Insurance & Reinsurance

Last verified on Wednesday 10th October 2018

Costa Rica

Roberto León and Esteban Carranza
Vector Legal

    Regulation

  1. 1.

    What are the sources of insurance and reinsurance law?

  2. In Costa Rica, the main sources of insurance and reinsurance law are the Insurance Market Regulatory Statute (LRMS), Law No. 8653 of 1 July 2008, and the Insurance Contract Regulatory Statute (LRCS), Law No. 8956 of 17 June 2011.

    The LRMS establishes the general framework for conducting the business of insurance in Costa Rica, as well as the duty for insurers, reinsurers, producers, local service providers, and cross-border providers to register before or be licensed by the local regulator. It also created the General Insurance Superintendency (SUGESE), the local authority in charge of regulating the market, supervising its participants and protecting consumers.

    The LRCS establishes a modern and consumer-oriented regulation of insurance policies for the local market by covering aspects such as policy requirements and its minimum content, consumer rights and obligations of the contracting parties, policyholder declarations and duties, risk aggravation, general regulations for property and casualty insurance, general regulations for life and health insurance, mandatory clauses for insurance policies, among others. The stipulations of the LRCS are binding, and thus, prevail over any policy content in contrary.

    In addition to the LRMS and the LRCS, specific regulations are issued, and amended when necessary, by the National Council for the Supervision of the Financial System (CONASSIF), the entity in charge of the supervision of the financial system. Among these regulations, it is important to highlight (i) Regulation SUGESE 01-08 Regulation on Authorisation, Registration and Operating Requirements for Supervised Entities by the General Insurance Superintendency, (ii) Regulation SUGESE 02-08 Solvency Requirements for Insurers and Reinsurers, (iii) Regulation SUGESE 03-10 Regulation on the Marketing of Insurance (iv) Regulation SUGESE 06-13 Regulations for the defence and protection of Insurance Consumers, and (v) Regulation SUGESE 08-14 Regulation for the Filing of Insurance Policies. Finally, the market is also regulated by means of administrative circulars issued by the Insurance Superintendent.

  3. 2.

    How and by whom is the insurance and reinsurance market regulated?

  4. CONASSIF and the SUGESE are the main authorities that oversee the insurance and reinsurance market in Costa Rica. CONASSIF is the directing agency of all superintendencies – the Financial Entities Superintendency (SUGEF), SUGESE, the Pensions Superintendency (SUPEN) and the Securities Superintendency (SUGEVAL) – and therefore its main functions, among others, include the appointment and removal of super-intendents, the approval of regulations for the supervised markets, the resolution of appeals filed to the decisions adopted by the superintendents, and to intervene in any regulated entity. SUGESE is the entity in charge of the regulation, supervision and oversight of the insurance market and its participants. Its main functions, among others, include the authorisation of insurers and reinsurers, the licensing of brokers and other market participants, and the imposition of administrative sanctions and penalties to the participants who infringe the LRMS.

  5. 3.

    Is a fronting company required by a foreign insurer in order to write insurance?

  6. In general, the LRMS provides that only authorised and licensed insurers may conduct insurance and reinsurance activities in Costa Rica, which means that a foreign insurer cannot write or offer insurance directly in Costa Rica. However, the LRMS does not impede or forbid any citizen or company to contract insurance abroad from such foreign insurer, as long as the offering and contracting does not occur within Costa Rican territory.

    Aside from this exception, a recent amendment to Regulation SUGESE 01-08 has clarified that international or foreign reinsurers qualify as a cross-border providers with no regulatory restrictions or registration requirements. Before this amendment, registration was exempted only if if a foreign reinsurer or reinsurance broker was directly contacted by the local insurer, but this is no longer the case. Due to this change, and the fact that the LRMS allows a ceding insurer to transfer all or part of the risk under a policy, we consider there is no current restriction for fronting programmes – fronting is not regulated or forbidden in Costa Rica, but this will not exempt the local insurer from certain disclosure procedures and minimum ratings to obtain the corresponding credit for reinsurance.

