Questions & Answers
What are you proposing?
We’re proposing to transfer a number of policies provided by Aviva Insurance Limited to Aviva Insurance Ireland DAC.
The transferring policies are currently either written through the Irish branch of Aviva Insurance Limited or are policies written by Aviva Insurance Limited which cover risks situated elsewhere in European Union (EU) or European Economic Area (EEA).
You can find more information about this in the Scheme Summary and Scheme Document in our document library.
There are some policies issued from the UK which cover risks in the UK (or elsewhere in the world) as well as in the EU/EEA. In these cases, only the EU/EEA-based risks (excluding risks situated in the UK) will transfer to Aviva Insurance Ireland DAC. Aviva Insurance Limited will continue to insure the UK and other non-EU/EEA risks under the policy.
Examples of these are:
- UK home insurance where the same policy covers both a main home in the UK and a holiday home in the EU/EEA; and
- UK commercial insurance which covers a UK-based business and also premises in the EU/EEA.
There are also some policies written in Ireland and which cover in whole or part risks in the UK. These will also transfer to Aviva Insurance Ireland DAC.
Examples of these are:
- Motor insurance for Irish customers who have UK registered vehicles, such as motor fleets.
- Irish commercial insurance which covers an Ireland-based business and also premises in the UK.
Why are you doing this?
We’re preparing for anticipated changes in the law which applies to Aviva as a result of the UK’s expected withdrawal from the European Union. Companies based in the UK, including Aviva Insurance Limited, may lose the right to carry out business in other EU/EEA countries in the same ways as they do now. This means we may be unable to administer your policy in the same way. Aviva Insurance Ireland DAC is incorporated in the Republic of Ireland, a country within the European Union, and will be able to cover the EU/EEA risks under your policy.
We want to provide certainty for customers who may be affected by these changes.
Which policies are transferring?
We’re proposing to transfer the following policies:
- all policies issued by Aviva Insurance Limited through our branch in the Republic of Ireland (including where our records show that the risk insured is situated in the United Kingdom);
- certain policies issued by Aviva Insurance Limited through our former branch in France;
- certain policies issued by Aviva Insurance Limited through our former branch in Belgium; and
- certain commercial and retail policies issued by Aviva Insurance Limited where our records show that all or part of the risk insured is situated in EU/EEA states other than the United Kingdom.
Some policies written in the UK cover risks situated in both the EU/EEA and in the UK or elsewhere in the world. In these cases, only the EU/EEA part of cover will transfer to Aviva Insurance Ireland DAC. Examples of these are UK home insurance where the same policy covers both a main home in the UK and a holiday home in the EU/EEA or UK commercial insurance which covers both a UK based business and premises in the EU/EEA.
How many policies are transferring?
There will be about 1.4 million policies transferring to Aviva Insurance Ireland DAC.
Does this mean you’re forming a new company?
Yes. Aviva’s business in Ireland is currently carried out by a branch of our UK insurance company, Aviva Insurance Limited. Because of the anticipated changes in the law if the UK leaves the European Union as expected, we’ve set up a new company in Ireland, Aviva Insurance Ireland DAC.
Are you transferring Aviva Direct Ireland policies?
Aviva Direct Ireland Limited is an intermediary company, not an insurance company. It arranges insurance with us for our direct insurance customers in Ireland. If the transfer is approved, your policy will transfer to Aviva Insurance Ireland DAC but Aviva Direct Ireland Limited will continue to arrange and manage your policy in Ireland in the same way.
Where can I find more information about your proposal?
You can find all the information relating to our proposals in the document library. This includes copies of the documents that we’ll provide to the court which you can download.
For any questions about your policy, please call your usual number
How will my interests as a policyholder be protected under the transfer?
Your interests are being protected by a rigorous approval process which includes a detailed review by an Independent Expert, whose appointment has been approved by the Prudential Regulation Authority in consultation with the Financial Conduct Authority, to review the effect on policyholders.
The Prudential Regulatory Authority and the Financial Conduct Authority have also been consulted and have been given the opportunity to raise objections.
In addition, we are writing to you to make you aware of our proposals and to give you the opportunity to object if you believe you may be negatively affected by them. This is because the Independent Expert will not be able to review the position of each policyholder, so if you have any questions or think you will be negatively affected by the proposal, it’s important that you contact us and consider whether you want to make an objection.
The court will consider the proposal and will only approve the changes if they’re satisfied they are appropriate, including whether policyholders may be negatively affected. The court will take into account the views of the policyholders, the Independent Expert, the Prudential Regulation Authority and the Financial Conduct Authority.
Who’s the Independent Expert and what makes him independent?
Simon Sheaf is a Fellow of the Institute and Faculty of Actuaries (IFoA) and a Fellow of the Society of Actuaries in Ireland. He is Head of General Insurance Actuarial and Risk within Grant Thornton UK LLP and has more than 25 years of experience working within the general insurance industry.
We appointed Mr Sheaf after he was approved by the Prudential Regulation Authority in consultation with the Financial Conduct Authority. His role is to report to the court on the effect of the proposed transfer on policyholders. While we will pay him a fee, he has no duty to us and as a member of the IFoA he has a professional obligation to stay fully independent.
Mr Sheaf formed his opinion using his experience and his duty is to the court.
Why are you telling me about this now?
To make sure you’re protected, we must follow a set process before the transfer can take effect and the process is quite lengthy. This process includes:
- giving you (as a policyholder or claimant) notice of the transfer;
- making you aware that you can object to the transfer and put your objections directly to the court if you believe you’ll be negatively affected by the transfer;
- a detailed review by an Independent Expert;
- consulting our industry regulators in the UK and Ireland; and
- approval by the court in Edinburgh.
What happens if the UK decides not to withdraw from the European Union?
The UK Government has indicated its intention to leave the EU and on that basis, we’ll proceed with the proposed transfer so we’re not dependent on a political outcome.
I'm not a policyholder, why have you written to me?
We’re writing to all policyholders, as required by the court, to tell them about our proposal and to outline the process we are following. The definition of a ’policyholder‘ used by the court is broader than just the legal holder of the policy, and includes:
- policyholders, trustees, assignees, and attorneys under a power of attorney, of a policy; and
- third party claimants, such as an employee under an employer’s liability policy, or a person who has been involved in a motor vehicle accident involving someone we insured.
Why have you sent me several letters about the same thing?
You may receive more than one letter if you have more than one policy or claim with us. Aviva is also proposing a separate transfer of certain life and pensions policies from another Aviva company in the UK to another Aviva company in Ireland so you may receive a letter about this if you have a product with that company as well.
I’ve received more than one letter with different phone numbers. Why?
We have different customer teams for different types of policy. To make sure you speak to the right team, the phone number on each letter is the one which is right for that particular policy.
I have opted out of receiving marketing/direct mail. Why have you ignored my request?
Legally we have to contact you about our proposal so that you have an opportunity to ask questions or object.