English High Court Gives Go Ahead For Closure of Long Running Orion Insurance Insolvency

The English High Court yesterday sanctioned closure schemes of arrangement for The Orion Insurance Company PLC and The London and Overseas Insurance Company PLC, paving the way for the closure of these complex and long-running insolvencies stemming from 1994.

Speaking today, Hogan Lovells partner Joe Bannister said:
"The approval of this scheme of arrangement is a major milestone in the resolution of this long, complex and international insurance bankruptcy, both for the creditors of Orion and L&O, and the London insurance market.  It is the climax of in excess of 10 years' work in an insolvency that has taken 21 years of painstaking effort to resolve. The issues that it has raised have been challenging and in some cases without precedent. We have been privileged and delighted to support the scheme administrators in their work over the past two decades".

The Orion Insurance Company PLC is now known as OIC Run-Off Limited (Orion) and The London and Overseas Insurance Company PLC is known as the London and Overseas Insurance Company Limited (L&O). The schemes are expected to become effective early in 2016, subject to their recognition under Chapter 15 of the US Bankruptcy Code.

Combining the features of both an insolvent and a solvent scheme of arrangement, the closure schemes should facilitate once and for all the determination and payment of the vast majority of creditors' claims, giving creditors a final claim submission deadline. This should lead to the conclusion of the Orion and L&O insolvencies within the next three to five years, far earlier than had previously been envisaged. 

Hogan Lovells has been at the forefront of insurance restructuring and insolvency cases for over of 20 years, with London business restructuring and insolvency partner Joe Bannister having led the Hogan Lovells team representing Orion and L&O's provisional liquidators and scheme administrators – Dan Schwarzmann and Paul Evans of PwC – on the closure process. Joe has been supported throughout much of this time by senior associate Will Beck and insurance partner Nick Atkins.

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