  7. 4.

    Must reinsurance be written through a locally incorporated entity? Is it a requirement that reinsurance is written through a locally incorporated reinsurer?

  8. No. A recent amendment to Regulation SUGESE 01-08 has clarified that international or foreign reinsurers qualify as a cross-border providers with no regulatory restrictions or registration requirements. The ceding insurer, however, will be subject to certain disclosure procedures and minimum ratings to obtain the corresponding credit for reinsurance.

    Classification of terms

  9. 5.

    Are conditions, conditions precedent or warranties in insurance and reinsurance contracts recognised and what are the remedies for their breach?

  10. Under Costa Rican law, there is no concept of ‘condition precedent’ as it is understood under English law. As general rule of contractual obligations, any breach of a term or a condition allows the affected party to request before a court the specific performance of the obligation of the termination of the agreement, with the applicable indemnity for damages.

    There are, however, certain parameters that must be meet before the offering of an insurance contract. For example, the policy documentation must be registered with SUGESE, the insurer must provide and explain certain pre-contractual information to the consumer, among others. The breach of these obligations does not affect the enforceability of the contract but the insurer can be exposed to a penalty by SUGESE. In group policies, however, the LRCS establishes that if an individual insured does not receive the same pre-contractual information on disputability clauses and policy exclusions as would have under an individual policy, those clauses and exclusions cannot be enforced as a matter of law.

    Duty of good faith, non-disclosure and misrepresentation

  11. 6.

    Is the legal concept of the ‘duty of utmost good faith’ recognised and what obligations is an insurer under prior to placement of the insurance?

  12. Although not expressly indicated within the law, the concept of 'duty of utmost good faith' is recognised as an essential principle of the insurance contract and it is most definitely implied in various provisions of the LRCS.

    As mentioned before, the insurer must comply with certain obligations before the offering of an insurance contract. For example, the policy documentation must be registered with SUGESE, the insurer must provide and explain certain pre-contractual information to the consumer, among others. Also, the insurer is forbidden to request or use genetic information of the applicant or his or her family for risk assessment in life and health policies. The breach of these obligations does not affect the enforceability of the contract but the insurer can be exposed to a significant penalty by SUGESE. In group policies, however, the LRCS establishes that if an individual insured does not receive the same pre-contractual information on disputability clauses and policy exclusions as would have under an individual policy, those clauses and exclusions cannot be enforced as a matter of law.

    Similarly, the insured has the obligation to declare any and all facts and circumstances that can be reasonably considered material for the risk assessment of the insurer, as detailed under article 31 of the LRCS. This duty is limited to circumstances that are known or ought to be known to the insured, and are not within the knowledge of the insurer.

  13. 7.

    What are the remedies for breach of this duty by either party?

  14. Failure of the insurer to provide sufficient pre-contractual information does not affect the enforceability of the contract but the insurer can be exposed to a considerable penalty by SUGESE, as established under article 12 of the LRCS. Also, in the event of a claim, a court of law could determine that such absence of information imposes the insurer the obligation to cover the respective claim.

    As for the insured, pursuant to article 32 of the LRCS, failure to disclose material facts or circumstances during the application process give the right to the insurer to (i) consider the contract as void and retain earned premiums in case of fraudulent or intentional withholding of information; or (ii) propose the amendment of the contract/premiums if the insured failure was unintentional, but retains the right to terminate the contract if the insurer demonstrates that the policy would have never been accepted if all information was fully disclosed during the application process.

  15. 8.

    Does this duty continue to exist following the purchase of insurance (during the operation of the policy)?

