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CFO Atwater Orders Sarasota Travel Agency to Pay Back Floridians for Unauthorized Travel Insurance Claims

6/10/2011

Contact: Alexis Lambert
850-413-2842

TALLAHASSEE—Florida CFO Jeff Atwater announced today that the Department of Financial Services has reached an agreement with Sarasota-based Legendary Journeys, a statewide travel agency, to reimburse nearly $90,000 to dozens of Floridians.  An investigation conducted by the department determined that Legendary Journeys sold unauthorized travel insurance offered by Prime Travel Protection to Floridians from 2006 to 2008.
 
“I commend the dedicated staff who worked tirelessly for the Floridians who thought they were protected by purchasing this product,” said CFO Atwater.  “As a result, many Floridians will now be rightfully compensated for the financial losses they suffered as a result of the trust they placed in this company.” 
 
Legendary Journeys was one of 20 travel agencies that sold policies on behalf of Colorado-based Prime Travel Protection Services, Inc.¸ which was never licensed in Florida to sell insurance. This joint investigation was conducted by the divisions of Consumer Services, Rehabilitation and Liquidation, Legal Services, Agent and Agency Services, and Insurance Fraud.
The settlement amount is based on claims previously submitted to the department and determined to be valid. 
 
Travel insurance is a common product offered by travel agencies.  Before purchasing this product, consumers should verify that the insurance company providing the travel insurance coverage is licensed in the state of Florida.  Travel insurance can protect consumers against costs from unforeseeable circumstances, including trip cancellation, early return and emergency medical needs.
 
Consumers should also read the fine print before making a purchase, as the policies often contain exclusions for coverage.  If the insurer providing travel insurance coverage is not authorized, claims may not be honored.
 
To verify the licensure of an insurance company or agent, consumers should visit www.MyFloridaCFO.com or call the Consumer Helpline at 877-MY-FL-CFO (693-5236).
 
Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater, a statewide elected official and officer of the Florida Cabinet, oversees the Department of Financial Services. CFO Atwater’s priorities include fighting financial fraud, abuse and waste in government, reducing government spending and regulatory burdens that chase away businesses, and providing transparency and accountability in spending.