Overview: Transfer of Certain Equitable Annuity Contracts and Life Insurance Policies

In connection with a transfer offer package that clients are receiving from Equitable Financial Life Insurance Company (Equitable Financial), this microsite is meant to provide responses to frequently asked questions that clients may have regarding the offer. The information below can be used alongside the contents within the transfer offer package to help clients understand the offer. 

What is happening?

Equitable Financial Life Insurance Company is transferring certain annuity contracts and life insurance policies as part of an initiative to align our corporate structure with the rest of the industry. Making these moves will enable us to improve our financial flexibility, maintain the strength and stability of our company and provide attractive offerings in the future.

Select contracts and policies will transfer to one of three different receiving companies:

  • Equitable Financial Life Insurance Company of America (Equitable America or EFLOA), a wholly owned subsidiary of Equitable Holdings, Inc.

  • Equitable Financial Life and Annuity Company (Equitable Colorado of EFLA), a wholly owned subsidiary of Equitable Holdings, Inc. 

  • Venerable Insurance and Annuity Company (Venerable), a trusted reinsurer for the Equitable carriers and other insurance carriers. Equitable Holdings, Inc. has a 9.1% equity stake in the parent company of Venerable and a seat on its Board of Directors.

The transfers will take place over a 3-year period, beginning the first quarter of 2025. Please note these dates represent current estimates and are subject to change:

Target dates and receiving companies for the three transfer waves

 

After the transfer, the receiving company will become the issuer and insurer of the contract or policy. There will be no change to the features, benefits, and existing contract/policy terms. The transfer process will vary, depending on the state where the contract or policy was issued. See the FAQs and state chart below for more details.

For additional questions not mentioned below, a toll free telephone support line is available at 855-433-4015 (Equitable America/Equitable Colorado), 855-433-4025 (Venerable).

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Background / Rationale

  • 1. Why is Equitable Financial transferring my contract or policy?
    Equitable Financial is transferring certain annuity contracts and life insurance policies to align our corporate structure with the rest of the industry. Making these moves will enable us to improve our financial flexibility, maintain the strength and stability of our company and provide attractive offerings in the future.
  • 2. How can I confirm that this offer legitimately originated from Equitable Financial?

    This is a legitimate offer from Equitable Financial Life Insurance Company (Equitable Financial). There are two ways to verify this offer is not fraudulent:

     

    • You can log into equitable.com with your username and password to view specific contract or policy information, along with digital copies of the transfer offer package received in the mail. (If you have never registered on equitable.com, you will need your contract/policy number and some personal information to complete registration.)You can also contact your Financial Professional to confirm.
    • You can also contact your Financial Professional to confirm.
  • 3. Was this transfer transaction reviewed and approved by regulators?

    The transfer offer and transaction has been approved by the New York State Department of Financial Services and the insurance departments of Arizona, Colorado, and Iowa (the states where Equitable America, Equitable Colorado and Venerable are based, respectively). The transaction was also filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) for the variable annuity products and the prospectuses have been declared effective.

  • 4. What actions will I need to take?

    Your transfer offer will outline your applicable options. The action you need to take depends on the requirements of your particular transfer:

    • Negative Consent/Opt-out: No action is required if you consent to the transfer. To reject the offer, you will need to complete and return the response form in the package to stay with Equitable Financial.
    • Affirmative Consent/Opt-in: You must complete and return the response form in the package to accept the transfer offer and the contract/policy will be transferred.
    • Automatic (No) Consent: No action is required. The transfer is automatic and we will not require a response.
  • 5. Do I have a choice?

    It depends on the requirements in your residence state and the type of contract or policy you have.

     

    In states with Affirmative Consent/Opt-in requirements:

    Yes, you have a choice. You sign and send back the form to accept the transfer offer. Keep in mind transferring to Equitable America or Equitable Colorado will have no impact on the features, benefits, and services you have today. There will be no change to the way you access information and request transactions. Transferring to Venerable also would not impact your features or benefits, but the ways you access your account will change.

