New York State
Insurance Department
 

DISCIPLINARY ACTIONS


New York, April 7, 1998

The following tables show the Licensee in Column One,  Address in Column Two, and the Penalty in Column Three.  The bottom row of each table describes the circumstances.  

 

 Insurance Companies

STIPULATIONS

Disciplinary actions as a result of stipulations have been agreed to by the licensees.

 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Clarendon National Ins. Co. 1177 Avenue of the Americas
New York, NY
$88,000 fine
A market conduct investigation revealed that the company violated the Insurance Law and Department regulations when, in connection with certain commercial multiple peril Franchise Automobile Dealer insurance policies issued or renewed between January 1, 1996 and December 31, 1996, it charged unfiled rates. Clarendon also violated Regulation 129 (flex-rating) when it modified rates in excess of the required bands.

 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
First Ameritas Life Insurance Corporation of New York 400 Rella Blvd.
Suffern, NY
$15,000 fine
The company violated the Insurance Law and Department regulations when it used policy application forms that had not been approved by the Department. In addition, First Ameritas Life failed to obtain the written informed consent of applicants prior to having them take an HIV-related test. The company also mailed to certain policyholders an annual report with material that only mentioned the name of its parent company, not First Ameritas Life itself.

 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Atlas Assurance Co. of America 600 College Road East
Princeton, NJ
$8,850 fine
A market conduct investigation revealed that the company violated the Insurance Law and Department regulations when, in connection with certain commercial multiple peril insurance policies issued or renewed between May 1, 1996 and April 30, 1997, it charged unfiled rates. The company also failed to list specific reasons on nonrenewal notices and failed to comply with the 15-day time frame for cancellation notices. Atlas Assurance also failed to report fire losses to the Property Insurance Loss Register in a timely manner and failed to deliver anti-arson applications to insureds within specified time frames.

 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
GA Insurance Co. of New York


PG Insurance Co. of New York

436 Walnut St.
Philadelphia, PA

same as above

$6,875 fine

 
$2,500 fine

Market conduct investigations revealed that the companies, members of the General Accident Insurance Group, violated the Insurance Law and Department regulations when, in connection with certain commercial multiple peril insurance policies issued or renewed between March 1, 1996 and February 28, 1997, they failed to establish adequate procedures to minimize the occurrence of improperly charged rates.

In addition, GA Insurance Company placed business in the free trade zone without obtaining the proper license and failed to place the appropriate special risk classification code on all required documents. GA Insurance also failed to apply its experience rating plan to risks that qualified.

  

FINES FOR LATE FINANCIAL STATEMENTS

The following health maintenance organizations (HMOs) and other insurers have been fined for late submissions of their quarterly or annual financial statements. 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Empire Blue Cross and Blue Shield Healthnet 622 Third Ave.
New York, NY
$19,000 fine

  

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Healthsource NY/NJ 195 Broadway
New York, NY
$1,000 fine

  

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
New York Care Plus Ins. Co. 1901 Main St.
Buffalo, NY
$1,000 fine

  

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Prudential Health Care Plan of New York 400 Rella Blvd.
Suffern, NY
$1,000 fine

  

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
United Health Care of New York


United Health Care of Upstate New York

2 Penn Plaza
New York, NY

5015 Campuswood Dr.
Syracuse, NY

$500 fine  


$500 fine

 

Agents, Brokers, Adjusters, Consultants and Others

HEARINGS

Disciplinary actions as a result of Department hearings are subject to judicial review and possible stay of enforcement. 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Ali, Mohammad S.
(broker)
2444 Tiemann Ave.
Bronx, NY
License revoked
Ali listed on an automobile insurance policy the name of a child as the applicant/owner and put down a false birthdate. In addition, Ali issued a premium check that was dishonored by the bank, but subsequently replaced. Ali failed to present his records to the Department for an audit.

