Unlicensed Auto Insurance Robo-Caller Fined $191K by Minnesota Regulators

July 16, 2014

An unlicensed commercial entity has been ordered by Minnesota commerce regulators to pay $191,185 in civil penalties for making numerous fraudulent and unlicensed auto insurance solicitations to consumers in that state.

The Minnesota Department of Commerce imposed the fine on Variable Marketing, a Texas LLC, which does business under the name Instant Insurance Marketing.

The commerce department said Variable Marketing is not licensed to sell insurance in the state, nor is the company registered to do business in Minnesota.

Variable Marketing acts a “lead generator” utilizing automatic dialing announcing devices (robo-calls) to connect consumers with a call center, which then connects the consumer to an insurance agent licensed in the consumer’s state, the department said.

It is alleged that Variable Marketing robo-called 38,237 Minnesota residents in an attempt to sell insurance.

Regulators also assert that in addition to engaging in unlicensed activity, the communications to Minnesota consumers regarding the insurance policies were false and misleading because the company represented themselves as acting on behalf of a government agency.

Source: Minnesota Department of Commerce

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