Insurer, Agent Told to Stop Selling Unauthorized Insurance in La.

November 22, 2006

Louisiana Commissioner of Insurance Jim Donelon reported that his office obtained an order from the 19th Judicial District Court in Baton Rouge to stop the alleged sale of unauthorized commercial insurance by United Assurance Company Ltd. its agent, AA Communications Inc., and its employees James E. Zoucha, Cong Li and Gwen Moyo.

United Assurance and AA Communications, with offices in Baton Rouge and New Orleans, were investigated by Donelon pursuant to a complaint filed with the Department of Insurance for the sale of a performance bond, a payment bond and a bid bond to a Louisiana construction company.

The Department of Insurance investigation revealed that United Assurance, through its agent, AA Communications, sold the insurance products without a license to conduct business in Louisiana as required by the Insurance Code.

The performance and payment bonds were issued on Aug. 23, 2006, both in the amount of $6,630,000 ($13.26 million total). The bid bond was issued on Aug. 3, in the amount of $350,000. The construction company paid premiums on the bonds totaling $321,555. When construction company representatives were told the bonds were rejected because United Assurance was not licensed to do business in Louisiana, those company reps asked for their $321,555 in premiums to be returned. When United Assurance refused, the construction company representatives filed a complaint with the Commissioner’s office on Oct. 18 against AA Communications and United Assurance, requesting a full refund of the premium paid for the bonds.

Based on the preliminary evidence submitted by Donelon, the court executed an order authorizing the Department of Insurance to seize all bank accounts, records and any other documents pertaining to the unauthorized sale of insurance in Louisiana. A hearing in the matter is scheduled on Jan. 22, 2007, before Judge Don Johnson.

Donelon requests that any person who may have purchased insurance from United Assurance or through its agent, AA Communications, contact Kathlee Hennigan with the Department of Insurance, at 1-800-259-5300 or in Baton Rouge at 225-342-5900.

Source: LDI

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