  

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Berberena, Jaime
(broker)
1549 Westchester Ave.
Bronx, NY
$300 fine
Issued premium checks that were dishonored by the bank, but subsequently replaced. In addition, Berberena failed to submit the required Driver Verification Form for an insurance application sent to the New York Automobile Insurance Plan.

  

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Brito, Jose M.
(broker)
354 Graham Ave.
Brooklyn, NY
License revoked
Issued premium checks that were dishonored by the bank, only some of which were subsequently replaced. In addition, Brito collected a premium payment and failed to forward it in its entirety to the appropriate insurer. Brito was also decertified from the New York Automobile Insurance Plan for various violations of Plan rules.

  

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Casimir, Marie C.
(agent & broker)

t/b/a Hempstead Ins. Brokerage
23 Gilroy Ave.
Uniondale, NY
Licenses revoked
Casimir allowed a revoked broker and an unlicensed individual to conduct insurance business on her behalf. She also accepted service fees without obtaining the signed service fee agreements and was decertified from the New York Automobile Insurance Plan for various violations of Plan rules.

 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Castellanos, Leonardo V.
(broker)
3 South Village Ave.
Rockville Centre, NY
License revoked
Castellanos commingled premiums with other funds. He was also decertified from the New York Automobile Insurance Plan for various violations of Plan rules and then produced fraudulent Driver Verification Forms to conceal certain of those violations.

 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Chaitkin, Joseph R.
(agent & broker)
7304 5th Ave.
Brooklyn, NY
License revoked
Chaitkin was decertified from the New York Automobile Insurance Plan for various violations of Plan rules. He also sent a letter to the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles that falsely stated that a client had continuous automobile coverage when, in fact, the policy had been terminated.

 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Damour, Eden
(broker)
221-18 Linden Blvd.
Cambria Heights, NY
License revoked
Issued premium checks that were dishonored by the bank, only some of which were subsequently replaced. In addition, Damour conducted insurance business under unlicensed names.

  

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Diaz, Rafael
(agent)
795 Pelham Parkway North
Bronx, NY
License revoked
Issued premium checks that were dishonored by the bank, and conducted insurance business under an unlicensed name.

  

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Henderson, Samuel
(agent)
143-42 Glassboro Ave.
Jamaica, NY
License revoked
Misappropriated premium monies.

  

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Herlock, Patricia A.
(agent & broker)
241-16 Coney Rd.
Rosedale, NY
Licenses revoked
Accepted a fraudulent automobile insurance application not signed in her presence as well as a forged check for the policy.

 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
H.I.S. Agency, Inc
(agent)


Sanders, Terri Lynn
(sublicensee)
39 Genesee County Mall
Batavia, NY
License revoked
Convicted of petty larceny in connection with converting clients’ fiduciary funds. In addition, collected premium payments and failed to forward them to the appropriate insurer and charged an excessive service fee without obtaining a signed service fee agreement.

 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Jimenez, Julio C
(broker)
201 Sherman Ave
New York, NY
License revoked
Failed to properly verify Driver Identification Forms and allowed an unlicensed individual to conduct insurance business.



LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Kochner, Howard M
(agent)
43-60 Douglaston Parkway
Douglaston, NY
License revoked
Failed to respond to Department requests for additional information after indicating on his license renewal application that he had filed for bankruptcy.

  

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Lafler, Donald O.
(agent)
5869 Canadice Lake Rd.
Springwater, NY
$1,000 fine
Violated Department Regulation 60* when he placed a life insurance policy with New York Life Insurance Company.

 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
LaGuidice, Thomas M.
(agent)
3 Rene Dr.
Staten Island, NY
$5,500 fine
Misrepresented the terms, benefits and conditions of insurance policies to certain clients.

 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Maydwell, Joseph P.
(agent)
61 Bronx River Rd.
Yonkers, NY
License revoked
Collected premium payments and failed to forward them to the appropriate insurers. In addition, Maydwell collected service fees without obtaining a signed service fee agreement.

