The Dormant Assets Act has today received Royal Assent, marking the expansion of the Dormant Assets Scheme*.
This Act expands the current Dormant Assets Scheme to include additional assets – beyond dormant bank and building society accounts – from the insurance and pensions, investment and wealth management and securities sectors. These changes will allow dormant assets from these sectors to be used for social and environmental initiatives.
Reuniting assets with their original owners remains the first priority for all industry sectors. Together with industry sector-specific tracing, verification and reunification efforts, the expanded scheme will continue to provide the added security that consumers will always be able to reclaim the value of their assets, even if they have been transferred into the scheme. The extension of the voluntary scheme will continue to ensure that consumers are never disadvantaged.
Following six years of work to facilitate the inclusion of new assets from the insurance and pensions, investment and wealth management and securities sectors, the Industry Champions welcome the government’s expansion of the Dormant Assets Scheme:
“We warmly welcome this major milestone in the expansion of the Dormant Assets Scheme. We recognise the vital social contribution that our industries can make both by reuniting customers with their assets wherever possible, and harnessing assets that cannot be reunited for social and environmental causes. Over £800 million has already been distributed to charitable and social enterprises to tackle homelessness, increase financial inclusion and improve employment prospects for young people who are subject to disadvantage and discrimination. By working collectively, we can amplify our impact on communities across the UK , and improve the lives of the most vulnerable and disenfranchised in our society.
We look forward to engaging in the spend consultation later this year to provide feedback on how these priorities could be expanded to address social priorities and maximise impact.”
Group Company Secretary, Rio Tinto plc
Group general counsel and company secetary, Aviva
Insurance & Pensions Champion
Director of Banking & Savings, Nationwide Building Society
Banks & Building Societies Champion
Group general counsel, Jupiter Asset Management
Investment & Wealth Management Champion
Kirsty Cooper, Group general counsel and company secretary at Aviva, and the Dormant Asset Scheme's Industry Champion for Insurance and Pensions said:
I am delighted that the legislation has now passed. An expanded dormant assets scheme with new asset classes and greater industry participation should prove to be a powerful force for good - both in enhancing the number of customers who are reunited with their assets and in supporting good causes.
The new asset classes include specific categories of insurance and pensions, investment and wealth management and securities.
Jane Hanson, Chair of the Dormant Assets Expansion Board and Reclaim Fund Ltd, the operator of the Dormant Assets Scheme said:
“I am delighted to have reached this critical milestone in the expansion of the Dormant Assets Scheme. Royal Assent is an exciting step towards bringing the expanded scheme to life and unlocking new money for charitable and social enterprises across the four nations of the UK. I would like to thank the industry champions, regulators, and many others for their drive, enthusiasm and collective efforts to support government to develop and deliver this legislation.”
Aviva | Daniel Skipp | email@example.com | 07385404972
Reclaim Fund Ltd | Anne-Marie Robinson | 01270 660351 | 07407 832 320 | firstname.lastname@example.org
About Reclaim Fund
Reclaim Fund Ltd (RFL) is a not-for-profit organisation established in 2011 following the enactment of the original Dormant Bank and Building Society Accounts Act 2008. As the operator of the UK Dormant Assets Scheme, RFL’s purpose is to unlock the potential of dormant assets to enhance communities and enrich lives.
To date, RFL has received £1.44bn from over 35 banks and building societies who voluntarily participate and have released £800m to social and environmental initiatives across the UK, whilst reserving 40% in order to safeguard the rights of the original owners to reclaim the value of their asset at any time. RFL is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. For further information please visit reclaimfund.co.uk.
About The Dormant Assets Scheme
The original Dormant Bank and Building Society Accounts Act 2008 allows banks and building societies to transfer money from dormant accounts to Reclaim Fund Ltd (RFL), the Scheme’s operator. RFL holds sufficient reserves to meet potential future reclaims and distributes a suitable surplus to The National Lottery Community Fund which is then apportioned to the four nations of the UK funding social and environmental initiatives.
Following the 2019 report setting out an industry blueprint for expansion across the banking, insurance and pensions, securities, and investment and wealth management sectors, and a public consultation to gather a wider set of views on the proposed approach, primary legislation was introduced in May 2021 to expand the Scheme.
Steve Allen, Group company secretary, Rio Tinto plc – Securities Champion
Kirsty Cooper, Group general counsel and company secretary at Aviva - Insurance & Pensions Champion
Tom Riley, Director of Savings at Nationwide Building Society - Banks & Building Societies Champion
Jasveer Singh, Group general counsel, Jupiter Asset Management - Investment & Wealth Management Champion
Chair of the Dormant Assets Expansion Board:
Jane Hanson, Chair of Dormant Assets Expansion Board & Reclaim Fund Ltd
The scheme’s three core principles:
- Reunification first: participants’ priority is to reunite owners with their assets;
- Full restitution: owners are able, at any point, to reclaim the amount that would have been due to them had a transfer into the Scheme not occurred; and
- Voluntary participation: participation in the Scheme is voluntary to any eligible entity.
English organisations in receipt of dormant asset funding to date include Big Society Capital, Access – the Foundation for Social Investment, Youth Futures Foundation and Fair4All Finance.
For more information, please visit:
Notes to editors:
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