ARAG director: Why I’m in insurance coverage


ARAG director: Why I’m in insurance coverage | Insurance Business America

“We are like David’s slingshot in opposition to Goliath”

ARAG director: Why I'm in insurance

Insurance News

Daniel Wood

Renko Dirksen (pictured above) enjoys his international obligations.

“I have the privilege to not only work in Germany but to work in so many different countries and experience so many different cultures and ways of doing the insurance business,” he mentioned.  “That’s really exciting.”

Dirksen is on the board of administrators for ARAG, a agency specialising in authorized expense insurance coverage (LEI). ARAG has a presence in 19 international locations around the globe, together with Australia. ARAG regards itself as “the leading legal insurer worldwide” and is the biggest privately owned insurance coverage firm in Germany.

Insurance Business met with Dirksen on his current go to to ARAG’s Australia enterprise. The operation Down Under was launched just a few years in the past and Dirksen mentioned he was there to get a sense for the native challenges and alternatives.

From regulation faculty to ARAG

IB requested the board member from Düsseldorf how his insurance coverage profession began?

“I remember when I graduated from law school, I found that I did not want to practice as a lawyer or work as a judge or prosecutor, but I did want to get into management and business which was everything I found interesting,” he mentioned.

Dirksen got here throughout a job providing from the ARAG Group – and the remaining is historical past. He grew to become the assistant to the CEO.

Part of the explanation for his longevity with the agency, he mentioned, is his confidence within the product which he thinks has “a lot of value.”

“Having a legal expenses insurance policy in your pocket really helps,” mentioned Dirksen. “Then you can pursue your case at every level and go to the highest court to pursue your rights.”

The different purpose is, he mentioned, is how an insurance coverage profession includes working collaboratively to unravel issues.

“At the same time, people energise,” he mentioned. “I really like to work with people to solve problems, to interact with people and my colleagues.”

Dirksen mentioned this makes the insurance coverage enterprise “very exciting because there are so many different people from so many different backgrounds.”

Medical negligence, unpaid payments and company scandals

He instructed IB about a few of the methods ARAG’s LEI has helped individuals pursue their authorized rights. The examples included labour disputes, circumstances of medical negligence and small companies chasing up unpaid payments.

“We do a lot of clinical negligence cases, especially in the UK,” Dirksen mentioned. “They are very often heartbreaking to be honest.”

However, he mentioned individuals with ARAG’s LEI insurance coverage have been in a position to obtain higher outcomes and rebuild some form of high quality of life.

“When you see the initial offering from the other side and you see the outcome, then our customers know that it’s really worthwhile to have this policy,” mentioned Dirksen.

One case through which ARAG’s clients had been in a position to pursue their rights made worldwide headlines.

“The diesel scandal, for example with Volkswagen (VW),” he mentioned. “With us the average consumer can say, ‘I’m going to take up the fight and go against Volkswagen’.”

Dirksen mentioned LEI supplied particular person VW homeowners with a option to pursue justice in opposition to an enormous company agency.

“In most situations, consumers wouldn’t meet them at eye level – Volkswagen would just outspend them,” he mentioned. “In some ways we are like David´s slingshot against Goliath.”

According to data from ARAG, the agency made funds of roughly €70 million for 36,000 circumstances in reference to the diesel scandal. The ARAG clients had bought autos from VW and different producers that used the identical emissions-cheating system and had been in a position to make use of their LEI insurance policies to pursue compensation.

More on the VW diesel emissions scandal

In 2016, automobile maker Volkswagen was compelled to recall thousands and thousands of vehicles – about 8.5 million throughout Europe and half million within the US in line with a BBC News report – after a automobile emissions scandal.

VW admitted it was dishonest emissions checks and has paid out billions of {dollars} in prices and penalties. In Australia, the corporate obtained a wonderful from the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) of $125 million, the very best ever imposed by the Federal Court for breaches of shopper legal guidelines.

However, years later, VW continues to combat courtroom battles.

In June, a former Audi CEO (VW owns Audi) was handed a suspended sentence of practically two years for his position within the diesel scandal. According to Reuters, former and present VW managers are nonetheless on trial in Germany and there are greater than 100,000 diesel emission scandal circumstances nonetheless pending on the highest courtroom alone.

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