     

    Negative Consent/Opt-out:

    Yes, you have a choice. You must sign and send back the form to reject the transfer offer and the contract will stay with Equitable Financial. Keep in mind transferring to Equitable America or Equitable Colorado will have no impact on the features, benefits, and services you have today. There will be no change to the way you access information and request transactions. Transferring to Venerable also would not impact your features or benefits, but the ways you access your account will change.

     

    Automatic (No) Consent:

    You do not have a choice because the transfer will be automatic, and we will not need a response from you. In this instance, we are moving your contract or policy to our flagship company, and you will be staying within the Equitable family. There will be no impact on the benefits, features or services you have today and there will be no change in the way you access information or request transactions.
  • 6. How am I impacted by the transfer of a contract/policy?
    You will not be positively or negatively impacted by the transfer. Contracts/policies transferred will retain all the features and benefits as provided under the applicable annuity contract or insurance policy with the replacement company. Financial information about the replacement company has been provided in the transfer offer package for you to review. 
  • 7. Where I have a choice, are there negative impacts if I decline the transfer offer?
    There is no negative impact if you do not transfer the applicable annuity contract or life insurance policy to the replacement company. If you do not transfer the contract/policy, it will remain insured with Equitable Financial Life Insurance Company.
  • 8. Why is there automatic consent for Equitable America in certain states?

    Equitable America is our flagship company for issuing new life insurance and annuity business and as a result, we are not requiring consent for transfers to that company in states where that is permissible. For transfers to Venerable and Equitable Colorado, we are offering clients an opportunity to opt-out in states without express consent requirements for life insurance contracts. Please note consent requirements are subject to regulatory approval and may change after state filings.

  • 9. Which company will replace Equitable Financial as the insurer of a transferred contract/policy?

    One of the following three receiving companies will be the replacement insurer, depending on the contract or policy owned:

     

    • Equitable Financial Life Insurance Company of America (“Equitable America” or EFLOA) based in Arizona and wholly-owned by Equitable Holdings, the parent company of Equitable Financial
    • Equitable Financial Life and Annuity Company (“Equitable Colorado” or EFLA): based in Colorado and wholly-owned by Equitable Holdings
    • Venerable Insurance and Annuity Company (“Venerable”), based in Iowa and wholly-owned by Venerable Holdings. Note Equitable’s relationship with this company began with a $12bn reinsurance transaction in 2021. Equitable Holdings now has a 9.1% equity stake in the parent company, as well as a seat on its Board of Directors.
  • 10. Which contracts/policies are eligible for transfer?
    • Contracts/policies eligible for transfer are as follows:

    Equitable America

    The following products issued on or before September 30, 2022 (except as noted below), out of Equitable Financial (excluding New York issued and resident contracts/policies, Virgin Islands resident contracts/policies, externally reinsured contracts, contracts with non-US mailing addresses, annuitized contracts, and some additional exceptions):

    Variable Annuities

    • Retirement Cornerstone® (RC): All Series (excluding RC 15 Series E)
    • Structured Capital Strategies® (SCS): All Series
    • Investment Edge®: All Series (excluding the original product series launched in November 2013)
    • EQUI-VEST®: All Series/Markets (issued on or before January 31, 2023)

      Excludes EQUI-VEST Vantage and EQUI-VEST Strategies Group plans.

      Life Insurance

    • Athena Universal Life 2/3/4/5: All Series
    • Athena Indexed Universal Life: Series 151

    Equitable Colorado

    Accumulator®: Series 02, 04, 06, 07, 7.5, 8.1, 8.2 and 09 contracts

    • Excluding Series 06, 07, and 8.1 contracts that are reinsured by Venerable.
    • Excluding New York, Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico issued and resident contracts, contracts with Fixed Maturity Options (FMOs), contracts with non-US mailing addresses, externally reinsured contracts, annuitized contracts, and some additional minor exceptions.

    VENERABLE

    Accumulator®: Series 06, 07, and 8.1 contracts reinsured by Venerable

    • Excluding Alaska and Puerto Rico issued contracts, New York issued and resident contracts, contracts with FMOs, contracts with non-US mailing addresses and some additional minor exceptions.
    • Contracts that are annuitized beginning June 1, 2021, and later are included in the transfer offer. Contracts annuitized prior to this date are not included in the transfer offer.

