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C&C Family Trust 04/04/05 v. AXA Equitable Life Insurance Co.

United States District Court, N.D. Georgia, Newnan Division

August 28, 2014

C& C FAMILY TRUST 04/04/05, by and through its Trustees CYNTHIA COX-OTT and PATRICIA ANN COX, Plaintiff,
v.
AXA EQUITABLE LIFE INSURANCE COMPANY, AXA ADVISORS LLC and ARMEN HOVAKIMIAN, Defendants

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[Copyrighted Material Omitted]

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[Copyrighted Material Omitted]

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For C& C Family Trust 04/04/05, by and through its Trustees, Cynthia Cox-Ott and Patricia Ann Cox, Plaintiff: James J. Leonard, Kara Cleary, LEAD ATTORNEYS, Barnes & Thornburg LLP -GA, Atlanta, GA.

For AXA Equitable Life Insurance Company, AXA Advisors LLC, Defendants: David G. Russell, Peter Frank Busscher, LEAD ATTORNEYS, Parker, Hudson, Rainer & Dobbs, LLP, Atlanta, GA.

Page 1251

ORDER

Timothy C. Batten, Sr., United States District Judge.

I. Background[1]

In 1988, Cynthia Cox-Ott married Claude Ott. When they divorced in 2005, part of Cynthia's settlement included the establishment of a life insurance trust: Plaintiff C& C Family Trust 04/04/05.[2] The funding mechanism for the trust was a policy insuring Claude's life and naming the trust as the beneficiary. This action centers on that policy.

In August 2005, the trust took out a " flexible premium universal life insurance policy" from Defendant AXA Equitable Life Insurance Company. Before doing so, Cynthia had several discussions with Defendant Armen Hovakimian, an employee or agent of Defendants AXA Advisors LLC or AXA Equitable (or both),[3] who showed her illustrations and projections for policies issued by AXA Equitable. She selected a policy that would be paid up when Claude (then sixty-seven) turned eighty-three; provided a net death benefit of $4,000,000; and had an annual premium of $88,000. The policy was delivered to the trust on February 16, 2006.

During 2005 and 2006, AXA represented that the policy's paid-up date, net death benefit and annual premium were " guaranteed." These representations were made orally by Hovakimian and in written policy illustrations, which AXA Equitable prepared. Specifically, on February 24, 2006, eight days after the policy's delivery, Hovakimian discussed with Cynthia an " Original Illustration" showing " Guaranteed Values" for the " Annualized Premium Outlay" ($88,000) and " Net Death Benefit" ...


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