Insurance Broker to Reimburse Floridians $2.6 Million

July 17, 2007

While denying wrongdoing, Willis Group Holdings Ltd., a national insurance broker, agreed to reimburse $2.6 million to multiple Florida cities and counties, according to state officials.

Florida Chief Financial Officer Alex Sink, Attorney General Bill McCollum, and Insurance Commissioner Kevin McCarty said under the settlement agreement, no formal action will be taken by state agencies.

A joint investigation by the Attorney General’s Antitrust Division and the Department of Financial Services led to allegations that Willis improperly collected undisclosed fees or commissions when it placed various coverages with insurance companies.

Willis brokered multiple insurance contracts in Florida from 1999 through 2004, and clients included more than a dozen public entities in Florida, including economic development councils, city and county governments and school boards.

“Florida’s taxpayers deserve complete disclosure when local governments are conducting financial transactions with insurance brokers,” Sink said.

Under the agreement, Willis also agreed to make full written disclosure of all such commissions in the future and to pay the costs of the investigation. The recovery of $2.6 million in restitution funds is the result of an industry-wide investigation into insurance broker activities

Source: Florida Department of Financial Services

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