     


  • 11. When will contracts be transferred?
    • The contract/policy transfers will be implemented in waves estimated to occur in 2025, 2026 and 2027 as follows:

     

    VENERABLE

    Equitable Colorado

    Equitable America

    First wave of contract transfer

    Q1 2025

    Q2 2025

    Q2 2025

    Second wave of contract transfer

    Q1 2026

    N/A

    N/A

    Third wave of contract transfer

    Q1 2027

    Q2 2027

    Q2 2027

     

  • 12. What information is available about Equitable America?

    Established in 1969, Equitable America is a wholly owned indirect subsidiary of Equitable Holdings that provides annuities, life insurance and employee benefit products to individuals and small to medium-sized businesses. It is now our flagship company and issues most of our new business.

    Equitable America maintains strong financial strength ratings, which rank among the highest levels across top rating agencies. [AM Best (A); S&P (A+); Moody’s (A1)] Equitable Holdings, Inc. is committed to ensuring that Equitable America and its other operating entities are well-capitalized at or above its minimum capitalization targets. Additionally, regulators ensure the company has adequate reserves to meet its obligations.

    As part of the Equitable family, servicing and administration of transferred contracts will continue to be provided uninterrupted by the Equitable Service Centers once the transfer is complete.

  • 13. What information is available about Equitable Colorado?

    Established in 1984, Equitable Colorado is a wholly-owned indirect subsidiary of Equitable Holdings, providing life insurance products to individuals. Its offerings are now being expanded to include annuities.

    Equitable Colorado maintains a strong financial strength rating (A+), which ranks among the highest levels with a top rating agency (S&P). Equitable Holdings, Inc. is committed to ensuring that Equitable Colorado and its other operating entities are well-capitalized at or above its minimum capitalization targets. Additionally, regulators ensure the company has adequate reserves to meet its obligations.

    As part of the Equitable family, servicing and administration of transferred contracts will continue to be provided uninterrupted by the Equitable Service Centers once the transfer is complete.

  • 14. What information is available about Venerable?

    Venerable began issuing annuities nearly 50 years ago. Following the merger of several other insurers, Venerable became the flagship retail annuity issuer under ING Group and was later spun off as Voya Financial.

    Venerable debuted as a private company on June 1, 2018, a result of Voya divesting substantially all its annuity business. It is a leading variable annuity management company and is a trusted reinsurer for Equitable and other carriers. Equitable Holdings, Inc. has a 9.1% equity stake in the parent company of Venerable and has a seat on its Board of Directors.

    Venerable maintains a robust capital position and has a strong financial strength rating (A) from Kroll Bond Rating Agency (KBRA), one of 10 credit rating agencies designated as a Nationally Recognized Statistical Rating Organization (“NRSRO”) by the SEC. Since Venerable no longer issues new business, additional ratings from other ratings agencies are not expected to be pursued.

  • 15. Is there a fee associated with the transfer?
    No, there are no fees associated with the transfer.
  • 16. Will there be new prospectuses? (For annuity contracts only)

    An Exchange Offer Prospectus Supplement and either an Initial Summary Prospectus (ISP) or Statutory Prospectus (as applicable) are provided in the transfer offer package.

    After a contract is transferred to Equitable America or Equitable Colorado, contract owners will begin to receive inforce prospectuses that are co-branded to reflect all issuing companies.

    After a contract is transferred to Venerable, contract owners will begin to receive inforce prospectuses from Venerable.
  • 17. Why are certain contracts being transferred to Venerable?
    Venerable currently reinsures all the contracts eligible for transfer to Venerable. Transferring these contracts will provide Venerable with even greater, real-time visibility into the performance and behavior of the portfolio for more efficient risk management. 

Correspondence

  • 18. What was included in my package?

