Online dispute resolution: transforming the insurance industry

Laura Keily, Founder, Immediation

The rise of consumerism has seen the global insurance industry grow substantially in the last decade. Deloitte’s 2019 Insurance Outlook Report placed the Australian insurance market for FY18 at an estimated net income of $3.5B. Despite these promising statistics, economic concerns both in Australia and globally have prompted insurance companies to turn to technology and innovation as a way to improve operational efficiency and reduce costs. 

Disputes are inevitable but ripe for innovation

Business disputes are an inevitable part of insurers’ daily operations, meaning insurance defence litigation is a huge burden on insurance companies. To combat the ever-increasing financial burden of such litigation, in-house-counsel are now recognising alternative dispute resolution (ADR) as a more commercial and effective way to resolve these disputes. 

As such, there is an opportunity for technology to help reduce the financial and time burden of these disputes, allowing insurers to better manage their matters and avoid adverse effects on their business. 

The solution is simple

Immediation offers insurance businesses a pathway to engage in an amicable, non-aggressive way at an early stage of a dispute. It enables insurers to demonstrate a real focus on plaintiffs and insureds by levelling the playing field, focusing instead on resolution (what “should” we do), rather than settlement or litigation (what “can” we do).

Click here to view Immediation’s ADR pricing.

Immediation provides sophisticated technology for In-house Counsel, lawyers, brokers and claims managers to manage the claims process in a more efficient manner. Creating the option of fixed fees and timeframes, Immediation allows disputing parties, their in-house Counsel and their lawyers to participate fully from remote locations. They can streamline the dispute resolution process and reduce the need for excessive correspondence and interlocutory procedure. 

Promoting interest-based solutions

While the concept may seem new to some, online dispute resolution platforms have existed since the spread of global computer networks in the early 2000’s. Back in 2002, Colin Rule, in his book Online Dispute Resolution for Business, identified ODR as the 21st century’s way of combining dispute resolution and information technology into a new and important tool that allows companies, especially those with a global presence, to be more efficient, cost-effective, and resolve matters before they escalate. 

Immediation gives insurers an opportunity to find creative ways to resolve disputes and avoid litigation. Improving the current processes requires a shift in industry mindset and a move away from the traditional “winner” and “loser” approach to interest-based negotiation which can find more commercial solutions. The move towards the interest-based approach gives both parties an opportunity to find palatable solutions to disputes.  

Read more about Laura Keily, the Founder of Immediation.