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Lloyd’s Gets Go-Ahead To Sell Insurance in Arkansas

2 min read

A Saline County Circuit Court judge agreed last week with former Arkansas Insurance Commissioner Jay Bradford that Lloyd’s of London underwriters are approved to sell insurance in the state.

If you recall, the case stemmed from a lawsuit filed in 2013 by Little Rock attorney Gene Ludwig, who was seeking a class-action certification. He argued that thousands of policies should be invalidated because, under his reading of the law, the Lloyd’s of London underwriters weren’t approved by the Arkansas Insurance Department.

Ludwig represented more than a dozen named plaintiffs against several brokers who sold surplus lines of insurance through the Lloyd’s of London marketplace.

But Saline County Circuit Judge Gary Arnold tossed the case on a summary judgment order, meaning the case never made it to a jury.

“Each of the Plaintiffs’ claims is predicated on the assumption their policies were placed with unapproved insurers,” Arnold wrote. “From the undisputed record, each of the subject policies was actually placed with approved insurers.”

Even though Bradford and the Insurance Department weren’t named as a defendant in the lawsuit, Bradford vigorously disagreed with the allegations and maintained the Lloyd’s underwriters were approved. He even issued a bulletin in July that reiterated his point.

Ludwig said in a statement to Whispers last week that “if we end up losing this case, perhaps we will have at least succeeded in raising public awareness about the inability of a policy holder to identify, sue, and execute a judgment against the actual alien insurers of ‘Lloyds of London’ surplus lines policies.”

One of the attorneys for the insurance brokers, David Wilson of Little Rock, told us that he is pleased with the ruling.

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