Nests of the
A map to some of the locations where the insurance
bloodsuckers hang around!
Sightings from The Catbird Seat
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The Catbird accepts no responsibility for the accuracy of any information that may appear in any of these sites. Just because YOUR insurance company MAY NOT APPEAR on this list, does NOT mean that your company is VAMPIRE FREE!
You must check them out for yourselves!
When checking out your insurance company, don’t forget to take along some garlic, a crucifix, some holy water, and a big, sharp wooden stake!
AND NEVER GO THERE ALONE AT NIGHT!
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Photo of what you may expect to find in a vampire nest…
THE VAMPIRE BAT INSUREM PHYLLOSTOMIDAE
So, if you’re completely prepared, sneak to the caves below
to see some of those nests where the hairy-legged
VAMPIRE BATS allegedly have been sighted...
November 30, 2006
Insurers Told to Stop Contingent Payouts
By MICHAEL GORMLEY, AP, Forbes
The attorneys general for three states have told four major insurance companies that they must end special commissions to agents and brokers as agreed in an earlier settlement.
The announcement Thursday involved ACE Group Holdings Inc. of Bermuda; American International Group Inc. of New York; The St. Paul Travelers Companies Inc. of St. Paul, Minn.; and Zurich American Insurance Co. Inc., a subsidiary of Swiss insurance giant Zurich Financial Services.
The four companies reached an agreement a year ago as part of a bid-rigging investigation. That deal requires the companies to end contingent commissions – which are special payments above regular commissions – when 65 percent of an insurance line is sold by companies that don’t pay the commissions….
New York Attorney General Eliot Spitzer made the announcement with his partners in the case, Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal and Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan.
The companies must end the commissions Jan. 1, as they already have for excess casualty insurance, Spitzer’s office said.
The settlement came as part of a multiyear investigation into bid-rigging and price fixing in the sale of corporate property and casualty insurance. Spitzer argued that the contingent commissions, paid to brokers and agents to steer business to the companies, were the equivalent of kickbacks. This, he said, unfairly raised the price to insurance clients….
In January, Marsh & McLennan Companies Inc., the nation’s largest insurance brokerage, agreed to pay $850 million in restitution to end Spitzer’s investigation into bid rigging and price fixing. The settlement became a model for other insurance company settlements.
Marsh & McLennan also agreed to stop the practice of contingent commissions.
In September, eight former executives of Marsh & McLennan Companies Inc. were charged with colluding with brokers and executives at major insurance companies to arrange noncompetitive bids for corporate customers of Marsh & McLennan, the nation’s largest brokerage, based in New York.
The indictments alleged bid rigging from November 1998 to September 2004 with executives at AIG, ACE USA, Zurich American and other insurance companies.
A number of executives have entered guilty pleas to criminal charges stemming from the investigation; cases against others are pending.
Insurance Broker Liability
From Mealey’s Litigation Report
Volume 1, Issue #1 · March 2005
Redwood Oil Co.
Redwood Oil Co. filed a class action Jan. 21 in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois against several brokers and numerous insurers, alleging that they wrongfully conspired in a bid-rigging and price-fixing scheme to increase their profits at the expense of their clients (Redwood Oil Co. v. Marsh & McLennan Companies Inc., et al., No. 050-0390, N.D. Ill.)….
Redwood named Marsh & McLennan Cos. Inc., Marsh Inc., Aon Corp., Aon Brokers Services Inc., Aon Risk Services Inc., Aon Group Inc., Aon Services Group Inc., Willis Group Holdings Ltd., Willis North America Inc., Universal Life Resources Inc., Benefits Commerce, Douglas P. Cox, Arthur J. Gallagher & Co., ACE Ltd., ACE INA Holdings Inc., ACE INA, ACE USA, American International Group Inc., Hartford Financial Services Group Inc., Munich American Risk Partners Inc., America Re-Insurance Co., Munich Re-Insurance Co., MetLife Inc., UnumProvident Corp., St. Paul Travelers Cos. Inc., Zurich American Insurance Co., Zurich North America and National Financial Partners Corp. (the Marsh defendants).