 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Merritt, Charles B.
(agent & broker)

t/b/a Future Financial Insurance
824 Court St.
Syracuse, NY
Licenses revoked
Collected premium payments and failed to forward them to the appropriate insurers. In addition, Merritt issued premium checks that were dishonored by the bank and issued temporary automobile insurance identification cards without submitting the corresponding insurance applications.

 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Pezo, Walter
(agent & broker)
2100 Bartow Ave.
Bronx, NY
Licenses revoked
Pezo was decertified from the New York Automobile Insurance Plan for various violations of Plan rules.

 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Ray, Raymond M.
(agent)
44 Ida St.
Troy, NY
License revoked
Collected premium payments and failed to forward them to the appropriate insurer or procure the insurance coverage. In addition, Ray falsely indicated on his licensing applications that there wasn’t any criminal action pending against him.

 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Shirley Mastic Ins. Agency
(agent & broker)
 

Spataro, Michael V.
(agent, broker & sublicensee)

1265-C Montauk Highway
Mastic, NY
 

1135 William Floyd Parkway
Shirley, NY

$2,000 fine
Failed to forward automobile insurance applications to the appropriate insurers and allowed an unlicensed individual to conduct insurance business.

 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Sias, Richard P.
(agent)
203 Northampton St.
Easthampton, MA
License revoked
Failed to submit requested documents to the Department after filing for bankruptcy.

 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
SIGMA Insurance Brokerage
(broker)
 

Sousouris, Paula
(sublicensee)

34-11 Broadway
Astoria, NY
License revoked
Issued premium checks that were dishonored by the bank.

 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Smith, Michael
(broker)

t/b/a MCS Brokerage Company
2113 East 33rd St.
Brooklyn, NY
License revoked
Issued premium checks that were dishonored by the bank, only one of which was subsequently replaced.

 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Stabile, Robert A.
(agent)
63 33rd St.
Copiague, NY
License revoked
Failed to pay the Department a $1,500 fine for borrowing money from a policyholder, failing to furnish a policyholder with a life insurance policy for the mandatory ten-day review, and delaying cancellation of the policy to prevent loss of commission.

 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Tavarez, Fritz V
(agent & broker)
2950 W. 35th St.
Brooklyn, NY
Licenses revoked
Issued premium checks that were dishonored by the bank and commingled premiums with other funds. In addition, Taverez allowed an unlicensed individual to conduct insurance business and failed to complete Driver Verification Forms when submitting automobile insurance applications.

  

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Team Brokerage Corp.
(broker)

Polanco, Rafael D.
(broker & sublicensee)

241 Sherman Ave.
New York, NY

same as above

License revoked


Licenses revoked

Issued premium checks that were dishonored by the bank, only some of which were subsequently replaced.

 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Tri-Angle Insurance Brokerage
(broker)
 

Rivera, Melinda
(sublicensee)

759 East 149th St.
Bronx, NY
License revoked
Issued premium checks that were dishonored by the bank, only some of which were subsequently replaced. In addition, Rivera converted to her own purposes a check payable to her client and then falsely informed the Department that the money had been repaid. She also collected a premium payment and failed to forward it in its entirety to the appropriate insurer.

 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Villanueva, Augusto
(broker)
384 Keap St.
Brooklyn, NY
License revoked
Submitted insurance applications to the New York Automobile Insurance Plan where the driver denied knowing the applicant.

 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Webster, Sean G.
(agent)
235-40 148th Ave.
Rosedale, NY
$1,500 fine
Issued premium checks that were dishonored by the bank, but subsequently replaced, and commingled premiums with other funds. In addition, Webster failed to respond to Department inquiries concerning a letter that was written from his office without his knowledge that falsely informed the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles that a policyholder had continuous automobile coverage during a certain time period.

 

 STIPULATIONS

Disciplinary actions as a result of stipulations have been agreed to by the licensees.   

 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Alvarez, Carlos
(broker)
563 West 139th St
New York, NY
$1,000 fine
Failed to complete Driver Verification Forms as required by New York Automobile Insurance Plan rules.