  16. Yes, this duty continues to exist after the purchase of insurance. For example, we consider is its reflected in these obligations:

    • The insured must fully cooperate during the claim process (article 43 LRCS).
    • The insured must reasonably mitigate the potential damages after an occurrence (article 44 LRCS).
    • The insured must accurately disclose the material facts and information relating to an occurrence (article 47 LRCS).
    • The insured must reasonably cooperate with the insurer to protect its subrogation rights (article 51 LRCS).
    • The insured must promptly notify any facts or circumstances that reasonably imply an aggravation of the insured risks (article 52 LRCS). This duty is limited to circumstances that are not within the knowledge of the insurer.
    • The insurer has the rights to terminate an insurance contract and retain all paid premiums, if the insured purchases two or more insurance policies over the same risks with the intent to obtain an unfair or fraudulent compensation (article 61 LRCS).

    Reinsurance issues

  17. 9.

    Does local law recognise the following clauses in reinsurance contracts?

    • Follow-the-settlement and follow-the-fortunes clauses.
    • Claims control and claim cooperation clauses.
    • Aggregation clauses.
  18. Local law does not regulate reinsurance contracts or its content. Therefore, the parties are free to include the clauses they deem convenient under the principle of contractual freedom. The local insurers usually enter into reinsurance agreements with international reinsurer; thus, it is common to observe these clauses as commonly used in international markets. 

    Claim process

  19. 10.

    Who has the burden of proof when a claim is made and does the burden switch from one party to another?

  20. According to article 43 of the LRCS, the insured has the burden to prove the occurrence of an insured event and the approximate amount of the loss. The burden then shifts to the insurer to prove whether any exclusions apply that may reduce or eliminate the applicable indemnity or compensation.

  21. 11.

    What is the time limit for providing notice to the insurer of an insurance claim under a policy?

  22. Pursuant to article 43 of the LRCS, the insured has a maximum term of seven working days to notify an insurance claim under the policy. This provision further indicates that if there is an additional delay on the notification, the only effect would be the subsequent delay in the coverage/indemnity process. Therefore, the insurer may only reject the claim if the delay can be attributable to wilful misconduct or gross culpability of the insured.

    Needless to say, this provision has been highly criticised among scholars, as it prevents insurers from acquiring immediate knowledge of an occurrence and conduct the required inspections. Its implications are extremely negative, especially for property and casualty lines.

    As an exception to this general rule, in civil liability policies or coverage, the insured has a time limit of five working days to notify the insurer of any claim by a third party as provided under article 86 of the LRCS. Failure to notify allows the insurer to deny coverage.  

  23. 12.

    Does the same time limit that applies to the insured apply to the intermediary (eg, the broker)?

  24. Although the burden to notify a loss falls on the insured, the same time limit applies if the insured elects to use his or her broker for the notification process. Furthermore, article 8 of Regulation SUGESE 06-13 establishes that the notice of a claim is fulfilled by the insured upon providing notice to the intermediary (either agent or broker) and such intermediary must immediately transfer the notice to the insurer.

  25. 13.

    Is there a time limit within which the insurer must:

    • Confirm cover; or
    • Pay the claim or deny coverage?
  26. Yes, according to article 48 of the LRCS, the insurer has a maximum term of 30 calendar days to confirm or deny coverage by means of a written resolution. As established under Regulation SUGESE 06-13, this 30-day term is counted from the day the insured provides all information and evidence detailed in the policy for the claim process.

    Once the insurer confirms coverage, an additional 30 calendar day term is granted to pay the claim.

  27. 14.

    If so, what are the consequences of a breach of these time limits?

  28. The only consequence would be the obligation to cover penalty interests, as established under to article 48 of the LRCS in relation to article 497 of the Code of Commerce of Costa Rica.

  29. 15.

    What are the answers to questions 11 to 14 in a reinsurance context?

  30. Because local law does not regulate reinsurance contracts or its content, the burden of proof, the specific time limits, and consequences of a breach would follow the stipulation agreed by the parties in the specific reinsurance agreement.

  31. 16.

    Do subrogation rights exist and when do they arise?

  32. Yes, according to article 49 of the LRCS, an insurer who pays a claim immediately subrogates the rights of the insured against the third party responsible for the loss. Subrogation rights arise from the moment the insurer pays the claim, as a matter of law and without the need of additional formalities. As common in international markets, the subrogation rights do not operate in life and health lines of insurance, except in presence of contracts of indemnity. 

