European Life Settlement Association (ELSA)

What Is the European Life Settlement Association?

The European Life Settlement Association (ELSA) promotes fair standards for the European life settlement industry. Its ultimate goal is the promotion and marketing of the life settlement industry across the European continent. 

Understanding ELSA

The European Life Settlement Association (ELSA) is a membership organization providing its members with many benefits including access to proprietary research and white papers, plus attendance at its annual symposium. A life settlement transpires when a life insurance policyholder sells the value of the policy to a third party.

ELSA gathers and provides market data to commercial and retail investors with the goal of raising awareness of the life settlement industry throughout Europe. ELSA members are expected to conform to a best practices code of conduct written by ELSA as part of an overall strategy to advance the reputation of the life settlement industry in Europe.

ELSA utilizes a committee structure to engage its members in a variety of development projects intended to sustain and advance the life settlement industry for decades to come. ELSA members attend conferences around the globe to stay current with changes within the industry.

ELSA was founded in 2009, and brings together European funding sources and service providers eager to promote transparency through the availability of shared and accurate industry research and information. This information can be of particular value to regulators and the media.

Another key role of ELSA and other European trade associations is to introduce new products being created in the United States to European clients. This function became particularly controversial in the aftermath of the 2008 global financial crisis, when many investors lost faith in financial institutions and regulators. Restoring and maintaining their confidence is a key purpose of ELSA and other trade associations.

In 2017, Scott Willkomm, CEO of Life Equity was appointed the new Chair of the ELSA Board of Officers.

Benefits of Membership in the ELSA

In addition to adhering to the Code of Ethics, networking with colleagues and attending conferences, members benefit from ELSA’s stature as a thought-leader within the life settlement industry. For example, ELSA members are frequent presenters at conferences, often developing content made possible through ELSA research. Access to ELSA case studies and industry research is a key benefit of membership.

What is Life Settlement?

Life insurance settlements can be thought of as a secondary market for life insurance policies. They occur when a person in good health no longer needs to be covered so the value of the policy is sold to a third-party. An example of this is seen in large corporations where key members of the management team may be insured but are no longer with the firm. The company may choose to sell the value of the policy to a third party.

Article Sources
Investopedia requires writers to use primary sources to support their work. These include white papers, government data, original reporting, and interviews with industry experts. We also reference original research from other reputable publishers where appropriate. You can learn more about the standards we follow in producing accurate, unbiased content in our editorial policy.
  1. European Life Settlement Association. "What is ELSA?" Accessed Apr. 20, 2021.

  2. European Life Settlement Association. "Members." Accessed Apr. 20, 2021.

  3. European Life Settlement Association. "ELSA Represents European Funding Sources, Service Providers and Intermediaries in the Life Settlement Market." Accessed Apr. 20, 2021.

  4. European Life Settlement Association. "Executive." Accessed Apr. 20, 2021.