British life insurer Aviva has requested the High Court of England and Wales to grant permission for moving its assets totaling €9bn ($10.2bn) amid uncertainty over Brexit.
Requesting Judge Richard Snowden, the insurer said that the company should be allowed to transfer the life-insurance policies held by non-UK policyholders to its subsidiary in Ireland, reported Bloomberg.
Many major insurer including AXA XL, Travelers Europe, Royal London, Chubb, Liberty Specialty Markets, have either transferred or in the process of transferring their business to other countries to insulate themselves from the effect of Brexit.
The insurer has expressed its concerns that it could lose the so-called “passporting rights” if the UK leave the European union without a deal. The “passporting rights” enable them to make payments to insurers outside the UK.
In case of hard- Brexit, insurers and pension firms will be prohibited from making payments which will make insurance policies dormant on their accounts.
“The reason for proposing it, your lordship will not be surprised to know, is Brexit. The current and intensifying uncertainty render the need for certainty all the more pressing,” Aviva lawyer Martin Moore was quoted as saying by Bloomberg.
“It obviously will take some time for clarity to emerge,” Moore added.
Aviva was granted permission to transfer $1.29bn in general policies earlier this month.
Brokers’ concerns grow around Brexit
The UK broker businesses are growing increasingly concerned about Brexit uncertainty and the economic climate. However, the brokers won’t let this affect their plans for growth, according to Aviva’s latest Broker Barometer survey.
Nearly half (48%) of broker owners said that they are planning to expand their business in 2019, despite only 7% thinking the economic climate is having a positive effect (down 13% since May 2018).
Due to the current political and economic uncertainty, more brokers are taking steps to secure the future of their business. The number of broker owners who have some kind of succession plan in place has more than doubled (from 25% to 56%).
Aviva intermediaries managing director Phil Bayles said the findings were encouraging for the future of independent brokerages – and showed that most were feeling positive despite the challenging business environment.