Timeline of Life Settlements
1911Grigsby v. Russell, 22 U.S. 149, established life insurance policies as private property, opening up the possibility for policies to be bought, sold, and traded. This makes it just like any other high-value asset, and laid the early groundwork for life settlement options.
1980'sStarting in the late 1980s, life insurance options were largely seen in the form of viatical options, which involve the sale of a policy by a person facing terminal illness. At that time and into the early 90's, most individuals who sold their policies were facing cancer or HIV/Aids. However, by the mid 90's, the range for life insurance options had broadened and were now being considered by people in nearly every type of illness.
2001Increasing investor interest in life insurance options as an alternative investment continued to grow. By 2001, what was once a tiny industry, had started to attract the interest of major financial institutions and banks.
2004Abacus is formed. A group of financial and insurance professionals, who met in the mid-'90s in New York's financial district, came together to create what is now Abacus Life as a way to ensure more people had access to life insurance options.
2009The industry was not immune to the financial crash of 2008. Major banks and financial institutions pulled back from any non-core investing, which caused the demand for the awareness of options to lessen for a time period.
2010Finding confidence bounded back around 2010, which opened the door for many life insurance buyers to expand operations.
2015U.S. began enacting safeguards, including disclosure requirements, and improved regulations to ensure the safety and legitimacy of life insurance options.