    The initial transfer offer package includes:

    1. Mailing cover page itemizing the contents of the package
    2. Regulatory approved client Notice of Transfer letter with details of the offer. There are 3 different versions of the letter based on the consent requirement for the state/jurisdiction (opt-in, opt-out or automatic consent)
    3. Opt-in or Opt-out consent response form (where applicable)
    4. Postage-Paid Business Reply envelope – included with Opt-in and Opt-out consent packages
    5. Financial Strength Ratings for Equitable Financial and the receiving company
    6. Equitable Financial Balance Sheets – at least the most recent 2 year-ends and the latest quarter-end
    7. Receiving company’s Balance Sheets – at least the most recent 2 year-ends and the latest quarter-end
    8. Exchange Offer Prospectus Supplement (describing the offer) issued by the receiving company – applicable to variable annuity products only
    9. Either an Initial Summary Prospectus or a Statutory Prospectus issued by the receiving company – applicable to variable annuity products only

    Certain states require the inclusion of the Management’s Discussion and Analysis supplement for the most recent year end financial statement for Equitable Financial and the receiving company.

    Each jurisdiction with an opt-in or opt-out consent requirement requires at least 2 mailings to the client if there is no response after the waiting period for the first mailing. The subsequent mailings may not include the Exchange Offer Prospectus Supplement and the Initial Summary/Statutory Prospectus.

    The transfer offer package will be provided to you electronically via Equitable.com if:

    • The replacement company is Equitable America
    • The state has no explicit consent requirements for insurance contracts
    • You are enrolled in Equitable’s e-delivery program
    In all other instances, the transfer offer package will be sent via U.S. Postal Service. Once the transfer offer package has been mailed, the contents of the package will be viewable on equitable.com for clients.
  • 19. If there are joint or multiple owners, who will receive the package?

    Depending on the contract/policy issued:

    • Joint or multiple owners residing at the same address will receive one offer package with one response form capturing both signatures, with the exception of life insurance policy holders who will receive separate response forms for each owner's signature.
    • Joint or multiple owners residing at different addresses will each receive an offer package.
    Copies of all transfer offer packages will be available on equitable.com and clients who jointly own contracts and policies can review the documentation provided in the package and/or reprint response forms if required.  
  • 20. Will owners who own multiple contracts receive one package for all contracts?
    No. Owners will receive one offer package for each contract/policy eligible. Consent is required for each contract/policy separately and each response form is customized to include the contract/policy number applicable to the eligible contract/policy.
  • 21. Whose signature is acceptable on the response form?

    Signature requirements vary, depending on the type of annuity or life insurance policy owned.

    • For single owner contracts/policies, the owner’s signature is the only acceptable signature on the response form.
    • For joint or multiple owner contracts/policies, a signature from each owner is required to opt-in. A signature from only one owner is required to opt-out.
    • For non-natural owned contracts (other than custodial IRA contracts), signature of an authorized signer for the owner is acceptable.
    For Custodial IRA contracts, the signature of the annuitant will be accepted on the response forms.
  • 22. Can responses be submitted online?
    No. Response forms cannot be submitted online.
  • 23. Can an advisor respond on my behalf?
    No. We will only accept your signature on the response form (included within the transfer offer). Only you can respond to either opt in or opt out of the contract transfer.
  • 24. Could I receive additional correspondence prior to transfer?

    Yes, you could receive additional communications in certain situations:

    • Not in good order (NIGO) notification: You could receive a NIGO letter for any of these reasons:
      • ­Neither of the two boxes (accept or reject) was checked on the response form
      • ­Both boxes (accept and reject) were checked on the response form
      • ­The response form is not signed.
      • ­Only one owner’s signature is on the joint or multiple owner response form (for individual retirement contracts and life insurance policies where joint or multiple owners reside at the same address)
      • ­The response is not legible.
    • Notification for contracts/policies that are no longer eligible for transfer: You could receive a notification removing a contract or policy from eligibility. To find out the specific reason why a contract is no longer eligible, you can call customer service at 855-433-4015 (Equitable America/Equitable Colorado), 855-433-4025 (Venerable).
    • Contract Transfer Effective Date Notification: You will receive a notification of the date the contract transfer will occur when a response has been received prior to the second mailing scheduled. In such cases, the second mailing will not occur.  Note that the effective date of the transfer is included in your second package.
  • 25. Why did clients/families that own multiple contracts/policies receive a package for some but not all the contracts/policies they own?
    Contracts/policies that are not reinsured by either Equitable America or Venerable were not included in the offer. Additionally, contracts/policies issued in certain states/jurisdictions were excluded. Other exclusions include (but are not limited to) contracts and policies with foreign mailing addresses or contracts that have fixed maturity options (FMOs).
  • 26. Why did I receive notification that my contract/policy is no longer eligible to be transferred?
    Some contracts/policies are not receiving the transfer offer right now. There are different factors that can exclude them. If a contract/policy is no longer eligible for transfer, you do not have to take any action. You may call customer service at 855-433-4015 (Equitable America/Equitable Colorado) / 855-433-4025 (Venerable) for specific reasons why the contract is no longer eligible.
  • 27. What will I receive after a contract policy transfers?