    Law and jurisdiction and dispute resolution

  33. 17.

    Do the parties have freedom of contract as to the choice of applicable law and jurisdiction in an insurance contact?

  34. No, insurance contracts must be subject to local law and local jurisdiction, as provided under the LRCS. The parties may elect to submit the dispute to arbitration, but always under local law.

    The possibility of an insurance contract to contain a clause providing for another law and jurisdiction is remote, as the filing of such contract would not be approved under Regulation SUGESE 08-14. But, in the hypothetical event that such contract exists or if it is included within a contract not subject to filing due to its annual premium amount, then this clause would most likely be considered abusive under consumer laws and would be decreed as void by a competent court. Additional, the insurer could be imposed a penalty by SUGESE for marketing an insurance contract that does not comply with local law.

  35. 18.

    Are arbitration clauses enforceable in an insurance contract?

  36. Article 4 of the LRCS mandates that all insurance contracts must incorporate a clause detailing the possibility of the parties to submit their controversies to alternative dispute resolution. For the purposes of arbitration, mediation or any ADR means, this provision causes enforceability problems as ADR procedures require the express written consent of both parties, and therefore, since the policy merely dictates a possibility any of the parties may reject these options.

    Due to the involved costs of arbitration, the reality of our market is that most controversies will fall within ordinary court procedures. As exception to the general practice, some parties may agree the use of arbitration procedures in the case of claims involving significant sums in dispute. 

  37. 19.

    Do the parties have freedom of contract as to the choice of applicable law and jurisdiction in a reinsurance contact?

  38. Yes, local law does not regulate reinsurance contracts or their content.

  39. 20.

    Are arbitration clauses enforceable in a reinsurance contract?

  40. Yes, local law does not regulate reinsurance contracts or their content.

  41. 21.

    Is mediation compulsory?

  42. No, it is absolutely voluntary, but in such event, both parties must agree to its use as detailed under question 18.

  43. 22.

    What is the court structure and what are the relevant time frames for a decision at first instance and each appeal level?

  44. The court structure is as follows: (i) the initial claim must be filed before a civil court of first instance (in case of private insurers) or the administrative court of first instance (in case of government insurers); (ii) if one or both of the parties appeal the initial ruling, the claim is evaluated by the respective Court of Appeals; and (iii) finally, if there are sufficient grounds, the second instance ruling can be evaluated by the First Chamber of the Supreme Court of Justice.

    The time frame for each instance varies depending on how evidentiary proceedings are conducted, the activity of the parties and the time frames of each court. But, in general terms the first instance may take between two and three years, the second instance between one and two years, and the final instance may take between four and seven years to reach completion.

  45. 23.

    Is the judiciary specialised in hearing insurance and reinsurance disputes?

  46. There are no specialised courts for insurance or reinsurance disputes.

  47. 24.

    How common is arbitration in insurance and reinsurance disputes in your jurisdiction?

  48. As mentioned before, due to the involved costs of arbitration, the reality of our market is that most insurance controversies will fall within ordinary court procedures. As exception to the general practice, some parties may agree the use of arbitration procedures in the case of claims involving significant sums in dispute.

    For reinsurance controversies, it is indeed common to include arbitration clauses and follow procedures abroad. In the case of government insurers, certain requirements must be meet in order to agree the incorporation of an arbitration clause in the given agreement.

    Reservation of rights / without prejudice rule

  49. 25.

    Is the concept of a ‘reservation of rights’ valid?

  50. There is no specific regulation of this concept under Costa Rican law. However, upon rejecting a claim, the insurer has the duty to provide a motivated letter to the insurer (article 48 LRCS), which implies that the insurer must disclose all reasons that motivate its decision, as further addressed under Regulation SUGESE 06-13 “Regulations for the defense and protection of Insurance Consumers”.