Redwood alleges that the brokers conspired in a contingent commission scheme. Redwood says the brokers represented themselves as independent firms whose goal was to find the best available insurance at the lowest available price for their clients. Many of the brokers specifically stated to clients that they did not receive compensation of any kind from insurers with whom they did business, Redwood says.
According to Redwood, the brokers abused the trust it and other clients had in them by steering business to insurance companies that paid the biggest commissions to Marsh rather than insurers that provided the lowest quotes. Redwood says the brokers, working together, steered business away from insurers who refused to pay contingent commissions.
Redwood alleges that this collusion among the brokers and insurers artificially inflated insurance prices and allowed them to reap profits they would not have been able to earn in a free and fair market.
Redwood says the Marsh defendants violated the Sherman Act by artificially restraining price competition in the market for insurance products, raising prices to an artificial level and stabilizing them there and depriving clients of the benefit of free and open competition.
The defendants violated the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act by conspiring together in an unlawful scheme to obtain money and using the U.S. Postal Service to disseminate materials in pursuit of that scheme, the plaintiff asserts. The Marsh defendants’ conspiracy violated state antitrust laws by restraining free trade, and their actions constituted unfair competition and deceptive trade practices as defined by statute in several states, plaintiff alleges.
Redwood seeks an injunction against the Marsh defendants’ unlawful actions, treble damages and disgorgement of profits.
Lawrence W. Schad, James Shedden, Michael S. Hilicki and Tony H. Kim of Beeler, Schad & Diamond in Chicago; W. Timothy Needham of Janssen, Malloy, Needham, Morrison, Reinholtsen & Crowley of Eureka, Calif.; Francis O. Scarpulla of San Francisco; Josef D. Cooper of Cooper & Kirkham in San Francisco; Michael P. Lehmann of The Furth Firm in San Francisco; and Steven J. Greenfogel of Meredith, Cohen, Greenfogel & Skirnick in Philadelphia filed the complaint.
# # #
MORE BLOODSUCKERS TO COME
MEANWHILE, YOU CAN STAKE OUT THESE NESTS
ACE UP THE SLEEVE
AIG: THE UN-AMERICAN INSURANCE GROUP
ALLIED WORLD ASSURANCE
AMERICAN SAVINGS BANK: BEHIND THE BLINDS
THE POOP ON AON
THE BAD FAITH BUZZARDS
THE BANKRUPTCY BUZZARDS
THE BERMUDA FRAUDS
THE CHUBB GROUP
CITIGROUP: VAMPIRES IN THE CITY
CONFESSIONS OF A WHISTLEBLOWER
A CONNECTICUT YANKEE IN KING KAMEHAMEHA’S COURT
CONSECO: WHERE DID THE MONEY GO?
DIRTY GOLD IN GOLDMAN SACHS
DIRTY MONEY, DIRTY POLITICS & BISHOP ESTATE
THE EAGLE HOODED: THE 9-11 COVERUP CONTINUES
FIRST INSURANCE COMPANY OF HAWAII
THE GREAT NEST EGG ROBBERIES
HAWAIIAN INSURANCE COMPANIES
THE KAMEHAMEHA SCHOOLS PENSION PLAN
KEMPER INSURANCE COMPANIES
MARSH & McLENNAN: THE MARSH BIRDS
MARSH & McLENNAN’S MARSH AFFINITY SERVICES
THE PRUDENTIAL: A NEST ON SHAKY GROUND
RICO IN PARADISE
THE SILENCE OF THE WHISTLEBLOWERS
SONGS OF THE WHISTLER
THE ROYAL & SUNAMERICA
THE TITLE INSURANCE VULTURES
TRANSYLVANIA TRAVELERS IN ST. PAUL
VAMPIRES IN THE CITY
VAMPIRES IN THE VESTA INSURANCE GROUP
VULTURES IN THE MEADOWS
WHAT PRICE WATERHOUSE?
WILLIAM SIMON SAYS…
THE WILLIS GROUP
YAKUZA DOODLE DANDIES
ZEPHYR INSURANCE COMPANY
ZEROING IN ON ZURICH FINANCIAL SERVICES
MORE OF THE CATBIRD’S FAVORITE LINKS
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Last Update November 30, 2006, by The Catbird