Multi-state agreement aims to expedite benefits to policyholders
HARRISBURG — Genworth is the latest company to reach a multi-state settlement agreement with insurance regulators regarding its use of the Social Security Administration’s Death Master File (DMF), state Insurance Commissioner Michael Consedine announced on Thursday, Jan. 23.
The agreement is a result of a series of multi-state market conduct investigations of the top 40 life insurance companies, representing more than 55 percent of the marketplace. The investigations focused on the inconsistent use of the DMF and timely payment of proceeds to beneficiaries of life insurance policies and annuities, a news release from the Pennsylvania Insurance Department said.
“Companies continue to recognize the importance of reforming their business practices for the benefit of policyholders and beneficiaries across the country,” Consedine said.
The companies impacted under the Genworth settlement include Genworth Life Insurance Company, Genworth Life and Annuity Insurance Company, and Genworth Life Insurance Company of New York. Previous settlements have included New York Life, ING, MassMutual, Nationwide, John Hancock, MetLife and Prudential, state records show.
Under the terms of this settlement, Genworth has agreed to implement a number of business reforms to regularly match its life insurance and annuity policyholders, using the DMF, to quickly identify when someone has died, and to locate and make payments to beneficiaries.
This settlement agreement was reached through the coordinated multi-state examination efforts of several state insurance departments, with Illinois as the lead examiner, along with California, Delaware, Florida, New Hampshire, North Dakota, Pennsylvania and Virginia.
To see a copy of the full settlement agreement, visit www.insurance.pa.gov and click on the “consumer protection” tab. Consumers with insurance questions should call the department’s toll free number at 877-881-6388.