    Within a few days of the transfer, you will receive:

    • A “Certificate of Assumption” will be sent. This is a contract/policy endorsement from the receiving company that will append the annuity contract or life insurance policy and make it the new issuer or insurer. It should be kept with the original contract/policy for future reference. You may also receive a cover letter noting changes in banking information, if necessary. For joint or multiple owners, only one document will be sent to the primary joint or multiple owner’s address.
    • Where applicable, a financial confirmation notice providing information on the transfer from Equitable Financial to the other company. Please note:
    • ­Annuitized contracts and life insurance policies will not have a financial confirmation notice.
    • ­For contracts transferring to Venerable, a confirmation notice will be sent by Equitable Financial showing the transfer of the contract out of Equitable Financial, and a corresponding confirmation notice will be sent by Venerable showing the receipt of the contract by Venerable.
    • ­Like with any other confirmation notice, contracts with joint or multiple owners will be sent only one confirm notice to the primary joint or multiple owner’s address.
    For contracts transferred to Venerable, you will also receive a “Welcome Package” from Venerable at least a week prior to the contract transfer date.

Servicing

  • 28. How will Service Support be maintained on transferred contracts?

    Service support will depend on the receiving company:

    • Equitable America and Equitable Colorado: Contracts/policies transferred to Equitable America and Equitable Colorado will continue to be administered by Equitable Service Centers as they are today.

    • Venerable: Contracts transferred to Venerable will be administered and supported by the Venerable Customer Experience Center at www.Venerable.com or by calling 800-366-0066.[1] Note that prior to contract transfer, the Venerable Customer Experience Center will not be able to assist with inquires.
    • All Transfers: There are two dedicated toll-free numbers with customer service representatives available to address inquiries regarding the transfer and to ensure a seamless transition:
      • For transfers to Equitable America and Equitable Colorado, the number is (855) 433-4015
      • For transfers to Venerable, the number is (855) 433-4025

    [1]Digital solutions are at the cornerstone of Venerable’s service strategy, allowing for an enriched experience and prompt service response times for distributors and customers. An easy-to-use web-portal allows for book of business and account management, including use of pre-populated forms and a variety of other financial and non-financial transactions. This dynamic portal is coupled with a robust notification process that can be customized to individual needs. Venerable’s service teams are also equipped with knowledge management tools that provide quick access to customer and distributor account details, allowing for more effective interactions.

  • 29. Will my Financial Professional (FP) change as a result of the transfer?
    Financial Professionals will not change as a result of the contract transfer and your FP will have a copy of the transfer offer package.
  • 30. What is the impact if I am currently taking recurring distributions from my contract [RMDs, SWOs etc]?

    There will be no impact to recurring distributions that are being taken out of contracts/policies.

    For contracts transferred to Equitable America and Equitable Colorado, distributions will be made according to the existing cadence and paid in the manner as originally requested, with a change in payor of the distributed amount to Equitable Colorado or Equitable America, respectively.

    For contracts transferred to Venerable, distributions will continue to be made according to the existing cadence and paid in the manner as originally requested. However, the payor of the distributed amount will now be Venerable instead of Equitable Financial.
  • 31. Will I continue to receive distributions or annuity payments?
    There will be no impact to your annuity payments. Payments will continue to be made according to the existing cadence and paid in the manner as originally requested. For contracts transferred to Venerable, the payor of the distributed amount will now be Venerable instead of Equitable Financial. 
  • 32. What will be the impact on the contract values or benefits?

    There will be no impact to the contract values as of the effective date of the contract transfer.

    All features and benefits applicable to the respective contracts/policies will operate as stated per the terms of the contracts and policies.

