Superior Court of the State of California for the County of Alameda, Case No. RG16813803
Welcome to the website for the Class Action Lawsuit known as Larson, et al., v. John Hancock (U.S.A).
If You Own or Owned a John Hancock Flex V Life Insurance Policy, a Class Action Lawsuit May Affect Your Rights.
UPDATE - August 8, 2018: The Settlement has been finally approved by the Court and the Settlement Administrator is in the process of preparing settlement checks to be mailed by August 31, 2018.
A Settlement has been reached with John Hancock in a class action lawsuit about the cost of insurance charges deducted from policyholders’ account values. Generally, the Settlement includes all current and former Flex V2 policy owners. As part of the Settlement, Settlement Class Members will be eligible to receive a portion of a cash Settlement Fund funded by John Hancock in the amount of $59,750,000.00.
The Flex V2 is a variable whole life policy, which means it has an investment feature that allows an accumulation of value after deduction of charges. The Plaintiff alleges that John Hancock violated the policy in three different ways. First, while the policy permits John Hancock to deduct an insurance charge calculated using an “Applied Monthly Rate” that is based on “expectations of future mortality experience,” the Plaintiff alleges that John Hancock impermissibly considers factors other than mortality expectations. Second, while the policy permits a separate “Maintenance Charge” of up to $8 per month, the Plaintiff alleges that John Hancock impermissibly includes amounts that should be in the “Maintenance Charge” in the “Applied Monthly Rate.” Third, the Plaintiff alleges that the policy requires that the “Applied Monthly Rate” be reviewed “at least once every 5 policy years” and adjusted to reflect changes in “expectations of future mortality” but has not been modified.
John Hancock denies these claims. John Hancock believes that all the rates and charges it applied to the Flex V2 Life Insurance Policies are consistent with the terms of the policy. The policy includes guaranteed maximum rates, which have never been exceeded.
This website summarizes the Settlement between the Parties that impacts your rights. A full description of the Settlement is contained in the First Amended Joint Stipulation and Settlement Agreement, which includes the precise definitions of capitalized terms used in the Notice. If you are a John Hancock employee, you have the right to exclude yourself from this Settlement (see Question 11 in the Notice).