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The State Claims Agency (SCA) launched a new guidance document for determining insurance requirements for Goods & Services RFTs & Contracts at a Network conference in Dublin Castle yesterday.

The use of contracts is increasing in the State sector with public service spending estimated at €8.5bn on good and services annually. Insurance is core to the management of contractors, ensuring the State is protected from the negligent acts of a third party.

This guidance document will assist the SCA’s Delegated State Authorities (DSA) in determining and checking third party insurances. It provides a practical tool kit for use by DSAs with the overall goal of demystifying the area of insurance and third party contracts.

Event overview

The seminar consisted of a number of speakers from the SCA:

  • Pat Kirwan, Deputy Director opened the conference. Pat introduced the subject “When the State is tendering for third party services and goods, insurance is a key aspect in ensuring that the State is financially protected for the negligent act of a third party.. However this should be proportionate to the risk and should not put undue expectations on third parties resulting in unnecessary costs to the State or inability for small companies to tender”.
  • Paul Burke, Enterprise Risk Manager brought the attendees through the guidance document. He outlined the typical covers expected for contractors and navigated through some of the practical tools which can assist DSA’s in specifying insurance.
  • Louise Boughton, Senior Litigation Solicitor gave the attendees the litigation perspective of indemnity clauses insurance. Following a brief overview of the law of negligence, Louise gave examples of claims against the State, which the SCA have managed, whereby the claims were lost or successfully defended on the basis of third party insurance.
  • Fiona Kearns, Senior Enterprise Risk Manager gave the final presentation of the day. Fiona introduced a second guidance document on the use of contractors. She described the difference between the two types of contractors (contract for services and contract of services) and the practical implications of same.
  • Pat Kirwan closed the conference with current news and events in the SCA. He discussed some of the future guidance documents which will be provided by the Enterprise Risk Section to support the GIS and invited the attendees to share this documentation and future initiatives with colleagues in their organisation. This seminar finished with a productive Q&A session.

View guidance

The insurance guidance document is available here and any queries in relation to this document or future events please contact

The SCA General Indemnity Scheme Network has been in operation since 2007 and has acted as an opportunity to share various initiatives in risk management, particularly in respect to risk governance, fleet safety, fire safety, noise induced hearing loss, radon, manual handling etc. The SCA coordinate the administration of the Network and provide a secretariat to meetings. Risks affecting DSAs can have consequences in terms of economic performance and organisation reputation, as well as environmental, safety and societal outcomes. It is incumbent upon both the SCA and the DSA to collaborate effectively to manage risk.

The 43 DSA’s attended today’s event including:

  • Health Service Executive
  • 5 Voluntary Hospitals
  • 9 Government Departments
  • 24 Government Agencies
  • Office of Government Procurement
  • An Garda Síochána
  • Defence Forces
  • Irish Prison Service

The State Claims Agency (SCA) is the name used by the National Treasury Management Agency when carrying out its claims and risk management functions. The SCA provides risk management advice and assistance to State authorities with the aim of reducing future claims and litigation. The risk management programme focuses on providing advice and support to State authorities and healthcare enterprises in relation to risk management structures, maintenance of buildings, fire safety, health and safety and environmental management.

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