Wendy Allen-Rodney

Wendy is a Consultant in our London office, who specialises in insurance and reinsurance coverage. She qualified in England and Wales in 1999 and was previously a partner at another City law firm.

She advises insurers on complex and high-value claims under the full range of political risk policies (including expropriation, contract frustration and terrorism), as well as trade credit policies, financial institutions (FI), directors’ and officers’ and crime policies. Also, Wendy has considerable experience of advising both cedants and reinsurers in relation to claims under reinsurance contracts, both facultative and treaty.

Much of her work involves advising on policy validity and coverage issues such as non-disclosure/misrepresentation, aggregation, notification/attachment, conditions precedent, exclusions and claims control/cooperation. Wendy works with clients to resolve issues through negotiation, settlement/commutation, or formal dispute resolution, and also assists clients with recovery actions following payment of claims under political risk and trade credit policies.

Wendy started her career as an underwriter at Sun Alliance & London Insurance plc (1978–1991) and has also held the position of Run-off Manager, Special Projects Unit, at Trade Indemnity plc (1994–1995). Her experience working in the industry for more than 14 years before training to be a solicitor means that she has a strong understanding of insurance and reinsurance operations.

She is a member of the Forum of Insurance Lawyers (FOIL) and became a Fellow of the Chartered Insurance Institute (CII) in 1991, when she won the CII Boleslaw Monic Reinsurance Prize and the London Insurance Institute Reinsurance Group Prize for her exam papers.

Market recognition

  • Legal 500 UK 2010 notes that Wendy has “very good technical reinsurance knowledge, blended with legal acumen”. Legal 500 UK 2009 states that she “has the ability to manage claims in the best possible way”.

Work highlights

  • Advised insurers on coverage under the full range of political risk policies, including an expropriation of oil rigs in Venezuela; an expropriation of crude oil in the Republic of Sudan; an expropriation of mines in Bolivia; a major terrorist attack in Kenya; contract frustration in relation to a national project for the government in the Republic of Congo; and malicious damage to property in Pakistan.
  • Advised insurers on coverage in relation to some very significant trade credit losses in a number of territories including Singapore, Greece and Brazil.
    Often political risk and trade credit policies are reinsured into the London Market under facultative reinsurance contracts. Therefore, apart from the usual sort of policy validity and coverage issue such as non-disclosure/misrepresentation, aggregation and date of loss/attachment, Wendy has advised on various reinsurance issues that have arisen.
  • These include untangling the contractual relationships, the practical consequences of claims control/cooperation provisions, and issues that arise when different laws apply to the insurance and to the reinsurance.
  • Significant experience in advising insurers in relation to FI mis-selling claims, in particular in relation to ‘pension switching’. In these cases the fact pattern has been very complex and the numbers/volume of sales has been very high, so Wendy has worked closely with both the insureds and the loss adjusters in order to collate and analyse the facts, and assess liability.
  • Considerable experience advising cedants and reinsurers in relation to reinsurance claims. For example, Wendy has advised London Market reinsurers in relation to several claims emanating from the US and arising from respiratory diseases, which, due to the long tail nature of the liabilities, have become all the more complicated because of the reorganisations/changes of ownership of the parties over the passage of time. Issues that Wendy has advised on under non-proportional reinsurance contracts include disputes as to the number of ‘occurrences’, the extent of cover for defence costs, the erosion of the retention and limitation.