    Although the decision must be fully motivated, it is important to highlight that the insurer may reserve its rights to fully disclose its evidence in the due court process, in order to avoid potential problems such as witness tampering or intimidation. On this matter, the Constitutional Chamber of the Supreme Court of Justice has recognised the confidential nature of the claim files property of the insurer, even towards the insured.

  51. 26.

    Is the concept of ‘without prejudice’ communications recognised?

  52. There is no specific regulation of this concept under Costa Rican law. It is important to note that even though the insurer has a confidentiality duty towards the insured (article 21 LRCS), the law expressly enables the insurer to disclose information in a claim procedure, limited to the information expressly related to the given conflict.

    Cost, interest, monetary correction, moral and punitive damages

  53. 27.

    Does the loser of a legal action pay the costs of the successful party?

  54. The loser of a legal action generally pays the costs of the process, including procedural expenses and lawyer fees of the successful party. Extraordinarily, the judge may rule that each party covers their own expenses, if the judge considers that both parties have litigated responsibly and in good faith.

    The amount of costs varies substantially from case to case, but attorney fees always follow the approved amounts/percentages approved by the Attorney Bar Association.

  55. 28.

    How is interest typically calculated on an insurance claim?

  56. Pursuant to article 48 of the LRCS, penalty interest on insurance contracts must follow the rules of article 497 of the Code of Commerce. Thus, for insurance contracts entered in local currency colones, the penalty interest will equal the basic rate published by the Central Bank of Costa Rica, and for contracts entered in US dollars will equal the prime rate.

    Because the LRCS is relatively recent, there is no standard rule regarding when the interest is applied. Some courts are leaning towards interpreting that the interest accrues from the moment the claim should have been paid by the insurer, while others have ruled that the interest accrues from the moment of court ruling is final.

  57. 29.

    Is monetary correction applied and, if so, how is it calculated?

  58. Monetary correction may be applied if requested and justified by the insured in its initial claim filed within the court. Such correction is commonly calculated based on inflation rates and would be applied from the moment the claim should have been paid by the insurer

  59. 30.

    Are punitive damages available?

  60. No, punitive damages cannot be claimed or not awarded in Costa Rica.

  61. 31.

    Are moral damages available?

  62. Although there is no provision allowing punitive damages in Costa Rica, moral damages are indeed are available. Under Costa Rican law, moral damages can be granted for the infringement of fundamental rights of individuals and corporations, such as reputation, prestige, fame, feelings, honour or for additional consequences under a given situation, such as suffering, mental health, among others. Compensation for moral damages may be granted if requested and justified by the claimant, but the judge has discretionary powers to determine if applicable or not.

    Intermediaries

  63. 32.

    What is the role and function of an intermediary in an insurance and reinsurance context?

  64. In Costa Rica, intermediaries are expressly regulated under Chapter IV of the LRMS and Regulation SUGESE 03-10 Regulation on the Marketing of Insurance. In order to operate, all intermediaries must be licensed by SUGESE, following the requirements under Regulation SUGESE 01-08 Regulation on Authorisation, Registration, and Operating Requirements for Supervised Entities by the General Insurance Superintendency.

           In general, the role of insurance intermediaries encompasses the promotion, provision and, generally, all acts aimed at perfecting an insurance contract, its renovation or its amendment, as well as the aiding in claim procedures, and all professional advice in connection with these activities (article 19 LRMS). As detailed below, intermediaries can be licensed as agents or as brokers.

    It is important to note that reinsurance intermediaries are not regulated under local law and do not require to follow a licensing procedure to operate in Costa Rica. However, the reinsurance intermediary may not conduct offering of reinsurance products of unlicensed reinsurers, unless the reinsurance broker is directly contacted by the local insurer, as indicated under question 3.

  65. 33.

    On whose behalf do intermediaries act for the purpose of arranging insurance or collecting a claim?

