Holocaust-Era Insurance | Holocaust Memorial Resource and Education Center of Central Florida

"Holocaust-era Insurance" is a presentation currently running until February 24, 2010 at the Holocaust Memorial Resource and Education Center of Central Florida (851 North Maitland Avenue, Maitland, FL 32794). More info: 407-628-0555

About: In Europe in the 1930s life insurance policies were a popular form of investment. Money set aside in insurance policies could provide for the family if the wage earner died, and sheltered the family’s assets so they would be available for future generations.

Unfortunately, after the Holocaust European Jewish policyholders and their survivors and beneficiaries were often unable to collect on policies they held. Nazis confiscated many of the policies and had the benefits paid to their own government accounts. Some policies were cancelled because the policyholder – sent to a camp and likely killed – was not paying the premium. Some policies were never paid because the paperwork was lost, or surviving beneficiaries were difficult to locate, or because there was no death certificate to prove loss of life.

Until the late 1980s families were by and large unsuccessful in collecting on life insurance policies written before the war. Florida was one of just a handful of states that set up their own commissions to help policyholders make long-delayed claims against European insurers. This exhibit provides an in-depth review of what happened and why – and how our state has helped families in their quest for justice.

The Holocaust Memorial Resource and Education Center of Central Florida is a not-for-profit, interfaith, interdenominational organization. Its mission is to provide educational and cultural experiences - to examine the past in order to learn from it and to help people become aware of and alert to present dangers to our freedoms, our human rights and our lives by learning the lessons of the Holocaust.