Connecticut Regulator Advises Consumers: Don’t Be Fooled by Misleading Ads

July 31, 2013

The Connecticut Insurance Department on Tuesday issued an announcement urging consumers to be aware of unlicensed businesses promoting on television or other media platforms what is purported to be health insurance connected to either federal health care reform and/or the state-sponsored exchange.

“Access Health CT is the only entity in the state receiving federal tax benefits for individuals and small employers and where eligible consumers can receive federal subsidies to help purchase insurance,” according to the insurance department’s announcement.

The department said it will aggressively enforce the state’s Unfair Insurance Practices laws against those seeking to mislead or confuse the public with products, designs or logos intended to look like Access Health CT.

The department said it received “a handful of complaints” where the names used on a web address or the domain could be misleading. One such instance was dealt with directly by Connecticut’s health insurance exchange, with the insurance department’s support, a department spokesperson told Insurance Journal.

In that specific instance, an unaffiliated broker represented himself to the public as the Connecticut Health Exchange, LLC, according to the department. The broker had incorporated with the Secretary of State under that name and maintained a website and supporting materials also with that name. Connecticut’s health insurance exchange sent a cease and desist letter and the website was deactivated shortly thereafter.

There are now approximately 10 weeks remaining until individuals and small businesses in Connecticut can enroll for health insurance at Access Health CT, in the state-sponsored health insurance exchange. The insurance department said it will provide weekly updates to help consumers understand their options and their rights under the new federal law.

The department said consumers with any questions about the legitimacy of a health plan or suspect false advertising can contact the department either online or by phone: 800-203-3447.

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