News

The Ogden discount rate has been reduced

Until recently hardly anyone knew of the Ogden discount rate but with effect from 20th March 2017, the Ogden discount rate was reduced from 2.5% to -0.75%

Here are the key points to note about the changes and how they will affect you:

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Penalties double for using mobiles while driving

On 1st March, the penalties for using a mobile while driving doubled. Now, if you are caught using your mobile while behind the wheel, you will receive six points and a £200 fine. For new drivers that have been driving for less than two years, this means that their licence will be revoked and they must retake their practical and theory tests.

The significant penalty increase is in response to the high number of deaths and injuries every year caused by drivers using their mobile phones. The DfT said that of 88 deaths caused by distractions in 2012, 17 were because of mobile use – a higher death rate than other in-car causes. In 2014, this had risen to 21 fatal accidents and 22 in 2015.

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The Cockpit Arts/Clear Award 2016: Leah Jensen’s Progress

First launched in 2012, the annual Cockpit Arts / CLEAR Insurance Award aims to support professional craftspeople by providing them with match funded studio space and business development support for one year.

Of the 10 designer-makers invited to interview in July 2016, Leah Jensen impressed the judges and was selected as winner of the 2016 Award. Leah Jensen is a ceramicist and wood turner who merges different materials together to create striking and unique pieces. Leah’s research examines European painting between the 14th – 16th centuries, depicting tales of sorrow, tragedy and beauty.

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CLEAR acquires MPW Insurance Brokers

We are delighted to announce our acquisition of MPW Insurance Brokers based in Maidstone, Kent.  This latest deal represents our 21st acquisition since we were established in 2001 and now means that we handle over £90m in premiums. MPW also becomes our largest acquisition to date.

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Vending Operators: How to build a strong defence against employment disputes

 

There's lots of debate at the moment about the existence of zero hour contracts. However, most vending operators are probably more concerned about their exposure to a minefield of legal changes covering a wide range of issues. It’s tough enough trying to make a profit and stay in business and made harder if you have issues dealing with employment problems with a member of your workforce.
 
Keeping pace with developments to employment law is now a full-time job. However, the majority of vending operators are unlikely to have an in-house legal or human resources department, or the available funds to cover legal disputes as they arise. So, unless a company has in house legal expertise it can be very expensive to ensure compliance on all issues and can place considerable strain on the resources of a small business.

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Our employees of the year 2016–Kerry, Tracy and Nisa

In 2014, CLEAR launched the Pauline Uludag Employee of the Year Award in memory of our well-loved Claims Manager Pauline Uludag, who lost her fight with illness in December 2012 and passed away. Pauline was known for her exemplary standards, cheerful and considerate demeanour and genuine warmth towards clients, colleagues and insurers. The award was set up to recognise those of our staff who go the extra mile like Pauline did.

We had several staff nominations for our award and we were delighted to announce at our recent staff party that the winner of the 2016 award was Kerry Thompson. There were also two runner up awards; Tracy Holding-Director of the Year and Nisa Leach-Young Achiever of the Year.

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Disruption to our email services 13th-16th January 2017

Please note that CLEAR will be moving email services on the weekend of 13th-16th January 2017.

 
All emails sent to us will continue to be received and forwarded, but there could be a sluggish response to some services and our access to emails may be restricted/delayed.

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Our Christmas Opening Hours

Christmas is nearly here and as 2016 comes to an end we would like to take a moment to thank you for your valued support. Sending you yuletide greetings and the best of luck for a prosperous 2017!

 

Here are our Christmas opening hours incase you need to contact us:

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CLEAR girl selected as Apprenticeships Live finalist

Congratulations to Laura Miller, Trainee Account Handler in CLEAR's Commercial department, for being selected as an Apprenticeships Live finalist having recently attended their regional event.

The objective of the events, hosted by the Insurance Times and CII, is to help recognise and develop the insurance industry’s brightest and best apprentices.

The judging panel were extremely impressed with the quality of input from everyone on the day and Laura was selected – unanimously – as one of the finalists for their London event, which was held on Monday.

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Aviva Community Fund: Get Voting!

Aviva run a great campaign every year to support local causes promoted by brokers, offering the chance for community projects to win funding.

Oliver Webb, who works in our Leamington Spa Office, put forward a fantastic cause and is promoting the Birmingham Children’s Hospital Transplant Games Team. It’s a great event which the families love and raises the profile of organ donorship.

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With Sterling in a Tailspin, Should Brokers Be Warning About Sums Insured?

The weak pound may be good news for UK exporters but for firms that use parts, equipment and raw materials from abroad to make their products – business is getting much tougher. What’s more, the government’s caginess about what the terms of ‘Brexit’ will be may cause the value of sterling to sink further in the coming months.

One effect of this downward trend is that firms that bought parts or materials from overseas when the pound was stronger will find it more costly to replace them if, say, they’re damaged or stolen.

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 7 Reasons to Buy Crime Cover

Despite increased regulation and more stringent internal controls, fraud, theft and dishonesty are still major threats to organisations.

In a fraud barometer report, conducted by a leading auditor earlier this year, it was highlighted that the total cost (£732 million) of fraudulent activity in the UK remains worryingly high, up from £717 million in 2014.

If your organisation is looking to minimise potential losses from fraud, theft or dishonesty, insurance can offer valuable protection. Here are our 7 reasons to buy crime cover:

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The Cockpit Arts/Clear Award 2016: Matt Warner’s Progress

First launched in 2012, the annual Cockpit Arts / CLEAR Insurance Award aims to support professional craftspeople by providing them with match funded studio space and business development support for one year. Matthew moved in to Cockpit Arts, Deptford in January 2016 and we recently caught up with him to ask about his progress winning the award.

We are pleased to share some Q&As about Matt’s progress:

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