Susman Godfrey To Get $101M in Landmark Settlement against AXA Equitable Life Insurance Co.


The legal battle unveiled that AXA’s “cost of insurance” hikes were exclusively directed at policyholders over the age of 70 with a current face value exceeding $1 million. These increases ranged from a shocking 25% to an eye-pop

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ping 70% and more, adding a sense of bewilderment to the story.

Questioning AXA’s Motives

“The foundation’s stance was clear and resolute: AXA’s tactics were unjust because universal life policies were designed to enable policyholders to reduce their premium payments and keep policy account values as low as possible,” said the foundation in its original complaint.

The foundation’s argument was compelling. After all, it is difficult to rationalize a policyholder on a $1 million face value, issued at age 70, being more likely to pass away significantly earlier than a policyholder with a $900,000 face value issued at the same age. This perplexing rationale presented readers with a conundrum, raising doubts about AXA’s motives.

AXA’s Devious Strategy

As the legal battle unfolded, it became clear that AXA was attempting to pressure policyholders into two unsavory choices: pay exorbitant premiums that no longer justified the promised death benefits or surrender their policies, thus forfeiting the premiums they had previously paid. This strategic maneuver by AXA added a burst of tension and intrigue to the story, leaving readers on the edge of their seats.

Susman Godfrey To Get $101M : The Financial Impact

In an unexpected twist, the Brach Family Foundation uncovered a startling revelation. AXA, in its 2016 Securities and Exchange Commission filing, had projected a $46 million boost in net earnings as a result of these insurance cost increases. This revelation left readers flabbergasted at the financial implications of AXA’s actions.

The Battle of Reasoning

AXA defended its actions by claiming that the cost-of-insurance increase was justified due to the affected policyholders dying sooner than anticipated, combined with less favorable investment outcomes than expected. This assertion by AXA introduced a layer of complexity and contradiction into the narrative, leaving readers to ponder the battle of reasoning between the parties involved.

Legal Eagles Behind the Scenes

Representing the Brach Family Foundation is an impressive team of legal experts, including Frances Sarah Lewis, Glenn Charles Bridgman, Mark P. Musico, Rohit Nath, Seth D. Ard, Steven Gerald Sklaver, Halley Wilder Josephs, and Raj Mathur, all from Susman Godfrey LLP.