COLUMBUS — Ohio Lieutenant Governor and Department of Insurance Director Mary Taylor has traveled to Florida to join several state regulators who, working with the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC), have formed a special task force to help coordinate regulatory investigations involving the claim settlement practices of life insurance companies.
During the past several months, insurance regulators have been investigating a number of large life insurance companies regarding their standard business practices in handling death benefits for life insurance policies. The alleged practices include use of the Social Security Administration’ s Death Master File by insurers for purposes of terminating payments under annuity contracts, but failing to use this same information to facilitate the payment of claims on life insurance policies.
“Ohio supports the NAIC efforts to review the extent of these practices in the life insurance and annuity industry,” Taylor said. “We are actively involved in multi-state examinations and utilizing our resources to achieve a fair resolution that protects Ohio consumers and does not hinder the ability of companies to conduct business in Ohio.”
Members of the newly created task force include California, Florida (chair), Illinois, Iowa, Louisiana, New Hampshire, New Jersey, North Dakota, Pennsylvania and West Virginia.
While in Florida, Taylor is attending public hearings reviewing industry claims settlement practices. The NAIC task force is coordinating with both the Florida Office of Insurance Regulation and the California Department of Insurance to conduct these hearings. The Florida hearing is scheduled for 9:30 a.m. today, Thursday, May 19, 2011. The California hearing is scheduled for 9:30 a.m. on Monday, May 23, 2011.