Proposal forms offer a great way for insurance brokers to obtain boundless information on solicitors.

I am getting daily telephone calls from specialist indemnity insurance brokers all offering a unique service for solicitors. In addition I am now getting daily calls from specialist funders offering a unique service to help with funding of PI as well.

Gone is the day when there were a few brokers who actually represented a range of companies. Everyone offers a unique service – the uniqueness seems to be the broker represents a single insurance company you have never heard of. Sometimes the telephone salesman has not heard of it either.

You ask which insurance company and they just repeat the name of the broker. But at least these people are always friendly on the phone and all want to know how I am today and wish me a pleasant evening/morning.

Someone must have heard me ask why there isn’t just one standard form to fill in because the brokers often just ask for a copy of your proposal form you have sent somewhere else. Some of the brokers offer a free quote, which is nice, although it had not occurred to me that I might be charged.

The only information they really want is how much you are paying now and who to. Of course you send these and never hear a squeak again. Presumably they want big firms with big premiums.   

One wonders what happens to these forms we fill out so carefully. It is a great way to get information on solicitors. I could phone the solicitors near to me and say: ‘I am Honest Joe of Honest Joe specialist brokers and I am offering a free quote. Just send me a proposal form.’ And they will send information on their staff, workload, claims history and financial health and no doubt the senior partner’s inside-leg measurement if I asked.

Brokers seem to ask more and more.

Someone must be making money out of this, which leads me to wonder who. Unlike car insurance you do not get a free cuddly toy or even a free pen for filling these out. Perhaps I will ask the next salesman to send me a free pen.

David Pickup is a partner at Aylesbury-based Pickup & Scott