The Axxima team is growing once again.

Posted on November 16, 2018

Axxima welcomed aboard another new associate this week! Azeem Rehmatullah joined us on Monday. He will be further strengthening our specialist insurance team, which focuses on self-insurance and alternative distribution-focused insurance solutions.

We’re excited to have Azeem on board to help serve our clients.

Welcoming two new associates today!

Posted on November 5, 2018

Smith Sidhu

Sathu Yoganathan

Sathu Yoganathan

Axxima is welcoming two new hires today! Sathu Yoganathan and Smith Sidhu are our newest associates, and we’re excited to welcome them into the Axxima family.

Smith will be a member of our incredible team of claims managers as claims counsel, and Sathu is joining our dynamic broking and underwriting team as an insurance specialist assistant.

We’re excited to be heading into the new year with them helping us to serve our clients.

Announcing our new CFO – Elena Cealaia

Posted on September 17, 2018


Axxima is pleased to announce that Elena Cealaia, CPA, CGA has been appointed as a Principal and CFO of the Firm. Elena has been with Axxima since inception in 2013. She is responsible for the financial accounting and regulatory functions for a number of reciprocal insurance exchanges and insurance programs. She also provides ongoing insurance accounting consulting and outsourced services to a variety of clients.

Wishing Joe Tontini well in his retirement

Posted on September 17, 2018

Please join us in extending best wishes to Joe Tontini, who is retiring from Axxima. When we established Axxima back in 2013, Joe agreed to defer his retirement until 2018 to help us ensure that Axxima was successfully launched and well-established for the future. Five years passes all too quickly but here we are, mission (so far) accomplished.

Axxima’s IFRS 17 Roadmap

Posted on July 23, 2018

We’re gearing up for IFRS 17 with our clients and prepared this fun roadmap to share. We wouldn’t say IFRS 17 is “fun”, but it doesn’t mean we can’t have a little of it along the way.

Click the thumbnail below to download the PDF:

Axxima IFRS Roadmap

Balancing Duties – The Role of the Mandated Insurer

Posted on December 20, 2017

By Tim Clarke – General Claims Counsel

I have spent most of my 25 years as a lawyer working for or with professional liability insurance programs mandated by self-regulated professions.  The roles of the regulator and insurer are quite distinct but should be complimentary.

The regulatory authority has a duty to administer the profession in the public interest.  As part of that role, the professional regulator will not only set down ethical standards and discipline process but will, frequently, require its practicing members to carry insurance from a designated or captive professional liability (malpractice) insurer.  The policy reasoning behind the requirement of insurance is to ensure that members of the public who suffer economic loss because of an error or omission by a professional will be compensated.

Designating a compulsory or captive insurer also ensures that all members of the profession have uniform malpractice insurance coverage.  Including all members of a profession in a single program increases the risk pool for insurers which allows all professionals access to affordable coverage.  Having a single insurer also ensures that claims made are handled consistently.

At law, insurers and insureds owe each other a duty of the utmost good faith.  The regulator’s first duty is to the public but the insurer’s first duty is to the insured professional.  These duties do not have to be mutually exclusive. As claims managers, by dealing with claims on a principled basis, we help the regulator fulfill its public protection imperative. Justifiable claims by clients who have suffered harm at the hands of a professional should be paid as efficiently and expeditiously as possible. An insurer is not a protective association, “stonewalling” legitimate claimants is not its function. Equally, an insurer should not be capricious in how it extends coverage. In my view, a compulsory insurer’s job is to look for not to deny coverage.

None of this is to say that a compulsory insurer should compromise the defence of an insured for the sake of expedience. Not all claims are created equal.  A professional’s reputation is possibly their most important asset.  We see a great many unmeritorious claims against our insureds and take an assault on a professional’s reputation very seriously. While there are many lawyers in Ontario, the insurance litigation bar is relatively small.  We see the same plaintiff’s counsel again and again.  While we strive to resolve meritorious claims as quickly as possible, we do try to send the message that there is no profit to be had in bringing a groundless law suit against one of our insureds. Where an unmeritorious claim is made against a professional, the professional should be able to expect the insurer to stand up for them.

Brokers gonna broke – congrats Meagan!

Posted on December 6, 2017


Meagan Phillips joined us in late March of 2013 as an underwriting administrator utilizing her law clerk degree in reviewing and processing documents both in the claims and underwriting areas. Her passion for underwriting became clear as she started to move through her CIP designation, which is almost complete, and just recently Meagan put another stake in the ground by obtaining her broker’s license after a very intense but thorough 2 week prep course. Congratulations Meagan!

The Axxima team has been growing in 2017!

Posted on November 13, 2017

Three new faces have joined us this year. Each adding their own energy to the Axxima family.
 
 

Richard McGee
Role: Insurance Specialist
Home base: Toronto
Joined: January 2017

Richard has experience in underwriting, broking, and risk management all in a past life at places like Aviva, Marsh, and JLT. He has been putting his well-honed craft to good use at Axxima over the past 9 months. Clients know him best for his extensive suit collection and passion for anything sports related.


Nick Mahdavi, LLB
Role: Consultant/Claims Counsel
Home base: Toronto
Joined: September 2017

Nick joined us full-time as a Consultant and Claims Counsel. Nick has been with us for almost a year filling in a maternity leave position and he joins Axxima’s well-seasoned and talented group of lawyers and claim professionals. To Nick’s credit he is dying to learn about the brokerage side of our business.


Jean-François St-Pierre
Role: Actuarial Analyst
Home base: Longueuil
Joined: September 2017

Jean-Francois joined us as part of our actuarial team. Having just graduated this past May from Laval University, he is getting put through his paces by our FCAS crew while working on his actuarial designation. His energy and enthusiasm for the work is helping him fit right in.

5 Questions Boards Should Ask Their Actuary

Posted on September 11, 2017

What questions should you ask your actuary?

Photo credit: iStock.com/FangXiaNuo

Over the last 20 years, I’ve presented the results of various actuarial analyses to client Boards hundreds of times. Sometimes I get asked great questions, but mostly, I don’t.

I understand why, though. The actuarial presentation is rarely the sole focus of a Board meeting, and the Board is usually moving quickly through a busy agenda with financial results, governance issues, new initiatives, marketing, etc.

I also understand that some Board members are less comfortable than others with the numbers and financial-centric presentations. The actuarial concepts and terminology can be overwhelming, and some Board members are bound to feel uncomfortable asking questions for fear of showing a lack of understanding. It is certainly not their fault – Board education on actuarial topics is not easy to find, and often Board members will be limited to one or two opportunities annually to have any actuarial discussion.

To encourage actuarial discussion at the Board level and highlight the value that the actuary can provide, I came up with a list of questions for Boards to ask their actuary.