The South African insurance industry boasts a high level of development and sophistication and is characterised by strong competition that is enlivened by the presence of a large number of major insurers, reinsurers, brokers and intermediaries.
Both the long- and short-term insurance industries are comprehensively and firmly regulated and have good links with the major insurance markets of the United States, the United Kingdom and Europe. Certain major European and US insurance and reinsurance companies (notably Lloyd's of London) maintain domestic offices in South Africa.
The South African long-term insurance industry, in particular, enjoys international recognition for its pioneering product development and innovative product marketing strategies.
South African insurance law has its roots in Europe's commercial law and, due to its history, both Roman-Dutch and English law are considered to be the primary common law sources of South African insurance law.
Various Acts of Parliament apply specifically to the insurance industry. The most important of these is the Long-term Insurance Act, No. 52 of 1998 (LTI Act), and the Short-term Insurance Act, No. 53 of 1998 (STI Act).
Significant changes to the insurance landscape will be taking place over the next few years and insurers, brokers and intermediaries will be significantly affected. The interpretation of inter-relating acts will require special attention to avoid transgression.
“South African insurance law has its roots in Europe’s commercial law and, due to its history, both Roman-Dutch and English law are considered to be the primary common law sources of South African insurance law.”
For a comprehensive document outlining the implications of this area of law in South Africa