The THiNK Blog

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What do Sherlock Holmes and Reinsurance Reviews have in Common?

Apr 27, 2016 10:00:00 AM / by Mindy Epstein posted in Reinsurance, Audit

What do Sherlock Holmes and Reinsurance reviews have in common? At first blush this may seem like an odd comparison.  Sherlock Holmes, is a fictional character famous for his “consulting” detective ways. Reinsurance reviews or audits involve some form of analysis on reinsurance business. This could include analyzing overall business performance, conducting due diligence on a new client or deal validation.  So how do these two worlds collide? Well, Sherlock Holmes is known for his powers of observation and deductive reasoning which are the same traits required by those of us who perform reinsurance reviews.

Since reinsurance reviews can cover a wide range of topics depending on the scope of the review, they require different reference sections from the paper treaty. A thorough investigation, like Sherlock Holmes, involves a combination of detailed observation and detective skills to identify and find the sections needed for the type of review at hand.

 In this post, I’m bringing out my inner Sherlock Holmes to walk you through three types of reviews and the sections required for a successful investigation.

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The Top Five Operational Control Gaps in Reinsurance Administration Audits

Mar 28, 2016 12:00:00 PM / by Matt Hannon posted in Reinsurance, Audit

Administrative audits are a certainty in today’s reinsurance industry.

And whether you’re a seasoned veteran auditor or a first time auditee, you’ll likely have the same question crossing your mind; “What are the findings going to be?”

In many cases, as a reinsurance auditor with new staff or an untested or unproven audit program in place, you want to ensure that your audit team is providing an appropriate attestation of the auditees control environment. 

Whatever the context, to help you prepare for that upcoming audit, I’ve included a list of five common control gaps that our team of administrative audit experts have come across when auditing on behalf of our Reinsurance clients. 

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A Project Manager's Guide to Process & Control Documentation - PART II

Jan 28, 2016 2:00:00 PM / by Matt Hannon posted in Reinsurance, Audit

Hi again,

It’s been some time since my last post, and today I have Part II for you in my series of A Project Manager’s Guide to Process Control Documentation. In my previous blog, I noted that the need for process and control documentation has been a point of focus in recent updates in regulatory requirements, such as Solvency II, so the need to create new or revisit existing process documentation has become a common task. This is particularly important in the insurance and reinsurance arena where mergers and acquisitions have been prevalent over the past decade, and the resulting consolidation of these organizations has increased the number and complexity of processes. As a result, it can seem like a daunting task to understand and document all the processes and controls in place, let alone, identify potential control gaps. My goal with this series is to show that the process preparing this documentation doesn’t have to be so grueling.

In Part I of this series I covered off determining your goal, the required level of detail and discussed how to document processes from a control perspective.

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A Project Manager’s Guide to Process & Control Documentation (aka, that pot simmering on the back burner) PART 1

Oct 28, 2015 4:30:00 PM / by Matt Hannon posted in Reinsurance, Audit

We’ve all been there, we’ve been asked to work on that never ending documentation project that started sometime in the 80’s and gets revived again for the latest regulatory requirement. But believe it or not, it doesn’t have to be a painful exercise, and using this approach I outline below, you can improve your business at the same time.

In PART 1 of this series, I’d like to discuss some of the benefits, impacts, and potential pitfalls of the process of documenting your company’s internal controls, and provide you with some insight on how to get the most out of the project.

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LOGiQ3 Life Insurance & Reinsurance Trend Watch!

May 27, 2015 9:30:00 AM / by Nick Joly posted in Underwriting, Claims, Reinsurance, LOGiQ3, Audit, Life Insurance

Hey there, 

You may or may not know this, but our team at HQ has been growing quite a bit lately, with new team members being added to the Underwriting & Claims department, to the Reinsurance Administration team to even our Audit Consultants! And with new family members comes new perspectives and new expertise from the industries we play in, namely life insurance and reinsurance! So I've decided to put together another great INFOGRAPHIC on what a couple of us have our eyes on, and what trends are on ALL of our radars! Have a look at the top trends that made our list in this half of the year for each of our business lines and share your thoughts with us! We'd love to know what you've got on YOUR #TRENDWATCH