  66. In the case of insurance agents, there is an agency relationship with a given insurer and thus act on behalf of the insurer. Article 22 of the LRMS further indicates that agents may be licensed by insurers under two capacities: (i) Full capacity, where the agent acts under the name and on behalf of the insurer, which means that its actions contractually bind the insurer; or (ii) Diminished capacity, acting solely on behalf of but not under the name of the insurer, which means that the insurer must later validate all acts of the agent for them to become enforceable.

    As for insurance brokers, these intermediaries always act on behalf of the insured and may not represent any insurer. Any insurance broker must be part of a broker company, duly authorised by the SUGESE, and thus, the figure of an independent broker (physical person) does not exist in our jurisdiction.

  67. 34.

    Does the doctrine of ‘imputed knowledge’ exist? 

  68. Although there is no specific provision for this doctrine in our local law, there are certain stipulations that seem to lean towards such doctrine. For example, for the notice of a claim, if the insured provides such notice to the intermediary, Regulation SUGESE 06-13 considers that the insured’s duty is fulfilled with the insurer. Also it could be interpreted that in the case of agents with full capacity and since their actions bind the insurer, the doctrine of “imputed knowledge” could be fully applicable unless the agent exceeds its capacity or in case of fraud.

    Limitation

  69. 35.

    When does a claim under an insurance contract become time-barred and from what point does time run for the purposes of calculating the time bar?

  70. As established under article 17 of the LRCS, all insurance claims are subject to a four-year statute of limitations, which runs from the date the claimed right is enforceable.

  71. 36.

    When does a claim under a reinsurance contract become time-barred and at what point does time run from for the purposes of calculating this time bar?

  72. Since reinsurance contracts are not expressly regulated under local law, the provisions of the chosen legislation in the contract will prevail. If the legislation is Costa Rica, the general provisions of the Code of Commerce would apply and therefore a four-year statute of limitations will apply since the date the obligation is enforceable.

  73. 37.

    In an insurance and reinsurance context, can the limitation period be interrupted or suspended? If so, how?

  74. There are no insurance-specific rules under the LRCS, and therefore, the rules of the Code of Commerce apply. The limitation period can be suspended in certain cases (article 976 Code of Commerce) including in claims (i) against minors when they lack a legal representative; (ii) against soldiers in time of war, (iii) against employees of a company while they hold their position within the company, among others.

    The limitation period is interrupted (article 977 Code of Commerce) upon (i) valid service of a complaint, (ii) upon receipt of a court order to the defaulting party, (iii) upon acknowledgement of the obligation by the defaulting party.

    Other requirements

  75. 38.

    Is there a standard wording or are there mandatory clauses that must be included in insurance or reinsurance contracts?

  76. Yes, the policy must contain the minimum content detailed under article 20 of the LRCS (for example, name of the parties, contractual domicile, covered risks, premium, among others. Also, there are certain mandatory clauses that must be included in the insurance contract, as detailed in the LRCS and in Regulation SUGESE 08-14 Regulation for the Filing of Insurance Policies. For example, the policy must include clauses referring to: (i) the option to solve conflicts by arbitration (article 3, LRCS), (ii) the express clarification on whether the policy coverage is established on an occurrence basis or claims-made basis (article 15, LRCS), (iii) the insured right to request the correction of any mistake of the contract, if it differs from the insurance application (article 23 LRCS), among others.

    In addition, the contract must follow a mandated sequential order for its content, as established under Regulation SUGESE 08-14. Although the insurers may include the terms and conditions deemed convenient – as long as not contrary to the laws – the Regulation establishes a certain sequential order to incorporate these terms and conditions. The rationale behind this obligation aims to facilitate insureds the reading and analysis of the different contracts available in the market under a standard format.

    Reinsurance contracts and their content are not expressly regulated under local law, so there is no standard wording or mandatory clauses.

  77. 39.

    Are there any proposals for new insurance or reinsurance law and, if so, when is it anticipated that they will be enacted?

  78. No, there are no significant proposals for new insurance or reinsurance law at this moment.

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Questions

    Regulation

  1. 1.

    What are the sources of insurance and reinsurance law?


  2. 2.

