Some of Mr. Affleck’s More Interesting “Expert Witness” Cases
Product Design Issues | Class Actions | Sales Illustration Misrepresentations |
Incorrectly Issued Policy
Policy Replacements | Risk Classification Issues | Company Communication Issues
- Agent showed plaintiff variable life illustration, but ended up with fixed universal life (with similar sounding name and because agent wasn’t equity-licensed).
- Provided report analyzing illustrations, correspondence, annual statements.
- Prepared model to calculate damages (lost investment returns).
Insufficient Disclosure of Complicated Survivorship Product Design
- Prepared report analyzing illustrations, correspondence, annual reports, and complicated (and inappropriate) policy design.
- Devised unique set of graphs depicting various survivorship scenarios.
Faulty Operation of Policy’s Disability Waiver Benefit
- Uncovered insufficient premium being waived into universal life policy under disability provision. Also uncovered inconsistency between premium being waived and undisclosed premium assumption underlying annual report “prognostications” of projected lapse dates resulting in gross misrepresentation of policy’s status.
- Provided multiple reports analyzing issues and documents and responding to insurance company’s response to plaintiff’s inquiries.
Alleged Insufficient Disclosure of Policy Provisions and Improper Sales Practices
- Plaintiffs alleged agent followed inappropriate sales practices and failed to
adequately disclose policy provisions of complex policy form.
- Testified at deposition and at arbitration on behalf of defendant agent.
- Devised spreadsheet models that demonstrated actual policies were issued and
being administered in accordance with how they had been originally illustrated.
Alleged Unsuitable Policies and Unsuitable Policy Provisions
- Plaintiff alleged policies on large charitable case were not issued (or being
administered) in accordance with originally agreed upon design.
- Provided report analyzing sales illustrations, policies as issued, and policy annual reports demonstrating how policies were being administered.
- Provided deposition testimony that disputed plaintiff’s contentions and supported defendant agent’s sales practices.
Alleged Unsuitable Policy for Estate Planning Purposes
- Plaintiff alleged whole life policy that was sold as an estate planning tool was unsuitable for that purpose and that a lower premium life insurance form should
have been presented and would have been more suitable.
- Provided report analyzing sales illustration and trust provisions.
- Provided deposition testimony that supported defendant agent’s sales practices, particularly his recommendation of whole life policy.
State-wide Class Action Alleging Misrepresentation of "Vanishing Premiums"
- Provided report that analyzed vanishing premiums, dividends, insurance company's dividend history, and disclosures on several illustrations.
- Advised plaintiff during deposition of insurance company experts.
- Did extensive analysis of defendant's exhibits.
National Class Action Alleging Misrepresentation of "Vanishing Premiums"
- Prepared report outlining issues and questions resulting from review of company's responses to Schedule M Interrogatory and Exhibit 8 Interrogatory for 1988-2000.
- Provided advice and counsel regarding settlement offer and alternatives.
State-wide Class Action Alleging Mistreatment of
Participating Annuity Dividends
- Prepared report after reviewing internal company
memos and company annual reports
- Provided deposition testimony supporting
plaintiffs’ contention that company misallocated
cash values of existing participating annuity
- Testified at trial regarding company’s investment
of participating annuity cash values
Misrepresentation of "Minimum Deposit" Sales Illustration
- Provided report that analyzed illustrations & correspondence.
- Provided several charts demonstrating root causes of why minimum deposit premise was disassembling.
Misrepresentation of Impact of Policy Loan on Section 1035 Exchange
- Uncovered role of transferred loan in complete disassembly of policy.
- Provided report analyzing issues and documents.
Misrepresentation of UL Policy Illustrated under Controversial Split Dollar Premise
- Provided report assessing merits of policies and the issues surrounding controversial split dollar plan that had been proposed.
Survivorship Variable UL Never Got Revised Illustration
- Two large VUL policies had been illustrated on a much more favorable risk classification than how the policies were actually issued and administered.
- Provided report that included a "revised" illustration of how policy should have been illustrated which became basis for subsequent article in July, 2007 issue of the Journal of Financial Service Professionals.
- Advised plaintiff's attorneys during weeklong NASD arbitration hearing.
Inadequate Disclosure of Lapse Provision
- Another counterintuitive lapse provision caused by surrender charge. Insured died before reinstatement, and company denied death claim.
- This case was the basis for the subsequent article published in the May, 2006 issue of Journal of Financial Service Professionals.
Excessive Multiple Replacements
- Provided report that analyzed the replacements, including chart that provided a “replacement roadmap”.
- Prepared model that determined plaintiff's losses stemming from replacement activity.
Improper Replacement & Counterintuitive Lapse Provision
- Provided report that discussed replacement issues, analyzed sales illustrations, and dissected counterintuitive lapse provision (i.e., on basis of surrender value rather than account value) that was also the basis for the article in May, 2006 issue of the Journal of Financial Service Professionals.
- Prepared Rate of Return analysis of various settlement offers.
Agent Initiated Unwise Replacement, Grossly Distorted Premium Requirement
- Provided report analyzing replacement issues & regulations, and comparing features and cost factors of the two policies.
- Interceded in communication efforts with company to request in-force illustrations and alternative methods of dealing with problem of funding new policy.
Juvenile Insureds Treated as "Smokers"
- Analyzed original sales illustrations and in-force ledgers to compare differences in cost of insurance charges and impact on projected and actual benefits.
- Conducted survey of how life insurance industry treats juveniles re their smoking habits, i.e., specifically whole life premium rates and UL cost of insurance rates, which was later utilized in several national class actions.
Survivorship Replacement Ends Up with One Insured Classified as "Uninsurable"
- Provided report analyzing sales illustrations and other documents.
- Devised spreadsheet model that replicated "revised illustration" that would have demonstrated additional outlays needed because of "uninsurable" risk classification.
Sales Illustration Assumed Non-Smoker, But Policy Issued as "Smoker"
- Uncovered disconnect between illustration which assumed non-smoker and actual policy which classified insured as smoker.
- Prepared report critiquing absence of revised illustration that would have disclosed impact of less favorable risk classification.
Company Failed to Update Universal Life Additional Premium Requirements
- Prepared report analyzing issues, devised spreadsheet to replicate how policy might have performed if the policy’s premium had been updated periodically.
Insufficient Notice of Policy Status in Annual Reports
- Prepared report analyzing state regulations regarding illustrations and insurance company notification of universal life status in policy owner annual reports.
Inadequate Communication by Company Regarding "Vanishing Premium" Plan
- Resulted in denial of death claim.
- Prepared report analyzing “vanishing premium” scenario that was further complicated by large policy loan.
- Analyzed industry standards regarding notification to policy owners when whole life “vanishing premium” scenarios run out of dividend.
Universal Life Grace Period Notices Were Late and
Asked for Too Much Premium
- Prepared report analyzing timing and content of
multiple grace period notices
- Provided deposition testimony supporting
plaintiff’s contention that grace period notices
were sent out halfway through grace period and
asked for a premium to get the policy out of
grace that was higher than what contractual
verbiage called for