  • 33. Will there be changes to service forms?
    • For contracts transferred to Equitable America and Equitable Colorado, service forms will be co-branded and will be updated to reflect all issuing companies.
    • For contracts transferred to Venerable, new service forms from Venerable will be made available.
  • 34. How will the tax forms be impacted for distributions received during the year of contract transfer?

    Tax forms will vary depending on the receiving company:

    • Equitable America and Equitable Colorado: Contracts transferred to Equitable America or Equitable Colorado may receive 2 of each required tax forms: one from Equitable Financial for any distributions taken while the contract was insured by Equitable Financial, and one from either Equitable America or Equitable Colorado (as applicable) for any distributions taken after the transfer.
    • Venerable: Contracts transferred to Venerable may receive 2 of each required tax forms: one from Equitable Financial for any distributions taken while the contract was insured by Equitable Financial, and one from Venerable for any distributions taken after the transfer. Tax forms for contracts transferred to Venerable will be available on Venerable’s web portal. They will also be available on the Equitable Client Portal for 3 years after the transfer date.
  • 35. How will transferred contracts be displayed on the Equitable Client website?

    Prior to the transfer, all contracts/policies that are eligible for transfer offer will display a transfer status on equitable.com with copies of the documents provided in the transfer offer package. In addition:

    • For Equitable America and Equitable Colorado: Contracts or policies transferred to Equitable America or Equitable Colorado will continue to display on your website with no changes. All tools currently accessible will remain unchanged.
    • For Venerable: After a contract is transferred, the old Equitable contract number and the new Venerable contract number will both be displayed on the Equitable Client Portal for 1 year after the transfer, however, contract details will not be visible. There will be a notice indicating the contract has been transferred to Venerable with a link to Venerable’s website. Note that tax forms will be available on your Equitable Client Portal for 3 years after the transfer date.
  • 36. Will the replacement entity re-issue the contract policy?

    For Equitable America and Equitable Colorado, there will be no changes as of the transfer date and the contract or policy number will remain unchanged. Upon transfer, you will receive a “Certificate of Assumption” that should be kept with your original annuity contract or life insurance policy, as applicable. For more information, please see FAQ #27 “What will I receive after a contract/policy transfers?”.

    For Venerable, a Certificate of Assumption with a new contract number will be assigned and Venerable will be the insurer without any changes to the features and benefits as of the transfer date. The contract will not be re-issued.
  • 37. Will this transfer create a taxable event?
    No. The contract transfer is not a taxable event and a 1099 will not be sent when the insurer/issuer of the contract is changed.
  • 38. Will this transfer impact an outstanding loan under the contract/policy?

    Any existing loans on a contract or policy will not be impacted. Loan conditions and repayments will stay the same as outlined in the loan agreement.

    Any loan repayments will be made to the new insurer when the contract transfer becomes effective.

    The current terms of the contract or policy, which do not change, will determine if you can take any loans in the future.
  • 39. How can I confirm that my contract/policy was transferred (or not transferred)?

    You can always review the status of your contract/policy through equitable.com. Information on the transfer offer mailing date, due date for a response (if applicable) and the scheduled transfer date will be provided for contracts/policies that have been mailed a transfer offer.

    After the transfer is complete, a contract/policy Certificate of Assumption will be mailed. A confirmation notice will also be sent for annuity transfers.
  • 40. Will banking information change after the contract/policy transfers?
    For certain contracts, banking information could change if the contract is transferred. If a change to banking information is required, you will be provided with the new banking details with the Certificate of Assumption after the transfer.  For more information, see FAQ #27 “What will I receive after a contract/policy transfers?” 

Equitable is the brand name of the retirement and protection subsidiaries of Equitable Holdings, Inc., including Equitable Financial Life Insurance Company (Equitable Financial) (NY, NY), Equitable Financial Life and Annuity Company (Equitable Colorado) (Charlotte, NC) (Equitable Financial Life Insurance and Annuity Company in CA) and Equitable Financial Life Insurance Company of America (Equitable America), an AZ stock company with an administrative office in Charlotte, NC; and Equitable Distributors, LLC.

GE-6709713.1 (06/2024) (Exp. 06/2026)