Let’s take a look at some telling examples of Bad Faith Life Insurance Companies including a few top brand name life insurance companies. Some of the widely used bad faith tactics of insurers include rescission and alleged application misrepresentation.
1. Lincoln National Life Insurance Company
This company is part of the giant Lincoln Financial Group, and sells different types of life insurance policies, and has more than 17 million customers for its various products.
Lincoln says that life insurance is: “… more than just a death benefit. Beyond providing a guaranteed benefit to your family in the event of death, Lincoln can also offer you: Financial protection for your loved ones or business; Income replacement; Supplemental retirement income; Account value growth to use as a financial resource; Tax-deferred asset protection and accumulation; An efficient means of transferring wealth; A source of funding for business owners.”
Lincoln stresses “protecting your family,” described as: “There’s nothing more rewarding than ensuring the well being of those you love. And one of the best ways to demonstrate how much you care is by putting the plans in place that will help keep your family safe and secure…. Whether it’s preparing your children for college or taking out life insurance, we’ve got solutions to help you take care of your family through every turning point, both now and in the future.”
The history of the Lincoln National Life Insurance Company includes many references to Abraham Lincoln, although he had nothing to do with the company and is just the appropriation of a symbol of honesty.
Have you had an experience with Lincoln National Life Insurance Company? Have they been true to their word? Here’s some bad faith examples to contemplate.
- In William Fountaine v. The Lincoln National Life Insurance Company et al., Case No. 14-cv-00497, U.S. District Court, Central District of California, Lincoln National ended the plaintiff’s payments, claiming that Fountaine did not meet the definition of disability pursuant to the long-term disability plan it provided to him through his employer, WDC Exploration and Wells, a Sacramento drilling company.
- According to the plaintiff’s attorney, Fountaine filed a timely appeal that was met with a denial on Apr. 23, 2013, and a second request for continuation of benefits which was also denied on Jan.17, 2014, “despite overwhelming evidence of a covered [long-term disability] claim.” These are exactly the types of activities a Life Insurance Company will do.
2. Life Insurance Company of the Southwest
This company is a part of the National Life Group of Companies. Life Insurance Company of the Southwest (“Southwest”) is based and licensed in Texas.
Southwest is part of the National Life Group, which states that: “Our goal – since the chartering of National Life Insurance Company in 1848 – has been to work together to create a better future for each and every customer through innovative financial solutions and then to deliver on those commitments 10, 20 or 50 years down the road. . . .
National Life has paid a dividend on its participating life insurance policies every year since 1855. Through the Civil War, the great flu epidemic of 1918, the Great Depression, two World Wars and most recently the Great Recession, National Life has delivered.. . .We are an independent company and independent in spirit. While we do business across the United States, at our core we retain the feel and the attitude of a small company in which each and every individual matters. We are grounded on America’s Main Street where a firm handshake still means something and trust is strong.”
Just a quick look here, and we can see issues with this company, as outlined in the class action suit Walker v. Life Ins. Co. of the SW:
- “Plaintiff alleged that the insurer violated California’s statutes because it touted the policies as retirement or investment vehicles, “misrepresent[ed]” the costs, risks, safety and security of the policies, treated policy lapse “in a misleading matter,” “deceptively present[ed] the guarantee values, fail[ed] to define key terms, and impl[ied] that nonguaranteed elements are annual guarantees.” The district court dismissed those claims at the pleading stage.
- The ruling suggests, though, that insurers selling individual life insurance policies in California may expect to see more lawsuits – individual and putative class actions – alleging violations in the illustration statutes. Given the Ninth Circuit’s pronouncement about the UCL unlawful prong more generally, insurers might also be faced with other statutory violations serving as UCL predicates.”
3. Jackson National Life Insurance Company
This is a U.S. company that offers annuities for retail investors and other financial products. Jackson’s subsidiaries and affiliates provide specialized asset management and retail brokerage services.
Founded in 1961, Jackson is headquartered in Lansing, Michigan, and was named after Andrew Jackson, the 7th President of the United States. By 1984, Jackson had grown to $1 billion in assets, and now has more than $220 billion in assets.
