’It is such a privilege to be the first participant in our sector,’ says group general counsel 

Aviva has become the first business from the insurance and pensions sector to join the Dormant Assets Scheme, a statement released yesterday (5 June 2023) said.

The insurer will join over 40 UK banks and building societies that currently participate in the scheme, which sees dormant assets used to fund social and environmental initiatives.

It comes as the scheme undergoes an expansion to include certain pension and insurance assets.

A statement said Aviva’s involvement “paves the way for other companies” in the industry to join.

Kirsty Cooper, group general counsel and company secretary for Aviva, said: “It is great to see the culmination of a lot of hard work reaching fruition and it is such a privilege to be the first participant in our sector.

“We have been involved with the Dormant Assets Scheme since 2016 and hope that Aviva’s participation will encourage other companies to take part, with the dual purpose of reuniting customers with their assets while also ensuring dormant assets can have a positive impact on our society.”

‘Prime example’

Since it was first established for banks and building societies in 2011, more than £1.6bn in dormant assets has been transferred to Reclaim Fund Limited (RFL), which administers the scheme.



It confirmed that the first transfer of dormant assets from the insurance and pensions sector to the government-backed scheme had been completed.

Jane Hanson, chair of RFL and the dormant assets expansion board, said: “I am thrilled that all the work undertaken by industry, government and RFL has come to fruition with the expansion of the Dormant Assets Scheme.

“This is a prime example of how industry and government can work together and innovate responsibly to deliver demonstrable social value.

“At a time when the rising cost of living continues to afflict communities across the UK, participating in the Dormant Assets Scheme has never been more important.”

Future funding

Dormant assets funding is distributed through the National Lottery Community Fund across the four nations of the UK.

The scheme is voluntary and all participants need to show the efforts they take to trace the original owners of dormant assets so people can be reunited with their funds at any point.

In the coming months, the scheme will open to assets in the investments and wealth management sector.

Adrian Smith, chief executive of RFL, said: “We are delighted to open the scheme to financial institutions with dormant insurance and pensions assets, enabling them to participate alongside established banks and building societies.

“The scheme is straightforward to join, tightly regulated and carefully managed so customers can trust in the lifelong promise that they can reclaim any dormant assets at any point in time.”