Manulife to pay out $69 million in settlement

Allegations of not disclosing information denied by insurance heavyweight

Manulife to pay out $69 million in settlement

Insurance News

By Will Koblensky

It states that the “claims are unproven” and it is not accepting any liability, but Manulife’s insurance policy will dole out $69 million to its shareholders in Ontario and Quebec.

The payout covers the settlement Manulife reached with the company’s investors after they filed a class lawsuit “against Manulife and certain of its former officers” involving allegedly hiding information about risks around investment funds and annuities.

“These matters date back to 2009. The agreement to settle the Ontario and Quebec class actions avoids the potential cost of two separate trials and brings to an efficient conclusion the remaining disclosure litigation,” Manulife said in a written statement sent to Insurance Business.

Manulife’s settlement is subject to court approval and doesn’t cover legal expenses.

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“The claims are unproven, and the settlement is made without any admission of liability. Manulife continues to firmly believe that its disclosure satisfied applicable disclosure requirements and defended itself vigorously in these actions,” Manulife’s email said.

In its press release, Manulife said a Federal Court in New York dismissed a similar class action lawsuit.

“In April 2011, Manulife disclosed that staff of the Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) informed Manulife that it would not be seeking any orders from the OSC in connection with the enforcement notice delivered in June 2009,” the release said.

Earlier in January, Insurance Business reported on the Consumer Federation of America accusing major life insurers of portraying themselves as financial advisors when they were in fact, salespeople. One of the life insurers the Consumer Federation of America accused was Manulife’s US subsidiary, John Hancock.

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