Average Adjusters are experts in marine insurance and law, who may be appointed by any party in a marine claim or dispute. Irrespective of the identity of the instructing party, the Average Adjuster is bound to act in an impartial and independent manner.
The following description of that role was given by E.R. Lindley in 1904 and remains true today:
The use of the adjuster individually is to grease the wheels of commercial machinery, to do work which neither the assured nor the underwriter have either time, training or inclination for, in such a manner as to expedite settlements without resort to the expensive machinery of the law: His duty is to act fairly to both parties to the contract of insurance or the contract of carriage, to set down all material facts, withholding nothing of importance, to present the figures of the suggested settlement in such a manner as to be capable of being easily grasped, and above all, in all cases wherever definite law or practice is not clear, to place the matter before the parties interested in such a manner as to facilitate an agreement between them
By experience and training, Average Adjusters are therefore problem-solvers and mediators.
The Association promotes professional standards and correct principles in the adjustment of marine claims by ensuring, through examination or otherwise, that those entering into membership possess a high level of expertise.
Its aim is to achieve uniformity of practice amongst Average Adjusters by providing a forum for discussion and by establishing rules of practice where necessary. It ensures the independence and impartiality of its members by imposing a strict code of professional conduct.
Finally, it provides a service to the maritime community with established procedures where they may obtain advice on all aspects of marine claims to assist settlement.
The Association has two sets of Rules: