The proposed transfer of approximately 350,000 annuities from the Prudential Assurance Company Limited ("Prudential") to Rothesay Life Plc ("Rothesay") is subject to approval from the High Court of England and Wales ("the High Court").

The proposed transfer is not expected to impact Rothesay policyholders, but you may object should you feel you may be adversely affected. All objections received will be considered by us, our regulators, the Independent Expert and the High Court.
Please see below for more details.
Background

On 14 March 2018, Rothesay and Prudential entered into a reinsurance transaction covering a £12bn portfolio of annuities. It was intended that this would be followed by an insurance business transfer under Part VII of the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000.

This transfer was subject to approval by the High Court. However, following a High Court hearing in June 2019, the judge did not approve the proposed transfer. Rothesay and Prudential appealed this decision and on 2 December 2020 the Court of Appeal found that the High Court judge had made errors in his approach to assessing whether the transfer should be allowed to go ahead. The Court of Appeal therefore ordered that the original decision of the High Court be set aside.

As a result, the proposed transfer is to be put before the High Court again for approval.

Preliminary hearing at the High Court

A preliminary hearing has been scheduled with the High Court on 23 July 2021. This hearing will be solely concerned with procedural matters and will not consider the merits of the Scheme (which is the legal document setting out all the details of the proposed transfer). Its purpose is to update the High Court on the transfer process and provide a detailed plan of how we intend to update impacted policyholders about it.

Policyholders may attend the preliminary hearing, but it will be at the discretion of the High Court as to whether it will hear any representations (which may relate to procedural matters only) from policyholders at the preliminary hearing. If you wish to attend the preliminary hearing, please let us know using our usual contact details. If you do not have our contact details to hand, please use our Contact page

We will try to pass on any details of the preliminary hearing as soon as we know them. However, we suggest that you refer to the latest information available from the High Court to check what the prevailing measures mandated or recommended by the UK government (and on the procedures operated by the High Court) in relation to the COVID-19 pandemic. We expect the High Court to publish the arrangements for the preliminary hearing on the afternoon of 22 July 2021 at:

gov.uk/government/publications/business-and-property-courts-rolls-building-cause-list/business-and-property-courts-of-england-and-wales-cause-list

If you believe you would be adversely affected by the proposed transfer, you have a right to attend and express your concerns at a second hearing later in the year. It is at this hearing that the High Court will decide whether to approve the proposed transfer. We will update this webpage when the date of the second hearing is known.

How this affects Rothesay policyholders

Whether or not the transfer is approved by the High Court, there will be no change to your Rothesay policy or the way that it is operated. The same dedicated pensions team continues to look after the administration and, if applicable, payment of your pension.

More details

All the reports and other materials from the process before the High Court hearing in 2019 are available in the Document Library. Updated reports will be added following the preliminary hearing.

Document Library

Contacting us with queries

If you are a current Rothesay policyholder please contact us in the normal way. If you do not have our contact details to hand please use our Contact page.

If you are a Prudential policyholder please refer to the information provided at:

pru.co.uk/annuitytransfer