10 comments on “What jolly larks

  1. Max won’t end up owning Aviva. There’s no point in owning the liabilities of a bankrupt non-trading life assurance company.

    So at some point some work-out along the lines of Equitable Life is going to happen, methinks.

  2. Aviva weren’t stupid enough to sign that contract. It’s worse than that: they were stupid enough to buy a company that had signed the contact and had already red-flagged it as a major problem. I bet they couldn’t believe their luck when Aviva bought them anyway. Where was the due dilligence?

  3. Can’t be the only contract out there that was written when the world worked in a fundamentally different way. The judges will take that into consideration as well. Legally the question is, since the assumptions made at the time are no longer valid, is the contract still valid? If not, the plaintiff could leave court with nothing more than a big legal bill, possibly for both sides.

    And I believe everyone else has settled.

  4. Tim:

    The link doesn’t go to the page with the terms of the contract under discussion. That’s why the link is wrong.

    Of course, the article shouldn’t be split up into two pages in the first place, but that’s another issue.

  5. It’s interesting that you say the French are so strict on upholding the law on behalf of policyholders. The life insurers have had a rather fluid interpretation of European solvency regulations in the past.

    Best bet will be some kind of splitting of Aviva France into two, with the crappy-contract part being spun off with minimal capital.

  6. > The judges will take that into consideration as well.

    Let’s assume they did when France’s highest court ruled in M. George’s favour.

    > the plaintiff could leave court with nothing more than a big legal bill, possibly for both sides.

    He has consistently left multiple courts with judgements saying his contract is vaild and Aviva have to pay up.

    > And I believe everyone else has settled.

    Not everyone, no, although apparently M. George’s case is the most important because his was the most successful investment strategy.

    I think the whole thing’s hilarious. I work in Risk, and none of us can believe Aviva were stupid enough to buy this thing. They’ve paid good money for their own doom.

  7. Most of the original contracts was cashed out when the company realized just how stupid it was. It was done via a sneaky renewal notice that also void the original term of retroactive dealing. Some of the policyholder was smart enough to actually read the whole statement before signing anything.

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