Friday, February 19, 2010

Beware Health Insurance Scams

I still get faxes, a technology that I'd given up for dead. Mind you, most of these are "blast" faxes, promoting fabulous six-day cruises, or great breaks on group health insurance. (In response to this sentence, we'll now likely get "blast" email comments.)

Surely, I'm not alone, and this recent article from National Underwriter proves that. It quotes extensively from recent comments made by the Coalition Against Insurance Fraud, stating that small businesses, self-employed individuals, and recently-uninsured people are targeted by plans that prove to be ineffective or worthless.

Periods of high unemployment are especially vulnerable times for those in need, making these scams even more reprehensible.

A money quote:

"Typically, the Coalition said, bogus plans promise full health coverage, affordable premiums, and easy signup regardless of preexisting conditions. Victims often must join a fake trade association or union. This ploy, it was explained, reinforces the illusion of affordable and legitimate group health coverage.

The scams pitch consumers with insurance agents, telemarketing, blast faxes, TV ads, emails and even crudely printed signs stapled to telephone poles. Web sites encourage easy online signup and enhance the appearance of legitimacy, the Coalition related."

If any of our clients in New York State have questions about such offers, or, worse yet, feel that they've been victimized, then they are encouraged to contact the New York State Insurance Department as soon as possible.

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