by John Darer® CLU ChFC MSSC RSP CLTC
Structured settlement annuitants with questions concerning the structured settlement class action settlement in Spencer v Hartford should refer to the informational web page which one can find by following this link
In reviewing the web page the structured settlement watchdog notes an inaccuracy in the "Important Note" which reads:
"Important Note: This proposed settlement does not affect your original settlement agreement with a Hartford property and casualty company in any way. It will not change the amount or timing of your payments under your structured settlement. Hartford Life will continue to have the obligation to make any outstanding structured settlement payments under your structured settlement".
It is unlikely that Hartford Life Insurance Company has the obligation to make any structured settlement payments to you, very simply, because plaintiffs do not own structured settlement annuities. Even though you can engage a representative of Hartford Life Insurance Company to change the bank account for direct deposit, change a beneficiary or submit a change of address, you do not own the annuity.
You may have to check your settlement papers or the copy of the annuity contract, but it is more likely than not that the structured settlement annuity issued by Hartford Life Insurance company is owned by Hartford Comprehensive Employee Benefits Service Company, also known as Hartford CEBSCO. This would be the case if there was a "qualified assignment".
If there was no qualified assignment and the annuity was simply "bought and held" then the Hartford Financial entity that insured the Defendant is the obligor
To recap, the owner of the structured settlement annuity is the party obligated to pay you. The annuity is a "qualified funding asset". The settlement documents that you entered into when you settled your case will likely have expressly stated that you have no interest in the contract other than the right to receive the payments.
Hartford Life Insurance Company has been known as Talcott Resolution Life Insurance Company since 2018