Washington Insurance Commissioner Fines Insurance Producers

April 10, 2014

Washington Insurance Commissioner Mike Kreidler issued fines totaling $23,050 against insurance companies, agents and brokers who violated state insurance regulations. The disciplinary actions and fines were levied from Feb. 10 through March 10.

Following are the commissioner’s findings, and the names of the insurance parties involved, which are linked to the disciplinary order that contains more information about each action.

Insurance Companies

American Reliable Insurance Co.; Scottsdale, Ariz.. The company issued polices using outdated rate schedules; an examination determined more than half of the company’s policies were issued using the wrong rate. Other policies had different errors, including incorrect policy codes or other factors. Once the company became aware of these errors, it took action quickly and proactively; three policyholders who were overcharged were reimbursed with interest.

Washington Insurance Commissioner Mike Kreidler
Washington Insurance Commissioner Mike Kreidler

Fine: $30,000 ($10,000 for each violation) with $20,000 suspended as long as the company pays the fine within 30 days and commits no additional violations for two years.

Imperium Insurance Co.; Houston, Texas. An examination found 20 polices that Imperium issued using incorrect rates, caused by a rounding error in a computer system. Examiners also found 211 travel policies totaling $37,782 that were issued by an unlicensed agent.

Fine: $10,000.

Insurance Finance Corp.; West Des Moines, Iowa. Insurance Finance Corp. is not licensed to sell insurance products in Washington. Examiners were able to determine IFC sold premium finance agreements—essentially, a loan to help commercial customers pay their annual insurance premiums — to 429 consumers totaling more than $630,000 in loans. IFC also charged customers higher service charges than state law allows, at $10 per year plus a one-time $10 acquisition charge per finance agreement.

Disciplinary action: The commissioner issued an order for IFC to cease and desist selling insurance products in Washington state.

Agents and Brokers

Sammy L. McKamie; Southlake, Texas. McKamie is licensed to sell life, disability, and property/casualty insurance in Washington. A consumer reported receiving an unsolicited quote from McKamie in August 2013 for commercial property insurance; in all, he sent unsolicited quotes to four Washington consumers for insurance he is not licensed to sell.

Fine: $1,000.

Daniel Robson; Austin, Texas. Robson failed to notify the commissioner that he moved and failed to respond to inquiries when it was time to renew his license. State law authorized the Insurance Commissioner to revoke his license, and Robson later requested that his license be reinstated.

Disciplinary action: The commissioner rescinds the license revocation

Fine: $500

William E. Saylor; Lakewood, Wash.. The commissioner placed Saylor’s license on probation after he wrote 13 false renter insurance policies and paid the premiums in order to meet a sales quota. He has no disciplinary history with the commissioner.

Disciplinary action: His license is on probation for five years.

Fine: $1,000

Charles S. Stewart, Spokane, Wash.. Stewart failed to pay his license renewal in 2013. After multiple attempts to obtain payment, the Insurance Commissioner revoked his license in December 2013. Stewart now wishes to reactivate his license.

Disciplinary action: The commissioner rescinds the license revocation

Fine: $550

Kent L. Erickson; Mount Vernon, Wash.. Erickson’s license expired on Dec. 1, 2013. He was fined $2,000 in May 2013 for not paying clients’ premiums and not managing premium payments in accordance with state law; he agreed to comply with state law or lose his license. He committed the same violation again in November 2013. Erickson has not responded to the commissioner’s inquiries about the November 2013 violations, which include improperly withholding, misappropriating, or converting any money or properties received in the course of doing insurance business; or using fraudulent, coercive, or dishonest practices, or demonstrating incompetence, untrustworthiness, or financial irresponsibility in this state or elsewhere.

Disciplinary action: The commissioner is not renewing the license.

Brandalyn D. Jeter; Spokane, Wash.. Jeter applied for an insurance producer’s license in December 2013. She disclosed two felony convictions from 2002 and 2005, and a debt to the court that she is repaying.

Disciplinary action: In accordance with state law, Jeter will have a probationary license for five years or until her court debt is paid, whichever is later, as long as she complies with the terms of the license.

John Leroy Milne; Phoenix, Ariz.. The state of Arizona revoked Milne’s license to sell insurance for misappropriating funds from 81 policies. Washington was notified of the revocation by the National Association of Insurance Producers (NIPR), the national database for licensed insurance producers.

Disciplinary action: The commissioner revokes the license.

From 2001 through 2013, Kreidler’s office has issued more than $14 million in fines. Fines are deposited in the state’s general fund to pay for other state services.

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