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Internal vs External Underwriting Auditing: PART ll

Dec 16, 2014 12:38:28 PM / by Jennifer Miller posted in Underwriting, Audit

Hi again, 

Not long ago I covered part one in my series of Internal vs External Underwriting Audit and I discussed whether or not They Both Have their Place in Today's Successful Life Insurance Market. As a refresher, we weighed the pros and cons and determined that, YES, a regular balance of internal underwriting audits and external third party audits was the key to success. Today, however, I'd like to highlight some cautionary factors that are important to be aware of when deciding to take the "external" route

External reinsurance audits are a necessary and required exercise, especially when it comes to strengthening the business relationship and understanding the direct insurer’s underwriting processes and procedures. However, they are not entirely independent. The reinsurer has a client relationship to maintain with a direct company, and in light of this relationship, there may be a tendency on the reinsurer’s part to soften the message on the audit results. In addition, reinsurance audits can also tend to be both line of business and product focused, which may deter from providing a holistic or accurate picture of risk assessment.

However, there are quite a number of benefits to having external third party underwriting auditing completed.

A good third party external audit can provide you with:

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Internal vs External Underwriting Auditing: Do They Both Have their Place in Today's Successful Life Insurance Market?

Nov 24, 2014 9:52:55 AM / by Jennifer Miller posted in Underwriting, Audit

The short answer: YES. A healthy combination of regular internal underwriting audits in addition to strategic external third party audits will spell S-U-C-C-E-S-S in today’s competitive underwriting shop. 

It is important to perform regular internal audits for life underwriters in order to not only provide regular useful feedback, but also for all the other reasons (as cited by AHOU’s April 2013 article including 113 insurance company respondents from the U.S and Canada) listed here...  

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Underwriting: To Audit or Not To Audit...

Nov 14, 2014 9:30:00 AM / by Jennifer Miller posted in Underwriting, Audit

... that IS the question! There is a fine balance when auditing and underwriting blend together. It is so important to audit an appropriate and representative number of cases for underwriters in any sized company, to ensure appropriate risk assessment, communication, documentation, consistency and correct applications of underwriting guidelines and manuals are achieved. 

HOWEVER, important to note, being an underwriter myself, we can become pretty antsy! As a general unspoken truth, folks who underwrite naturally tend to come equipped with type A personalities, and as such are generally very astute conscientious worker bees who take their work seriously and ultimately in almost every case, do their best with what they’re given to make the best decision they can. When we know our work is being scrutinized closely in the form of an internal or external underwriting audit. We are, after all, only human, and human error is a part of that, naturally.

It is how those mistakes are communicated and handled, and their results that can take an antsy type A underwriter from audit aversion to willing and open to feedback and change. 

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Oct 22, 2014 1:06:00 PM / by Nick Joly posted in Underwriting, Reinsurance, Outsourcing, Audit, Industry News

Hey again! It’s been a while since my last blog post, and that’s because I’ve been putting together a series of pieces on just exactly what goes on around our office. Since my onboarding with LOGiQ3 this summer, I can’t tell you just how many times I’ve gotten the question: “So what does LOGiQ3 actually do?”, to which my response is: “We’re a consulting and outsourcing company for the Life Insurance and Reinsurance Industries” …. Which is normally followed by one (or both) of the following: 

“But what does that even mean?”

“What is reinsurance?”

If the first thing that came to your mind is one of the questions mentioned above, then this series of pieces is for you. 

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Eastern Claims Conference - Recap

Mar 12, 2013 2:00:00 PM / by Eli Wahby posted in Underwriting, Insurance, Claims, Reinsurance, Audit, Marketing

The Eastern Claims Conference once again kicked off as the first claims conference of the year. It was well attended and the general discussions continued to be 1) managing the various state requirements with respect to Unclaimed Property, 2) Foreign Claims and 3) Accidental Death claims. On Unclaimed Property there’s a lot of effort being undertaken and it’s an ongoing process as companies comply on a state-by-state basis, at least initially.

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