We only ever act for policyholders, so we’re always conflict free.
Wynterhill’s partners are seasoned lawyers who have not only drafted and negotiated policy wordings, but also guided insurance claims and disputes from initial notification to the highest appellate courts both in this country and abroad.
Our policy drafting is influenced by our claims experience; our claims work benefits from our policy drafting experience.
We understand the reliance you place on your insurance brokers in negotiating policies and progressing claims.
Our approach to working alongside insurance brokers is simple and straightforward:
- We know our strengths.
- We respect insurance broker’s skills.
- We collaborate to make the best of both.
A policy needs to reflect the realities of your business and the risks it faces, we have experience of achieving just that.
We regard prevention as better than cure.
Many of the problems that can arise when you claim under a policy can be avoided by some investment in getting the policy drafting right at the time at which you buy it.
Insurance policies are a product, the result of a commercial bargain, and our lawyers have drafted and negotiated market-leading policy wordings for household-name companies.
We ensure that your policy’s words reflect the realities of your business.
We understand and work with what insurers are willing, and can be persuaded, to provide.
We put forward practical, realistic, enhancements to existing or proposed cover.
We consider the policies you buy as a whole, creating seamlessly integrated cover without potentially expensive gaps or overlaps.
Preparation is key to everything we do.
The first stage of preparing for a claim is getting the policy drafting right.
Once a claim scenario arises we can identify which policies to notify and on what basis.
We craft notifications to maximise policy response and minimise the risk of challenge.
We can help steer the direction of insurer’s claim investigation.
We will challenge them to focus on the essentials.
We will drive them to confirm cover quickly.
We advocate commercially realistic views of policy obligations which frequently overcome narrow readings of policy terms designed to reject claims. In this way claims, including claims worth hundreds of millions of pounds, can be successfully resolved without litigation.
We can be a “one stop shop” for disputes.
For most business and people, disputes are an unwelcome distraction. By never losing sight of your commercial objectives we aim to make the process as quick and easy as it can be. We can also advise on litigation funding options and cost risk mitigation options.
If insurers contest or deny cover:
- We will make an early realistic assessment of the merits of your claim.
- We will pursue all realistic routes to getting that claim paid.
- We will ensure that the costs of a dispute stay proportionate to the likely outcome.
Unlike most firms, Wynterhill offers a one-stop shop for litigation, comprising solicitors and barristers. But if that’s not what you require, then that’s no problem. We also accept instructions from other firms of solicitors to represent policyholders in court or work alongside other barristers. We have the flexibility and focus to provide the team that works best for you.
The Financial Ombudsman
We don’t routinely assist with complaints to the Financial Ombudsman Service, but we know someone who does.
There may be situations where you do not necessarily require legal advice from us and would be more appropriately assisted by Smarterclaims Ltd in attempting to resolve a dispute yourself at a cost effective price, using standard form documents.
Smarterclaims Ltd is run by Steve Smart. Steve has spent 35 years in the general insurance industry. He was the Legal Director for the insurer AIG in the UK for ten years and has previously served on a number of legal and regulatory bodies, including the FSA’s General Counsel’s forum and the Bank of England’s Financial Markets Law Committee. He is currently the non-executive Chairman of Lancashire Insurance Company UK and regularly features on national and regional radio as an insurance claims expert, including LBC’s Money Hour and BBC Radio’s Sound Advice.
Although Steve is a qualified Solicitor and practices as such at Wynterhill, he does not practice as a Solicitor at Smarterclaims Ltd and Smarterclaims Ltd is not a law firm and is a separate business to Wynterhill. The fact that Smarterclaims Ltd is not a law firm means that it is not regulated by the Solicitors Regulatory Authority (SRA) so you will not get the same level of regulatory protection as you would as a client of Wynterhill.