Head of the CMS Insurance Group
Head of the CMS Insurance Group
78 Cannon Street
Alex Denslow is Head of the CMS Insurance Group. In this position, he leads an international team of 100 specialist lawyers.
He is a recommended partner in Chambers and Legal 500 for insurance / reinsurance disputes and international arbitrations, and was shortlisted for the Financial Times Innovative Lawyer.
Alex advises international insurers and reinsurers on direct and reinsurance disputes and coverage issues, across non-marine (particularly property and casualty) and marine (cargo, freight liability and offshore energy) matters. He also has extensive experience of defending brokers and their E&O insurers in major multi-party disputes. He provides coverage advice and handles the defence of claims across energy, specie, property solicitor and IFA lines of business.
Alex has considerable trial experience. He has been involved in several landmark cases including the Court of Appeal decisions in Bonner-v-Cox; Jones-v-Environcom; Clark-v-In Focus and Aspen Insurance-v-Adana Construction and acted in numerous successful confidential arbitrations.
Having held in-house positions at Miller Insurance Services LLP, Markel International and Aon, Alex’s advice is underpinned by an understanding of how the insurance market operates. He provides tailored risk management training to clients and lectures extensively on legal issues affecting the market, as well as litigation strategy. He is a co-author of the leading English legal textbook "Insurance Broking Practice and the Law". Alex was awarded the CMS Client Relationship Partner Award for outstanding service to his clients.
Professional Indemnity (defence and coverage)
- IFA and its PI insurers in the ground-breaking Court of Appeal decision of Clark v In Focus Asset Management, which decided that a claimant cannot accept the maximum FOS award limit, and then sue for the balance of loss in court.
- Aon in the heavyweight “77 Energy Cover” (Bonner-v-Cox) Commercial Court litigation, a six month trial of a complex £100m dispute over reinsurance of an energy cover purchased by Lloyd’s underwriters.
- Broker Miles Smith in the Court of Appeal case of Jones v Environcom, the seminal decision on the duty of care owed by a broker to its client.
Reinsurance (defence and coverage)
- Coverage and aggregation issues arising in connection with California Wildfires, Hurricane Frances, Typhoon Songda, World Trade Centre, PA Spiral, NZ earthquakes, Superstorm Sandy
- Numerous successful arbitrations, most recently concerning the trigger of an OIML Warranty following an incident involving the FPSO Maersk Gryphon.
Liability (defence and coverage)
- A groundworks contractor in the Court of Appeal decision of Aspen v Adana Construction which concerned its coverage dispute with its liability insurer following a tower crane collapse. the first reported decision on the meaning of “product” in a standard combined contractor’s liability policy and determining the inter-relationship of product and public liability sections and the operation of efficacy exclusions in product liability wordings.
- Coverage advice on the failure of steel bolts in The Leadenhall “Cheesegrater” Building.
- Complex arbitration involving a coverage dispute following a claim made for US$ 17mn CBI losses flowing from the collapse of a bridge in Russia.
Energy, Marine, Specie (defence and coverage)
- Italian insurers in relation to the successful subrogated recovery in a Commercial Court trial against the Salvage Association following a negligent JH143 Shipyard risk assessment survey which contributed to damage following a fire on the vessel MV Cala Palma.
- Coverage / defence instructions on a wide variety of specie issues involving freight liability, cargo, aquaculture, fine art and trade credit.
1996 - The College of Law, Guildford
1995 - LLB, Southampton University
1991 - The King’s College School, Wimbledon
British Insurance Law Association
The Law Society
2015 – When is a product not a product, Insurance Day, Legal Focus
2014 – Appeals court rules FOS compensation is final, Mortgage Solutions
2014 – Landmark ruling removes threat of redress double whammy. FT Adviser
15 March 2016 – Speaker SZ Reinsurance Day, Munich
18 Sept 2015 – Speaker, Aon Benfield Facultative Eastern European Reinsurance Conference, Prague.
13 July 2015 – Speaker, NARIM Dutch Association for Insurance Managers (English insurance law)
13 March 2015 – Speaker, CausaRie Dutch Insurance / Reinsurance Professionals (English insurance law).
21 Nov 2013 – Presentation to London Reinsurance Market Claims Group (Superstorm Sandy).
18 Nov 2010 – Presentation to the LMA Claims Committee ( legal ramifications of the Lloyd’s Claims Scheme)