As you can see in this article, in Pensions & Investments, Jackson was ordered to pay a huge sum for illegal activities:
- “Jackson National Life Insurance Co. agreed to pay $4.5 million to settle allegations by participants in the company’s 401(k) plan that fiduciaries violated ERISA guidelines in the management of the plan.
- The settlement agreement, which must be approved by a U.S. District Court judge, was filed with the court Nov. 1. Plaintiffs filed the suit in March 2017 in District Court in Lansing, Mich.
- Jackson National “admits no wrongdoing or liability with respect to any of the allegations or claims,” said the settlement agreement in the class-action case Pease et al. vs. Jackson National Life Insurance Co.”
The holding company of Metropolitan Life Insurance Company. Metlife is among the largest global providers of insurance, annuities, and employee benefit programs, with 90 million customers in over 60 countries. The firm was founded in 1868, and from 2004 to 2011, MetLife held its position as the largest life insurer in the United States.
The company had $2.5 trillion in policies written, $350 billion in assets under management, over 12 million customers in the United States, 8 million customers outside the United States, and a net income in 2003 of $2.2 billion. That year, Barron’s reported that 13 million American households owned at least one product from MetLife. MetLife’s individual life insurance products and services comprise term life insurance and several types of permanent life insurance, including whole life, universal life, and final expense whole life insurance.
What are your experiences with Metlife? We can see here , as referenced in Plansponsor.com, in a recent lawsuit that Metlife:
- “… is failing to meet its obligations to ensure different annuity options under the plan are actuarially equivalent to the plan’s default benefit, as required under ERISA and the terms of the plan itself.
- “The complaint goes on to argue that defendants have violated ERISA’s anti-forfeiture rule and caused plaintiffs and other participants and beneficiaries of the plan injury ‘every month’.”
5. Allianz Life Insurance Company of North America
This is a company that provides annuities and life insurance products in the United States, and is based in Minneapolis, and offers fixed and variable annuities and life insurance, through a network of more than 100,000 agents nationwide.
Just a quick Google search uncover these deceptive insurance practices, featured in the Minneapolis Star Tribune:
- “A federal jury ruled that Allianz Life Insurance Company of North America used deceptive practices in selling a certain type of investment product known as an equity-indexed annuity, which is linked to the stock market.
- The verdict culminates a prolonged legal battle between Allianz Life and consumers who claimed the company enticed them into buying annuities with false promises of bonuses that never materialized.
- For years, the case cast a dark cloud over Allianz Life and other major insurance companies that sell these annuities. The companies were forced to defend their reputations — and pay out millions — as an onslaught of attorneys and state regulators said they were glossing over the complex nature of the products and locking older people into contracts from which they may not live long enough to fully benefit. Minnesota Attorney General Lori Swanson was among those who went after the company for sale of the products.”
- Allianz also agreed to pay $10 million dollars in a settlement with California Insurance Commissioner Steve Poizner’s office for allegedly targeting thousands of seniors and selling them annuities which were not suitable for their needs – as well as not informing them of the financial penalties for liquidating other stocks and securities, which they encouraged.
Have you dealt with any of these Bad Faith Life Insurance Companies? Have you suffered the unexpected loss of a loved one, only to have a claim for life insurance benefits delayed, or denied? Do you get the feeling that the life insurance company is doing everything it can to avoid paying the claim?
Has the life insurance company sent you a letter stating that they are rescinding the policy, making a rescission, or just sending back the premiums paid? Especially if your loved one had the policy for less than two years before passing away, the life insurance company can become very aggressive at seeking to avoid the policy payment. Rescission is a favored strategy of the life insurance company, if the policy was issued less than two years before the death.
We can help. Call LifeInsuranceLawyerNOW.com at(888) 997-4070, or(818) 937-0937, or send an email to us in the form on the side of the screen. We are highly experienced lawyers, not paralegals. We get right to it with you and the insurance company, and get many claims paid right away. If court is necessary, we are regular Federal litigators and will push the life insurance company hard for the well being of you and your family. We respect you, deal directly with you, and understand not only the law and facts, but what you are going through. We are here to help. Contact us as soon as possible to get your claim paid.