 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Anabella Tours, Inc.
(broker)
 

Soriano, Ramon E.
(broker & sublicensee)

291 East 170th St.
Bronx, NY
 

same as above

$1,000 fine
Issued premium checks that were dishonored by the bank, but subsequently replaced, and commingled premiums with other funds.

 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Avon Excess, Ltd
.

Avon Group, Inc.
(broker)

Hyams, Lawrence

Hyams, Jerrold E.

90 John St.
New York, NY

same as above  


same as above

same as above

$134,500 taxes
The company filed Article 78 proceedings challenging the Department’s decision imposing taxes, penalties and interest in connection with the taxation of inland marine insurance exposures on ocean marine insurance policies. These proceedings have ended and the companies have agreed to pay the taxes.

 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Chin, Barry F.
(agent & broker)
896 West Gate
North Valley Stream, NY
$2,500 fine
Chin was decertified from the New York Automobile Insurance Plan for various violations of Plan rules including submitting applications with low premium deposits and underestimated premium amounts.**

 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Dimver & Associates, Inc.
(broker)
 

Verkhovsky, Dmitry
(agent, broker & sublicensee)
t/b/a Dimver Associate

2623 Ocean Ave.
Brooklyn, NY
 

277 Homecrest Ave
Brooklyn, NY

$500 fine
Issued premium checks that were dishonored by the bank, but subsequently replaced.

 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Duran, Griselda
(broker)

t/b/a Duran Travel and
Insurance Agency
167 Wilson Ave.
Brooklyn, NY
$1,500 fine
Issued premium checks that were dishonored by the bank, but subsequently replaced.

 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Evans, Glenn P.
(broker)
19 Bruce Dr.
Centereach, NY
$1,750 fine
Conducted insurance business prior to becoming licensed.

 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Evans, Sherry L.
(broker)
19 Bruce Dr.
South Setauket, NY
$3,000 fine
Submitted applications to the New York Automobile Insurance Plan with low premium deposits or underestimated premium amounts.** In addition, Evans charged excessive service fees and failed to obtain signed service fee agreements.

 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Galvin, John M.
(agent & broker)
420 Lexington Ave.
New York, NY
$1,000 fine
Issued a premium check that was dishonored by the bank, and commingled premiums with other funds.

 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Gogel, William A.
(broker)
291 Broadway
New York, NY
License revoked
Pled guilty to one count of felony information charging him with conspiracy to structure payments and to defraud the Internal Revenue Service.



LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Goldhirsch, David N.
(broker)
2819 Church Ave.
Brooklyn, NY
$1,500 fine
Issued premium checks that were dishonored by the bank, and commingled premiums with other funds.

 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Hall II, James L.
(agent)
520 Madison Ave.
New York, NY
$500 fine
Stated on his licensing application that he had not been disciplined by any State or other governmental authorities when, in fact, he had been disciplined by the states of Georgia and Utah.

 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Hazel, Terry M.
(independent adjuster)
1500 Central Ave.
Albany, NY
$2,500 fine
Allowed an unlicensed individual to conduct insurance business. In addition, Hazel conducted insurance business under an unlicensed name.

 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
J. Travel Agency, Inc.
(broker)
 

Jorge, Jose L.
(broker & sublicensee)

64-01 Broadway
Woodside, NY 

same as above

$500 fine
Issued premium checks that were dishonored by the bank, but subsequently replaced.


LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Keary/Elliot Agency, Inc.
(agent & broker)
 

Keary Jr., Martin J.
(sublicensee)

225 River St.
Troy, NY
$500 fine
Issued premium checks that were dishonored by the bank, but subsequently replaced.

 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
King Jr., Matthew J.
(agent & broker)
24 Van Etten Blvd.
New Rochelle, NY
$2,500 fine
King was decertified from the New York Automobile Insurance Plan for various violations of Plan rules.



LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
MDS Assoc. of NY, LTD.
(agent & broker)
 

Paparopoli, Maria A.
(sublicensee)

9301 Avenue L
Brooklyn, NY
$500 fine
In an insurance advertisement, MDS failed to name the insurer, its principal office and the requirements necessary to qualify for the quoted premium.

