Missourians should exercise caution when supporting an alleged Tennessee-based charitable organization, the Missouri Department of Insurance, Financial Institutions and Professional Registration said in a recent release.
At least three states have issued cease-and-desist orders against the National Foundation of America (NFOA), Franklin, Tenn. for acting as an insurance company. NFOA is allegedly an unauthorized entity marketing an annuity product to consumers by convincing them to replace their existing annuities or cash value life insurance policies for a “tax-deductible installment plan.” NFOA says this plan will produce guaranteed income each year while lowering taxable income by up to 50 percent, according to its Web site.
“Our department is investigating the issues surrounding the business practices of NFOA, and we will take appropriate actions to ensure the protection of Missouri consumers,” said Doug Ommen, director of the Missouri Department of Insurance, Financial Institutions & Professional Registration. “All consumers need to be aware of the potential economic dangers of dealing with this entity.”
Other states’ investigations have revealed that potential victims may be induced to lapse, forfeit, surrender, terminate, borrow on or convert an existing insurance policy or annuity contract value for a replacement policy or contract from NFOA. Typically, legitimate donor or charitable gift annuities/policies transfer or designate some financial benefit to a designated charity, organization or institution.
Missourians should only purchase insurance products from a registered insurance or financial company and a licensed insurance agent or broker. To check the license status of a company or agent, consumers should visit www.insurance.mo.gov and click on “Insurance Company Information” or “Find an agent.” Missourians also may call the Consumer Insurance Hotline at 1-800-726-7390.
Source: Missouri Department of Insurance, Financial Institutions & Professional Registration
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