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Volume 2, No. 4 - May 2013

News You Can Use

- Updating you on what's going on

CFO Jeff Atwater Announces Arrest of Three North Florida Roofers for Unlicensed Insurance Activity

Florida Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater announced the arrests of Derek Shawn Kellog, 31, Crawfordville; Corey Jermaine Brownlee, 30, Jacksonville; and Sean McCaslin, 49, Tallahassee; employees of Roofmasters, Inc., for acting as unlicensed public adjusters while soliciting homeowners for roof repairs in the Tallahassee area.
Click here to read the press release >>

CFO Announces Arrest of Escambia County Insurance Agent in Life Insurance Scam

Florida CFO Jeff Atwater announced the arrest of insurance agent Randall Petersen, 47, of Cantonment, on several felony charges including insurance fraud, grand theft and criminal use of personal identification. Investigators contend that Petersen created a fictitious employment company to lure individuals into applying for fraudulent life insurance policies earning him more than $330,000 in bonuses and commissions.
Click here to read the press release >>

Notice of Development of Rulemaking - Temporary Permit to Operate a Bail Bond Agency

The Florida Department of Financial Services, Division of Agent & Agency Services, has filed Notice of Rule Development for Rule 69B-221.155, Florida Administrative Code, relating to temporary permits to operate a bail bond agency upon the death or mental incapacitation of the owner. The notice was filed with the Florida Department of State and officially published in the Florida Administrative Register on May 6, 2013.

Section 648.285(2), F.S., provides that if the owner of a bail bond agency dies or becomes mentally incapacitated, a personal representative or legal guardian may be issued a temporary permit to manage the affairs of the bail bond agency. The application for a temporary permit must be made by the personal representative or legal guardian upon statements and affidavits filed with the Department on forms prescribed and furnished by it.
Click here for the full text of the notice >>

Notice of Development of Rulemaking - Sample Power of Attorney

The Florida Department of Financial Services, Division of Agent & Agency Services, has filed a Notice of Rule Development for Rule 69B-221.075, Florida Administrative Code, relating to the information a sample power of attorney must contain in order to be approved by the Department. The notice was filed with the Florida Department of State and officially published in the Florida Administrative Register on May 6, 2013.

Section 648.43, F.S., requires every insurer engaged in the writing of bail bonds through bail bond agents in the State of Florida to submit and have approved by the Department a sample power of attorney, which will be the only form of power of attorney the insurer will issue to bail bond agents in this State. The proposed rule sets forth the information a sample power of attorney must contain in order to be approved by the Department. The proposed amendment will allow insurance companies to continue using their existing forms as long as the items required for approval are included on the form.
Click here for the full text of the notice >>

Operation S.A.F.E. with Be Scam Smart Workshops

In honor of Older Americans Month in May, Florida Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater launched Operation S.A.F.E., a new initiative to "Stop Adult Financial Exploitation" and turn the tables on fraud artists who target Florida's 4.4 million seniors. As a trusted advisor to your senior clients, you have an opportunity to help in this fight.

CFO Atwater is seeking to combat statistics that estimate at least one in five seniors has been a victim of financial fraud with a series of free workshops for seniors, their families and caregivers designed to teach them how to spot a scam, how scams work, and steps they can take to protect themselves.

"Our seniors contribute greatly to Florida's economy and as a result many have built a nest egg that makes them targets for fraud," said CFO Atwater. "It is my mission to ensure that they can better enjoy their retirement knowing they are armed with information to safeguard their finances."

The workshops, titled Be Scam Smart, are part of CFO Atwater's On Guard for Seniors initiative that he launched last year to educate seniors on specific financial products such as annuities, identity theft, reverse mortgages and long-term care insurance. Operation S.A.F.E. focuses on frauds and scams, such as fake lotteries and repair scams, and how these scams work on the psyche to convince us to take a chance on something we know or should know is too good to be true.

Initial workshops were held this month in Cape Coral, Venice, Delray Beach, Clearwater, the Villages and Miami with other locations to be scheduled throughout the year.

The Operation S.A.F.E. workshops are provided by the Department of Financial Services, which CFO Atwater oversees, and will be presented by representatives from the Department's Division of Consumer Services, Division of Agent and Agency Services, and Division of Insurance Fraud, and in partnership with local organizations.

"Be Scam Smart" workshops are presented by investigators and fraud detectives from the Department of Financial Services who fight fraud every day in the Department. The Division of Consumer Services offers education and a Consumer Helpline that last year answered more than 325,000 calls and recovered $22.6 million for Florida consumers. More than 70 percent of the Division of Agent and Agency Services' recoveries last year were on behalf of seniors, and the Division of Insurance Fraud is a statewide sworn law enforcement agency that is a national leader in fraud arrests.

To learn more about Operation S.A.F.E. or register for a workshop, visit www.MyFloridaCFO.com/SAFE.



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