April 12, 2010

Missouri Department of Insurance: Scam artists using federal health care law to sell bogus insurance

Jefferson City, Mo. - The Department of Insurance says scam artists are targeting Missouri consumers, offering fake insurance supposedly related to federal health care reform. Director John M. Huff says at least one St. Louis-area consumer has been approached by a door-to-door salesman claiming to be a federal agent selling insurance under the new law.

Huff says anyone claiming to work for the federal government offering an insurance product is a fraud, and he says seniors may be a prime target for the crooks.

"Scams based on current events are nothing new," said Huff. "We've seen it with everything from H1N1 to federal stimulus money to health care reform. Consumers should not be fooled and should stop, call and confirm."

Consumers should always verify that insurance agents and companies are licensed and authorized to do business with Missouri. Huff says the department can quickly help consumers determine whether they're dealing with the real thing or a scam. Consumers can use the Insurance Consumer Hotline at 1-800-726-7390 or contact the department online at insurance.mo.gov.

About the Missouri Department of Insurance, Financial Institutions & Professional Registration

The Missouri Department of Insurance, Financial Institutions and Professional Registration (DIFP) is responsible for consumer protection through the regulation of financial industries and professionals. The department's seven divisions work to enforce state regulations both efficiently and effectively while encouraging a competitive environment for industries and professions to ensure consumers have access to quality products.

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