Surveyors & loss assessors recent initiatives of IRDA

Surveyors and Loss Assessors (S&LAs) play an important role in assessment of losses arising out of a contingency insured under a policy of general insurance. Further, SLAs are necessary under Section 64UM of the Insurance Act, 1938, which requires that a duly licensed SLA has to submit a report in respect of any claim where the loss is over Rs.20,000 in value, on a policy issued by any of the non-life insurers registered with IRDA.

This limit of loss is not applicable in respect of policies that have been exempted by the Ministry of Finance, Government of India, vide notification No. 203 (registered No. D221) S.O.1983 dated 30th May, 1970 Jyaistha 9, 1892 in the Gazette of India, Extraordinary Part-II Section 3 Sub-Section (ii).

The role of Surveyors and Loss Assessors is clearly provided for while laying down the duties and responsibilities under Chapter IV of the Insurance Surveyors and Loss Assessors (Licensing, Professional Requirements and Code of Conduct) Regulations, 2000. The Regulation 13 interalia states that the major duty and responsibility of a surveyor and loss assessor shall be to investigate, manage, quantify, validate and deal with losses arising from any contingency and report there upon.

All licensed surveyors and loss assessors shall work with competence, objectivity and professional integrity by strictly adhering to the code of conduct envisaged in the Regulations. The introduction of Insurance Surveyors and Loss Assessors (Licensing, Professional Requirements and Code of Conduct) Regulations, 2000 provides for effective monitoring, controlling, supervising and regulation of licensed surveyors and loss assessors.

The regulations have helped in bringing about transparency, expertise, professionalism to the activities of surveyors and in protecting the interests of policyholders. Some of the recent initiatives of the IRDA with regard to the profession of S&LAs include the following:

Exposure Draft

The IRDA, as mandated by the Government of India, took the necessary steps for the establishment of the Indian Institute of Insurance Surveyors ad Loss Assessors (IIISLA), which was incorporated on 4th October, 2005 under Section 25 of the Companies Act, 1956, having members from IRDA and Central Government in its Board.

In order to professionalize IIISLA, the IRDA issued an Exposure Draft covering the various issues pertaining to the profession of Surveyors and Loss Assessors and the IIISLA.


The Exposure Draft was placed on the IRDAs website for views and comments from the General Insurance Council, IIISLA and other members of the public.

The objectives of issuing the exposure draft include “ to suggest methods to reorganize, strengthen and professionalize IIISLA by introducing sound corporate governance standards; to set up structures to strengthen and administer the functioning of IIISLA; to suggest necessary changes in the MOA/AOA in order to facilitate the structural changes and to suggest mechanism for placing fiduciary obligations on surveyors and loss assessors in discharge of their duties.

The exposure draft has taken into consideration the provisions of applicable law, documents, reports, relevant pronouncements/ judgments of the Honble judiciary, feedback received from routine onsite and offsite supervision of the general insurance industry, representations/suggestions and complaints received so far from SLAs, policyholders, various orders and guidelines issued by IRDA from time to time.

The revamping of IIISLA covers the Amendments to Memorandum & Article of Association of IIISLA, Secretarial and Administrative Support, introduction of Mandatory membership and Registration of members, including Student Members, introduction of Code of Ethics for members, revision in membership fee, training and examination, introduction of Continuous Professional Development for students and surveyors by way of online courses.

The exposure draft also covers some of the other issues relating to surveyors and loss assessors viz., introduction of System of categorization on the basis of membership levels in IIISLA, training requirements for up-gradation of category, removal of the restriction in allocation of survey departments, financial limits for allocation of survey work, methodology for empanelment and utilization of services of licensed surveyors by insurers and revision in survey fee.

Integrated Surveyors Licensing Management System (ISLMS)

The IRDA is in the process of implementing a web based licensing portal for surveyor licensing, which would facilitate the process on account of its following features:

  • Online submission of applications for enrolment/grant of fresh/renewal license to Surveyors and Loss Assessors,
  • Facilitate and speed up process of fresh/renewal applications,
  • Facilitate integration with Insurers and other insurance related bodies,
  • Provide information about license status to insurers, policyholders and stakeholders,
  • Disclosure and on line filing of information by surveyors,
  • Maintenance and automatic updating of data/information on surveyors,
  • Analysis of data on licensed surveyors.

Digitization of Surveyors Records

As a step towards maintenance of surveyor records in soft form, the IRDA is in the process of digitizing records of all licensed surveyors.

Courtesy IRDA Annual Report 2011-12

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