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Insurance Companies and the Modern Slavery Act

17 January 2017. Published by Jonathan Charwat, Associate

As the new financial year is soon to arrive, companies will soon have to file their Slavery and Human Trafficking (SHT) statements.

RPC has previously written about their general applicability and now will examine its impact on insurance companies.

Whilst insurance is probably not a sector where the risk of SHT is as high as retail or mining, the increasingly globalised way in which the insurance industry operates means that supply chains are becoming longer, further reaching and more complex.

This development in supply chains is a result of increases in the number and form of investment vehicles and the growth of insurance in new markets and new territories. In particular, the use of outsourced call centres and of claims handling arrangements, often in developing countries, is increasingly providing cheaper models of insurance business, using low-paid and/or temporary work. Such arrangements can complicate the supply chain and create physical barriers between a director, who signs the SHT statement, and a supplier's (or a supplier's supplier's) employee, whom the statement aims to protect. 

RPC's Patrick Brodie is conducting a seminar on Modern Slavery on 19 January 2017 at RPC's offices. This will look at how the SHT statement's narrative can act as a pillar for good corporate governance, employee engagement and regulatory integrity. For further information please email us here.

This article was co-authored by Dil-veer Kang, Trainee Solicitor in Corporate Insurance & Financial Services.