

ICOBS 8.4.4RRP
  1. (1)

    A firm carrying out contracts of insurance, or a managing agent managing insurance business, including in either case business accepted under reinsurance to close, which includes United Kingdom commercial lines employers' liability insurance, must:

    1. (a)

      produce an employers’ liability register complying with the requirements in (2) and ICOBS 8 Annex 1;

    2. (b)

      obtain a written statement, by a director of the firm responsible for the production of the employers’ liability register, that to the best of the director's knowledge the register has been properly prepared in accordance with the requirements of ICOBS 8.4; and

    3. (c)

      obtain an independent assurance report addressing the accuracy and completeness of the employers’ liability register, prepared by an auditor satisfying the requirements of SUP 3.4 and SUP 3.8.5 R to 3.8.6 R, and addressed to the directors of the firm.

  2. (2)

    For the purposes of (1)(a) the employers’ liability register is required to:

    1. (a)

      include the date upon which the register was produced;

    2. (b)

      include a database which:

      1. (i)

        reliably stores information required by ICOBS 8 Annex 1;

      2. (ii)

        in relation to information required by ICOBS 8 Annex 1 1.1R(1), contains accurate information and, in relation to information required by ICOBS 8 Annex 1 1.1R(2), contains information which faithfully reproduces the information that the firm has; and

      3. (iii)

        has an effective search function which allows a person inputting data included on the register relating to a particular employer over a particular period to retrieve information on the register relating to a potential employers’ liability claim corresponding to that employer and period;

    3. (c)

      allow for requests for information or searches relating to a potential claim to be made by:

      1. (i)

        individuals with the potential claim, or their authorised representative, or

      2. (ii)

        any employer to whom the potential claim relates; or

      3. (iii)

        an insurer which is potentially jointly and severally liable with another firm in relation to the potential claim; or

      4. (iv)

        a relevant insurance intermediary acting for an insurer in (iii);

    4. (d)

      allow for requests by a tracing office which meets the conditions in ICOBS 8.4.9R relating to the use of information on the firm's register to the extent that the information is necessary, and used solely, to enable the tracing office to provide comprehensive searching facilities to its users; and

    5. (e)

      allow for responses to requests or searches in (c) to be provided without delay.

  3. (3)

    For the purposes of (1)(b) and (c) the director's certificate and independent assurance report must:

    1. (a)

      relate to a version of the register as at a date no later than 12 months after it is first produced in accordance with (1)(a); and:

    2. (b)

      be obtained within 3 months of the date in (a).

  4. (4)

    For the purposes of (1):

    1. (a)

      United Kingdom commercial lines employers' liability insurance means commercial lines employers' liability insurance where both the employer’s business was or is carried on, and the employees’ course of employment was or is, in the United Kingdom; and

    2. (b)

      commercial lines business comprises contracts of insurance carried out in relation to persons whose employers' liability insurance relates to a business or profession they carry on.

ICOBS 8.4.5GRP
  1. (1)

    For the purposes of ICOBS 8.4.4R (2)(c) and ICOBS 8.4.4R (2)(d), a firm may put in place appropriate screening on its employers’ liability register to monitor:

    1. (a)

      requests for information and searches to ensure that they are being made for a legitimate purpose by persons falling into one of the categories in ICOBS 8.4.4R (2)(c); and

    2. (b)

      requests from tracing offices to ensure that the information is necessary, and will only be used by the tracing office, for the purposes of providing users of the tracing service with the same information as the firm itself would have provided had the inquirer approached the firm directly.

    If a firm has any reason to suspect that the information is, or may be, being misused then it may restrict the use of the information provided or request its return.

  2. (2)

    For the purposes of ICOBS 8.4.4R (2)(e) the FSA expects that, in the ordinary course, a person searching or making an information request will be provided with a response within one business day of the initial request.

  3. (3)

    In the FSA's view, commercial lines business does not include employers' liability insurance provided for retail consumers, for example, in relation to insurance taken out to cover liability in relation to domestic arrangements such as home help.

