U.S. and EU Sanctions: How Are Insurers Affected?

12 January 2015
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Key takeaways

  • The recent imposition of sanctions against Russia has highlighted the great effect sanctions can have on global economic transactions.
  • Breaches of the U.S. and EU’s sanctions regimes often constitute criminal offences and can lead to substantial fines, imprisonment and negative publicity.  U.S. regulators in particular have been levying significant fines for violations of sanctions.
  • Financial companies, including insurers and brokers, tend to be the chief targets of prosecutors and regulators. Interest in insurance activities is set to increase – especially as so many insurance transactions may involve persons or countries subject to sanctions.
  • Several types of sanctions directly affect the insurance industry: specific insurance bans, asset freezes, restrictions on fund transfers.
  • In light of this, insurers and brokers should be looking seriously at their compliance systems and processes, and must ensure they thoroughly know their clients and their clients’ businesses.