Aviva Plc asked a court in London to approve the transfer of assets totaling 9 billion euros ($ 10.2 billion), with the uncertainty of the Brexit "increasing" when it joined other insurers and banks that produced contingency plans.

Aviva asked Judge Richard Snowden for permission to move the life insurance policy of non-U.K. policyholders of its Irish subsidiary. The insurer wants to take the step to avoid the risk of payments being delayed if the United Kingdom experiences a heavy Brexit.

"The reason to propose it, your Lord will not be surprised to know, is Brexit," said Martin Moore, a lawyer for Aviva, who also advised UBS Group AG on her recent asset transfer. "The current and increasing uncertainty makes the need for security all the more urgent."

"It will clearly take some time before the clarity comes up," Moore said.

Aviva received approval earlier this month to move 1 billion pounds ($ 1.29 billion) into the general policy.

British insurers are concerned that they will lose so-called "passport rights" that allow them to make payments to policyholders outside of Britain. Without a deal, insurers and pension providers could be legally excluded from sending payments, leaving policy on their accounts.

Royal London, the largest mutual and pension company in the United Kingdom, has this month obtained the approval of the court to transfer the policy to its Irish unit.

"It is worth repeating that this is not an arrangement that Royal London has chosen for its own commercial purposes and is forced by the continuing uncertainty about Brexit," the judge said at the time.

Copyright 2019 Bloomberg.

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