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William F. McMurry - Lead Class Counsel Obtains $16.4 Million Settlement for Elderly Clients
Date:7/17/2008

LOUISVILLE, Ky., July 17 /PRNewswire/ -- William F. McMurry, a Nationally Board Certified Specialist in Medical Malpractice and Legal Malpractice, obtained today final Court approval of a settlement in the first nationwide class action suit ever certified by a Kentucky state court judge. The settlement gives economic and equitable relief as many as 24,000 purchasers of deferred annuities. The Settlement is valued at approximately $16,400,000.

American Equity Investment Life Insurance Company was accused of participating in a Living Trust mill. Working in concert with a Dallas-based insurance and legal marketing firm (Advanced Legal Marketing Services and Addison Insurance Marketing) and local attorneys, agents persuaded senior citizens to buy a Living Trust out of fear that probate proceedings were costly and not in their family's best interest. After the victims purchased the Living Trust, agents of the insurance and marketing companies, appearing as representatives of the law firm, approached the victims and encouraged the victim to sell their current investments and purchase deferred annuities from American Equity Investment Life Insurance Company of Des Moines, Iowa.

These deferred annuities were often sold to elderly couples with 20-year terms, even though they were approaching their life expectancy. Surrender charges for early withdrawal were substantial.

As part of the Settlement, American Equity agreed that it would no longer sell deferred annuities where the Company has knowledge that sales leads were generated through the sale and/or marketing of living trusts.

The Settlement offers Class Members a new option in connection with their annuity contracts, namely, the right to immediately annuitize funds, with a 2.4% bonus added to the value of their policies. American Equity also agreed to waive the penalties and forfeitures, such as surrender charges, that Class Members who decide to annuitize immediately would incur but fo
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SOURCE Courtroomlaw.com
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