FSA notification requirements

ICOBS 8.4.6RRP

A firm must:

  1. (1)

    notify the FSA, within one month of falling within ICOBS 8.4.1R (2), as to whether or not it, or, if relevant, a member of the syndicates it manages, carries on business falling within ICOBS 8.4.4R (1) and, if it does, include in that notification:

    1. (a)

      details of the internet address of the firm or tracing office at which the employers’ liability register is made available;

    2. (b)

      the name of a contact person at the firm and their telephone number or postal address, or both; and

    3. (c)

      the period over which the firm or syndicate member provided cover under relevant policies or, if still continuing, the date that cover commenced; and

    4. (d)

      the firm's FSA Firm Reference Number; and

  2. (2)

    ensure that the notification in (1):

    1. (a)

      is approved and signed by a director of the firm; and

    2. (b)

      contains a statement that to the best of the director's knowledge the content of the notification is true and accurate.

Requirement to make employers’ liability register and supporting documents available

ICOBS 8.4.7RRP
  1. (1)

    A firm must make available:

    1. (a)

      the information on the employers’ liability register either:

      1. (i)

        on the firm's website at the address notified to the FSA in ICOBS 8.4.6R (1); or

      2. (ii)

        by arranging for a tracing office which meets the conditions in ICOBS 8.4.9 R to make the information available on the tracing office’s website; and

    2. (b)

      on request, the latest director's certificate and independent assurance report.

  2. (2)

    If a firm arranges for a tracing office to make information available for the purposes of (1)(a)(ii) the firm must:

    1. (a)

      send to the tracing office copies of its latest director's certificate and independent assurance report;

    2. (b)

      maintain records of all the tracing information and copies of all documents it has provided to the tracing office;

    3. (c)

      retain all legal rights in relation to the ownership and use of the information and documents provided to the tracing office to enable the firm to provide that information or documentation to another tracing office or to make it available itself; and

    4. (d)

      send to the tracing office its FSA Firm Reference Number.

ICOBS 8.4.8ERP

For the purposes of ICOBS 8.4.4R (2)(d) and ICOBS 8.4.7R (1)(a)(ii) the existence of published and up-to-date versions of both a certificate from the directors of the tracing office, stating that the tracing office has complied in all material respects with the requirements in ICOBS 8.4.9R (1) to (6), and an independent assurance report, addressing the accuracy and completeness of the tracing office’s database, may be relied upon as tending to establish that a firm has satisfied the requirement to use a tracing office which meets the conditions in ICOBS 8.4.9R (1) to (6).

Qualifying tracing offices

ICOBS 8.4.9RRP

The conditions referred to in ICOBS 8.4.4R (2)(d) and ICOBS 8.4.7R (1)(a)(ii) are that the tracing office is one which:

  1. (1)

    maintains a database which:

    1. (a)

      accurately and reliably stores information submitted to it by firms for the purposes of complying with these rules;

    2. (b)

      has systems which can adequately keep it up to date in the light of new information provided by firms;

    3. (c)

      has an effective search function which allows a person inputting data included on the database relating to a particular employer over a particular period to retrieve information on the database relating to a potential employers’ liability claim corresponding to that employer and period;

  2. (2)

    maintains adequate records of the director's certificates and independent assurance reports sent to it by firms for the purposes of complying with these rules;

  3. (3)

    has effective arrangements for information security, information back up and business continuity and to prevent the misuse of data;

  4. (4)

    accepts search requests in relation to information in (1) relating to a potential claim from:

    1. (a)

      individuals with the potential claim, or their authorised representative; or

    2. (b)

      the employer to whom the potential claim relates; or

    3. (c)

      an insurer which is potentially jointly and severally liable with another firm in relation to the potential claim; or

    4. (d)

      a relevant insurance intermediary acting for an insurer in (c);

  5. (5)

    provides responses to requests in (4) without delay;

  6. (6)

    has adequate arrangements for providing to a firm, upon request and without delay, a full copy of the information on the database that the firm has provided to it;

  7. (7)

    includes in its published annual report:

    1. (a)

      a certificate from the directors of the tracing office stating whether the tracing office has complied with the requirements in (1) to (6) in relation to the period covered by the annual report; and

    2. (b)

      an independent assurance report addressing the accuracy and completeness of the database, prepared by an auditor satisfying the requirements of SUP 3.4 and SUP 3.8.5 R to SUP 3.8.6 R, and addressed to the directors of the tracing office; and

  8. (8)

    provides to a firm making use of the tracing office for the purposes of ICOBS 8.4.7R (1)(a)(ii):

    1. (a)

      a copy of its annual report promptly after publication; and

    2. (b)

      upon request and without delay a full copy of the information on the database that the firm has provided to it.

