Calif. Commissioner Serves Cease & Desist on Unauthorized Insurer

June 19, 2003

Insurance Commissioner John Garamendi announced that the California Department of Insurance (CDI) served a Cease and Desist Order on Insurance Company of the Americas (ICA) based in Bradenton, Fla. and Oriskany, N.Y., following an investigation that revealed the company illegally sold workers’ compensation insurance in California.

CDI’s Investigation Division reportedly found that ICA does not hold a certificate of authority in California and is not authorized to transact insurance in the state. ICA is a sister company to Oriska Insurance Company, which was served with a Cease and Desist Order in April for the same offense. CDI is warning all business owners that workers’ compensation coverage with ICA is not in compliance with the California Insurance Code or California Labor Code.

Employers found to have workers’ compensation insurance with ICA, or other companies providing insurance illegally, could face penalties from the Department of Industrial Relations, including fines and criminal charges.

If ICA continues to write insurance in violation of the cease and desist order, the Commissioner has authority to impose a fine of up to $5,000 for each day of infraction.

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