For Consumers

Kreidler orders unlicensed Seattle-area adjuster to cease work, pay $5,000 fine

Contact Public Affairs: 360-725-7055

July 13, 2016

OLYMPIA, Wash. – Insurance Commissioner Mike Kreidler issued fines in June totaling $33,550 against insurance companies, agents and brokers who violated state insurance regulations.

For more information, search the order number on the Commissioner’s website.

Rob Marinelli and Insurance Appraisal Services, Bellevue; ordered to cease and desist and fined $5,000, order 16-0155
Marinelli owns the IAS office in the Seattle area and has prepared automobile damage estimates since 1995 without a license. In 2014 and 2015, Marinelli completed some 2,500 damage estimates for consumers. IAS has three offices in Washington state, none of which employ licensed adjusters. State insurance laws require adjusters to be licensed by the Insurance Commissioner. Marinelli and IAS are ordered to cease and desist from operating as adjusters until they are licensed by the Insurance Commissioner.

LifeMap Assurance Co., Portland; fined $1,500, order 16-0065
LifeMap reported to the Insurance Commissioner that it was delayed in paying dental claims because of a dramatic increase in business and claims. It contracted with a claims administrator to help process the claims, which brought processing times down from an average of nearly 60 days to seven days. State law requires health insurance companies to process 95 percent of its claims within 60 days. LifeMap paid more than $8,200 in interest to dental providers for 1,413 claims that were delayed more than 60 days, as required by state rules. The company agreed to pay a fine for violating state insurance laws and rules.

Amerigroup Washington Inc., Seattle; fined $2,100, order 16-0087
Amerigroup allowed six insurance producers whose appointments had lapsed to conduct 30 transactions totaling more than $3,300. State law requires insurers to file a notice and pay a fee to the Insurance Commissioner for each licensed producer who will act as an agent of an insurer.

Crestbrook Insurance Co., Columbus, Ohio; fined $4,500, order 16-0091
Crestbrook allowed 26 insurance producers whose appointments had lapsed to conduct 189 transactions totaling more than $170,000. State law requires insurers to file a notice and pay a fee to the Insurance Commissioner for each licensed producer who will act as an agent of an insurer.

Platte River Insurance Co., Omaha; fined $1,500, order 16-0121
Platte River allowed 20 insurance producers whose appointments had lapsed to conduct 75 transactions totaling more than $58,000. State law requires insurers to file a notice and pay a fee to the Insurance Commissioner for each licensed producer who will act as an agent of an insurer.

Sterling Life Insurance Co., Chicago; fined $2,000, order 16-0116
Sterling allowed 12 insurance producers whose appointments had lapsed to conduct 28 transactions totaling more than $2,300. State law requires insurers to file a notice and pay a fee to the Insurance Commissioner for each licensed producer who will act as an agent of an insurer.

Danielle Bretti, Delray, Fla.; fined $250, order 16-0086
Bretti renewed her nonresident insurance producer license in December 2015 and her license payment was rejected. Bretti did not respond to repeated attempts by the Insurance Commissioner to contact her, so her producer license was revoked in March 2016. Days before the revocation was to take effect, Bretti contact the Insurance Commissioner. She agreed to pay the licensing fee and pay a fine.

Kenneth J. Johnson, Lakewood; fined $250, order 16-0128
Johnson applied for an insurance producer license in May 2016, but failed to disclose a 2006 felony conviction, a violation of state insurance law. The conviction was revealed during a background check.

Jerry W. Zelinsky, Renton; fined $250, order 16-0132
Zelinksy added an unauthorized person to a consumer’s auto insurance policy without the policyholder’s knowledge or consent. The unauthorized person later filed a $10,000 claim on the policy without the policyholder’s knowledge. The consumer’s daughter filed a complaint with the Insurance Commissioner, which asked the insurer, Farmers, to remove the unauthorized person from the policy, refund the additional resulting premiums totaling $502 and remove the $10,000 claim from his claims history.

Advanced Education Systems LLC, Hunt Valley, Maryland; fined $200, order 16-0125
Advanced Education Systems provides continuing education for licensed insurance producers. From May through December 2015, it filed course attendee rosters to the Insurance Commissioner later than allowed by state insurance law.

Temika Nicole Brown, Katy, Texas; fined $500, order 16-0078
Brown applied for an independent adjuster’s license in October 2015. Her payment for the licensing fee was rejected. Brown did not respond to repeated attempts by the Insurance Commissioner to contact her, so her license application was revoked in January 2016. In February 2016, Brown sought to have the revocation rescinded. She agreed to pay the licensing fee and a fine.

PNEC Corp., Tacoma; fined $15,000, order 15-0259
PNEC was registered to sell heating oil tank service contracts, which cover damage to home heating oil tanks. In 2013, PNEC sold most of its assets to Pettit Oil Co., including 1,430 service contracts. PNEC did not notify its customers of the sale or new claims procedures, and it also failed to notify the Insurance Commissioner of the sale. Pettit Oil went out of business in 2014, leaving those consumers with fuel tank service contracts without effective means to make a claim. PNEC agreed to notify its former customers and allow them to make claims, which PNEC will pay if valid.

Frances Rivera, Little Elm, Texas; fined $250, order 16-0137
Rivera applied for an independent adjuster’s license in September 2015. Her payment for the licensing fee was rejected and she did not respond to repeated attempts by the Insurance Commissioner to contact her. Her license application was revoked in January 2016. In May 2016, Rivera sought to have the revocation rescinded. She agreed to pay the licensing fee and a fine.

Kelvin Smith, Dallas; fined $250, order 16-0130
Smith applied for an independent adjuster’s license in November 2015. The payment for the licensing fee was rejected. Smith did not respond to repeated attempts by the Insurance Commissioner to contact him, so his license application was revoked in March 2016. Days before the revocation was to take effect, Smith sought to have the revocation rescinded. He agreed to pay the licensing fee and a fine.

About the Office

Kreidler’s office oversees Washington’s insurance industry to ensure that companies, agents and brokers follow state laws. Since 2001, Kreidler's office has assessed $20.4 million in fines, which are deposited in the state's general fund to pay for other state services.

The Office of the Insurance Commissioner posts disciplinary orders against companies, agents and brokers. Consumers can also look up complaints against insurance companies.

For an insurance question or complaint, contact the Insurance Commissioner’s consumer advocates online or by phone at 800-562-6900.

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