 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Mena, Renato R.
(broker)
611 W. 171st St.
New York, NY
$500 fine
Commingled premiums with other funds.

 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Mitchell, Gerald K.
(broker)
88-12 Albert Rd.
Ozone Park, NY
$1,500 fine
Issued premium checks that were dishonored by the bank, but subsequently replaced. In addition, premiums were commingled with other funds.

 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Morrone, Frank V.
(independent adjuster
license pending)
263 Maple La.
Valatie, NY
$1,000 fine
Performed damage appraisals without being licensed.

 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Onyeji, Theodore I.
(agent & broker)

t/b/a DBL Merchant Ins. Agency
25 Elmer Ave.
Buffalo, NY
$500 fine
Failed to properly complete a Driver Verification Form for an automobile insurance application.

  

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Pelino, Richard N.
(agent)
1329 Campville Rd.
Endicott, NY
$1,501 fine
Violated Department Regulation 60* when he placed a life insurance policy with Prudential Insurance Company of America.

 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Resolus, Marc A
(agent & broker)
429 43rd St.
Copiague, NY
$1,000 fine
Failed to complete Driver Verification Forms when submitting two applications to the New York Automobile Insurance Plan on which the listed operator was different from the named insured.

 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Sadiq, Mohammad A.
(agent & broker)

t/b/a Ampa Ins. Brokerage
467 Elwood Rd.
E. Northport, NY
$2,000 fine
Issued premium checks that were dishonored by the bank, but subsequently replaced, and commingled premiums with other funds.

 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Sanchez, Carlos G.
(broker)
83-02 Broadway
Elmhurst, NY
$3,000 fine
Issued premium checks that were dishonored by the bank, but subsequently replaced.



LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Schelmbauer, John L.
(agent & broker)
31 Lakewood Dr.
Saratoga Springs, NY
Licenses revoked
Violated Department Regulation 60* when he placed a life insurance policy with Prudential Insurance Company of America.

 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Sullivan, Bernice
(broker)
369 Peninsula Blvd.
Hempstead, NY
$250 fine
Sullivan failed to respond in a timely manner to Department inquiries concerning a complaint made against her.

 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
U.S.A. Multiservice, Inc.
(broker) 

Abikarram, Jesus Z.
(agent, broker & sublicensee)

93-A Featherbed La.
Bronx, NY
 

3817 Third Ave.
Bronx, NY

$1,500 fine
Decertified from the New York Automobile Insurance Plan for various violations of Plan rules.

 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Valdez, Jose A.
(broker)
3868 Broadway
New York, NY
License revoked
Pled guilty to two counts of mail fraud and one count of wire fraud.

 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Vitale Agency, Inc.
(pending broker’s license)
 

Wayne Vitale and Company
(broker) 

Vitale, Wayne
(broker & sublicensee)

8 Lakeview Dr.
Manorville, NY
 

4 7th St.
Center Moriches, NY 

4 7th St.
Center Moriches, NY

$1,500 fine
In an advertisement comparing insurance costs, they failed to include the complete comparison of costs and benefits, and coverage statements or forms as required.

 

LICENSEE ADDRESS PENALTY
Yam, Vincent
(agent & broker)
148-02 35th Ave.
Flushing, NY
$500 fine
Failed to complete a Driver Verification Form for an automobile insurance application submitted to the New York Automobile Insurance Plan.

 

* Regulation 60 requires agents to provide prospective life insurance purchasers with pertinent facts when that purchase will cause the buyer to surrender, lapse, or in any way change the status of an existing life insurance policy. The agent must provide the purchaser with a disclosure statement and a notice regarding replacement of life insurance.

 

** This practice, referred to as lowballing, occurs when an agent or broker intentionally misquotes premium information in order to undercut the competition. Although the insured’s deposit reflects the quoted lower premium, the policyholder is eventually billed by the insurer for the difference.