ICOBS 8.4.10GRP
  1. (1)

    ICOBS 8.4.4R (2)(b) and ICOBS 8.4.9R (1) require a firm, or a tracing office used by a firm, to have an effective search function in relation to the employers’ liability register database. In the FSA's view an effective search function is one which finds all matches in the register to any specified whole word.

  2. (2)

    For the purposes of ICOBS 8.4.9R (5) the term ‘without delay’ should have the same meaning as in ICOBS 8.4.5G (2).

  3. (3)

    In order to assist firms with their obligations under these rules the FSA has agreed to publish on its website at http://www.fsa.gov.uk/Pages/consumerinformation/product_news/insurance/employers_liability/index.shtml a list of persons providing tracing office facilities which have published the directors’ certificate and independent assurance report referred to in ICOBS 8.4.9R (7).

Updating and verification requirements

ICOBS 8.4.11RRP
  1. (1)

    A firm must notify the FSA:

    1. (a)

      of any information provided to the FSA under ICOBS 8.4.6 R which ceases to be true or accurate; and

    2. (b)

      of the new position, in accordance with the notification requirements in ICOBS 8.4.6 R;

    within one month of the change.

  2. (2)

    A firm producing an employers’ liability register must:

    1. (a)

      update the register with any new or more accurate information falling within ICOBS 8 Annex 1:

      1. (i)

        by virtue of the entry into or renewal of, or of a claim made in relation to, a policy, as required by ICOBS 8 Annex 1 Part 1; and

      2. (ii)

        in all other cases, by virtue of the firm having received that new or more accurate information;

    2. (b)

      make the updated information in (a) available, in accordance with ICOBS 8.4.7 R, no later than:

      1. (i)

        in relation to new or more accurate information arising out of the entry into or renewal of, or a claim made in relation to, a policy, three months from the date of entry, renewal or the date upon which the claim was made; and

      2. (ii)

        in all other cases, three months from the date upon which the firm received the new or more accurate information;

    3. (c)

      update the register, no less frequently than once every three months, and include the date that the register was updated and a statement that the register may be relied on as up-to-date as at a date three months prior to the date upon which the register was updated, or such later date as applicable to the firm;

    4. (d)

      obtain a director's certificate:

      1. (i)

        no later than twelve months after the date of the most recent director’s certificate, obtained in accordance with ICOBS 8.4.4R (1)(b) or this rule;

      2. (ii)

        complying with the requirements, and containing the statement, set out in ICOBS 8.4.4R (1)(b); and

      3. (iii)

        in relation to a version of the employers’ liability register dated no more than three months prior to the date of the director’s certificate;

    5. (e)

      obtain an independent assurance report:

      1. (i)

        no later than twelve months after the date of the most recent independent assurance report, obtained in accordance with ICOBS 8.4.4R (1)(c) or this rule;

      2. (ii)

        complying with the requirements, and containing the statement, set out in ICOBS 8.4.4R (1)(c); and

      3. (iii)

        in relation to a version of the employers’ liability register dated no more than three months prior to the date of the assurance report; and

    6. (f)

      make available, in accordance with ICOBS 8.4.7 R, the director's statement in (d) and the independent assurancereport in (e) no later than 3 months after the effective date of the version of the register to which they relate, in place of the previous certificate and report.

ICOBS 8.4.12GRP

For the purposes of ICOBS 8.4.11R (2)(c) a firm is required to include the date at which it updates the register. However, depending on the firm's processes for making information available for the purposes of ICOBS 8.4.11R (2)(b), the register may only be relied upon as being up-to-date as at a date three months prior to the date on which the firm has updated the register, or such lesser period as applicable to the firm as is consistent with the firm's processes. ICOBS 8.4.11R (2)(c) requires the firm to include a statement as to the date at which the register may be relied upon as containing up-to-date information which can be no earlier than three months prior to the new date on the register, but may be later depending on the firm's circumstances.

Transfers of insurance business

ICOBS 8.4.13RRP

The transferor in an insurance business transfer scheme must provide the transferee with the information and documents the transferor holds in compliance with ICOBS 8.4 in respect of the insurance business transferred.