Dear Fellow Floridian:
This week, I announced the arrests of three individuals in unrelated but
similar PIP fraud investigations in Miami. Chiropractor David Louis
Hirschenson, 55, was arrested for illegally soliciting accident victims and
obtaining vehicle crash reports. Nester Sanchez, 39, and Chakira Vila
Puentes, 45, owners of C & N Therapy Center, were arrested for insurance
fraud and grand theft. I also announced the conviction of Yarden Lee Bracero,
39, a former Allstate employee in Jacksonville for diverting claims payments
for her own personal use.
Fraud schemes like these impact Floridians throughout the state by driving up
our insurance rates. I am proud of our investigators whose hard work helped
bring these fraudsters to justice, but the fight against fraud remains an
ongoing battle that requires our steadfast commitment. In the first nine months
of 2013, we have made 1,200 arrests related to fraud. That’s a 17 percent
increase from calendar year 2012, which saw 1,024 arrests.
Anyone who suspects insurance fraud is asked to call 1-800-378-0445. Citizens
who provide tips can remain anonymous.
The Department of Financial Services to date has awarded nearly $342,000 to
more than 50 citizens as part of its Anti-Fraud Reward Program. The program
rewards individuals up to $25,000 for information that directly leads to an
arrest and conviction in an insurance fraud scheme.
For more information about fraud and consumer protection, visit
Chief Financial Officer
State of Florida
CFO Atwater Offers ‘Paying for College: Controlling Your Degree of Debt’
In honor of College Savings Month in September, Florida Chief Financial
Officer Jeff Atwater announced that the Department of Financial Services is
teaming up for a second year with the Florida Association of Student
Financial Aid Administrators (FASFAA) to offer a free webinar entitled
“Paying for College: Controlling Your Degree of Debt.” As financial aid
application deadlines are fast approaching, this webinar will provide
valuable information on the variety of financial aid programs that can
minimize college debt.
is very important to our students and the well-being of our economy that higher
education becomes more affordable,” said CFO Atwater. “As a society, it is our
responsibility to provide these young adults with all of the resources available
to ensure their success.”
The next webinars are scheduled for 5:30 p.m. on Sept. 30th and 8:30 a.m. on
October 2nd. The webinars will provide information about the variety of
financial aid programs available, how financial need is determined, how to
calculate the true cost of education and how to complete all the steps in the
financial aid application process.
For more information or to register for a “Paying for College: Controlling
Your Degree of Debt” webinar, visit
or call the Division of Consumer Services helpline at 1-877-MY-FL-CFO
This webinar is offered as part of CFO Atwater’s Your Money Matters
initiative to help Floridians secure a firm financial foundation. This program
provides important financial information and resources to inspire all Floridians
to take charge of their financial future.
Innovation Drives Florida's Economy
Florida has worked hard to create an environment for long-term growth and
investment that allows businesses to better serve their communities and
employ more of their neighbors. This culture of economic innovation has
recognized as the “Most Innovative State in the Nation” by
Fast Company magazine this year.
Beginning with its edition on biotechnology, Florida’s Bottom Line
is presenting a three-part series on
Innovative Florida, highlighting the people and
industries that are driving our future as a diversified economy. We are now
recognized as one of the most attractive areas worldwide for the
biotechnology industry, with more than 200 biotechnology companies calling
The quarterly edition of Florida's Bottom Line is
complemented by its often-updated website,
www.MyFloridaCFO.com/FloridasBottomLine. When new
economic data is released, it can be found here. Florida's consumer
confidence, retail index, employment statistics and various other
resources will keep you up-to-date.