Texas’ Underwriters MGA Wages Fight Against GE Re

November 3, 2003

Texas-based Underwriters MGA (UMGA), a Texas- based corporation with offices in Hidalgo County, announced it has filed a court petition to reclaim millions of dollars in revenues the company said it lost as a result of actions taken against it by General Electric Reinsurance Corporation.

In a written statement, the company said it filed a second amended petition in the 370th Judicial District Court of Hidalgo County, asserting that beginning in October 2000 General Electric “pulled the plug” and refused to provide reinsurance it had promised to UMGA. According to UMGA, as a result of GE’s actions both UMGA and its Hispanic policyholders were injured when GE wrongfully withheld payment for their auto insurance claims. The lawsuit alleges that these actions were discriminatory and UMGA and its Hispanic customers have been subjected to discrimination.

In the lawsuit, UMGA’s attorney Raymond L. Thomas asserted, “General Electric Reinsurance has gone to great lengths to undermine UMGA’s business in Texas by undertaking a vindictive and malicious campaign of harassment and interference in their business, followed by retaliation. State National and State & County Insurance are engaged in a GE orchestrated plan to act in collusion against UMGA and its Hispanic customers.”

He added: “Targeting a Hispanic company and unnecessarily delaying payments to its policyholders is unfair, illegal and discriminatory.”

In a separate motion, UMGA alleges that GE Reinsurance enlisted its agent and representative, State National Insurance Company and State & County Mutual Fire Insurance Company, to act on its behalf by filing lawsuits against UMGA, causing further damage to UMGA and its Hispanic clients. Reportedly, efforts by State National Insurance Company and State & County Insurance appear to be intended to delay the case and force UMGA to incur significant legal expenses.

Ramon A. Villarreal, president and CEO of UMGA, stated, “GE Reinsurance, a corporate giant, has irreparably harmed my company by its actions. It feels as though General Electric acted against my company because I am an Hispanic American and many of my policyholders are Hispanic.

“We are a small company but we are a proud company. We will fight General Electric, as well as State National and State & County Insurance, until we prevail in court on behalf of our company and our policyholders.”

The case is scheduled to go to trial in Hidalgo County, Texas, in August 2004.

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