    How and by whom is the insurance and reinsurance market regulated?


  3. 3.

    Is a fronting company required by a foreign insurer in order to write insurance?


  4. 4.

    Must reinsurance be written through a locally incorporated entity? Is it a requirement that reinsurance is written through a locally incorporated reinsurer?


  5. Classification of terms

  6. 5.

    Are conditions, conditions precedent or warranties in insurance and reinsurance contracts recognised and what are the remedies for their breach?


  7. Duty of good faith, non-disclosure and misrepresentation

  8. 6.

    Is the legal concept of the ‘duty of utmost good faith’ recognised and what obligations is an insurer under prior to placement of the insurance?


  9. 7.

    What are the remedies for breach of this duty by either party?


  10. 8.

    Does this duty continue to exist following the purchase of insurance (during the operation of the policy)?


  11. Reinsurance issues

  12. 9.

    Does local law recognise the following clauses in reinsurance contracts?

    • Follow-the-settlement and follow-the-fortunes clauses.
    • Claims control and claim cooperation clauses.
    • Aggregation clauses.

  13. Claim process

  14. 10.

    Who has the burden of proof when a claim is made and does the burden switch from one party to another?


  15. 11.

    What is the time limit for providing notice to the insurer of an insurance claim under a policy?


  16. 12.

    Does the same time limit that applies to the insured apply to the intermediary (eg, the broker)?


  17. 13.

    Is there a time limit within which the insurer must:

    • Confirm cover; or
    • Pay the claim or deny coverage?

  18. 14.

    If so, what are the consequences of a breach of these time limits?


  19. 15.

    What are the answers to questions 11 to 14 in a reinsurance context?


  20. 16.

    Do subrogation rights exist and when do they arise?


  21. Law and jurisdiction and dispute resolution

  22. 17.

    Do the parties have freedom of contract as to the choice of applicable law and jurisdiction in an insurance contact?


  23. 18.

    Are arbitration clauses enforceable in an insurance contract?


  24. 19.

    Do the parties have freedom of contract as to the choice of applicable law and jurisdiction in a reinsurance contact?


  25. 20.

    Are arbitration clauses enforceable in a reinsurance contract?


  26. 21.

    Is mediation compulsory?


  27. 22.

    What is the court structure and what are the relevant time frames for a decision at first instance and each appeal level?


  28. 23.

    Is the judiciary specialised in hearing insurance and reinsurance disputes?


  29. 24.

    How common is arbitration in insurance and reinsurance disputes in your jurisdiction?


  30. Reservation of rights / without prejudice rule

  31. 25.

    Is the concept of a ‘reservation of rights’ valid?


  32. 26.

    Is the concept of ‘without prejudice’ communications recognised?


  33. Cost, interest, monetary correction, moral and punitive damages

  34. 27.

    Does the loser of a legal action pay the costs of the successful party?


  35. 28.

    How is interest typically calculated on an insurance claim?


  36. 29.

    Is monetary correction applied and, if so, how is it calculated?


  37. 30.

    Are punitive damages available?


  38. 31.

    Are moral damages available?


  39. Intermediaries

  40. 32.

    What is the role and function of an intermediary in an insurance and reinsurance context?


  41. 33.

    On whose behalf do intermediaries act for the purpose of arranging insurance or collecting a claim?


  42. 34.

    Does the doctrine of ‘imputed knowledge’ exist? 


  43. Limitation

  44. 35.

    When does a claim under an insurance contract become time-barred and from what point does time run for the purposes of calculating the time bar?


  45. 36.

    When does a claim under a reinsurance contract become time-barred and at what point does time run from for the purposes of calculating this time bar?


  46. 37.

    In an insurance and reinsurance context, can the limitation period be interrupted or suspended? If so, how?


  47. Other requirements

  48. 38.

    Is there a standard wording or are there mandatory clauses that must be included in insurance or reinsurance contracts?


  49. 39.

    Are there any proposals for new insurance or reinsurance law and, if so, when is it anticipated that they will be enacted?


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