August 20, 2015

Public Hearing: Minnesota Department of Commerce - Long-Term Care - Rate Increases and Policyholder Protections

In late August, 2015, the Minnesota Department of Commerce convened a hearing to assist the Department’s fact-finding effort on long-term care insurance industry issues. The hearing provided consumers, insurance companies, and other interested parties the opportunity to share statements or testimony about the state of the long-term care insurance industry including issues related to rate...

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July 30, 2015

It seems like every time you turn around, insurers are peddling a new type of super-complicated annuity whose internal levers and formulae make it virtually impossible that the buyer will collect the promised benefits in their lifetime: Equity-indexed annuities, Medically Underwritten Annuities, Contingent Deferred Annuities...the list goes on. And it's a darn shame. There can truly be value for a consumer to purchase an annuity...

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July 29, 2015

If you follow UP's work, you know that the relationships we build with public officials in disaster areas are an essential part of how our small staff serves so many consumers far from our base in San Francisco.  El Paso (Colorado) County Commissioner Sallie Clark is one such official.  When the Pikes Peak Region she serves as a County Commissioner was devastated in a series of wildfires and floods, Sallie researched United Policyholders' credentials and accepted our offer to bring our Roadmap to Recovery program in to help her constituents.  Her early recognition of the...

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July 16, 2015

With surprising (and sad) frequency, United Policyholders hears from senior citizen victims of unfair insurance practices.

And as hard as it is for me to understand businesses and people that intentionally take advantage of the elderly - let alone those who lose their homes in disasters...its a common occurrence. That's why Americans should feel fortunate that we have a civil justice system that can deliver remedies in these types of situations. And that is why the contingency fee system is so critically important to consumers - especially low income seniors.  

The...

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June 23, 2015

Why would flood insurance adjusters underpay claims when they get paid a percentage of settlement amounts?  Doesn't that give them an economic incentive to pay higher settlements to increase the fee they earn?  These questions come up after every flood disaster.  These questions have been on many people's minds since the Sandy engineering scandal broke.

The simple answers are:  No, because they make more money by what's known in the biz as "running and gunning" (closing the file and moving on to the next one). And, because of the unwritten industry rule that...

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