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Inicio del Departamento | Inicio de Agentes y Agencias | Inicio de Insurance Insights

  Vol. 8, No. 1 - January 2019

Notas de Casos



Case: The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) barred a life and health agent because of the sale of annuities to a senior consumer. Analysis of documentation indicated the agent falsified replacement forms by answering "no" on the application and on the agent attestation form when completing the paperwork to surrender an existing contact to fund the new purchase.

The agent continued the misrepresentation of the facts of the sale by indicating the source of the money to fund the new annuity was the consumer's money market account rather than the existing annuity.

The senior consumer incurred surrender charges of $82,523 and a $128,164 taxable gain as the exchange was not done appropriately as a 1035 tax - free exchange. The agent was paid more than $60,000 in commissions. The consumer was "made whole" by the agent's broker-dealer firm and he was required to disgorge all commissions.

Disposition: Suspended one year.


Case: An investigation into the activities of a bail bond agent was initiated after a surety company alleged the agent failed to remit more than $12,000 in premiums for unreported bail bonds and forfeited a $10,000 bond. The agent secured another appointment with a different surety company and swore under oath she owed no premium to any other surety company.

During the investigation, investigators found the agent closed her agency location without notifying the Department and was conducting business from her home. The residence did not display any type of sign as required to designate the agency's existence and allow consumers to locate it. Investigators determined the agent had no business bank account, was transacting business in cash only and was using money orders to forward the premium funds to the surety company.

Disposition: License revoked.


Case: A life and health agent lost his insurance company appointments as a result of continuing education (CE) non-compliance. The agent was designated as the agent in charge of his insurance agency. Florida law requires an agency to maintain a designated agent in charge. This case emphasizes the importance of regularly reviewing email correspondence sent from the Department and maintaining accurate email addresses in your Mi Perfil account.

When the agent lost his appointments, an automated notification process began to notify the agency to designate a new agent in charge within 60 days or the agency's license would be cancelled. Multiple notices were emailed by Agent Licensing to the agency instructing it to update the designated agent in charge through the agency's MyProfile account.

The agent brought his CE into compliance but failed to designate himself or another qualified agent as the agent in charge of the agency and the agency license was cancelled.

Department investigators found the agent was operating the agency and insurance was being transacted without an agency license in force.

Disposition: Fined $2,500.


Case: The Department received a complaint from an insurer stating a life and health agent emailed a copy of the company’s annual Medicare training test answers to other sales agents.

The agent admitted to investigators he saved the test answers and distributed them to other sales agents. The agent said he scored 100% on the exam and wanted to provide "training" to fellow agents by disclosing the contents of the exam. He felt because he paid for the exam, the test and answers belonged to him, which is not true.

Disposition: Fined $2,700 and placed on probation for one year.



Case: An investigation was opened to look into the fiduciary activities of an agent after receiving a complaint form a premium finance company. The owner of the agency, a general lines agent and the agent in charge, refused to provide copies of policy declaration pages to document 42 premium finance agreements he and his agency submitted. In addition, the premium finance company never received the unearned premium from the issuing insurance companies, managing general agent or the agency.

Investigators obtained copies of the premium finance contracts, payment drafts, the payment history for each account, ten (10) day intent to cancel notices and cancellation notices for transactions in question from the premium finance company. The outstanding amount due to the premium finance company was in excess of $300,000.

Investigators attempted to conduct an agency inspection but the owner/agent in charged refused to cooperate with the Department�s investigators by providing the records as required by Florida Statutes.

Analysis of the agency's bank records was conducted which revealed all 42 premium drafts where deposited into the agency's bank account. The premium finance company sued the agency and obtained an Order of Default Final Judgment for $300,000.

All 42 premium finance agreements indicated the policies were issued through Lloyds of London, but the company advised investigators none of the 42 policies had been issued. Lloyds confirmed neither the agent or his agency had the authority to act on their company.

Disposition: Both the agent and the agency licenses were revoked. The agent was later arrested by the Department's Division of Investigative and Forensic Services, Bureau of Insurance Fraud and charged with 38 felony counts of forgery, uttering a forged instrument, grand theft and diversion of insurance funds.


Case: A complaint was received from the Department's Division of Funeral, Cemetery and Consumer Services alleging a life agent was allowing unlicensed persons to sell life insurance policies within funeral homes on his behalf.

Investigators obtained consumer affidavits, conducted agency staff interviews and obtained insurance company documentation to establish the agent routinely recruited unlicensed individuals to sell "pre-need" life insurance policies. To facilitate the scheme, the agent provided a stack of life insurance applications to staff at the funeral home. The unlicensed staff members explained the policy's benefits and cost and obtained the unsuspecting consumers' signatures on applications. The agent then signed the applications and falsely attested that the insureds had signed the applications in his presence.

Disposition: Administrative license surrender.

 

 

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