http://bangordailynews.com/2012/11/09/b ... stigation/
Fairfield insurance broker loses license, fined $1,500 after investigation
By Whit Richardson, BDN Staff
Posted Nov. 09, 2012, at 12:30 p.m.
GARDINER, Maine — The Maine Bureau of Insurance has fined and permanently revoked the license of a Maine insurance broker after a lengthy investigation revealed he improperly and, in some cases, fraudulently sold annuities to a client to pocket $180,000 in commissions.
Keith Page, who ran insurance and financial planning businesses in Fairfield, has signed a consent agreement with the bureau and the Maine attorney general’s office admitting to allegations he facilitated a series of improper and fraudulent annuity transactions over the course of four years.
The bureau has permanently revoked Page’s license to sell insurance in the state, which he’s had since 1996, and fined him $1,500, according to the consent agreement. Attempts to contact Page were not successful.
Page’s victim was a woman identified only as “C.M.” in the consent agreement. C.M. met Page when he was an Allstate agent and she was the owner of an Allstate agency.
After C.M.’s husband died, she sold the business and real estate and ended up with a net worth of more than $2 million, according to the consent agreement. Page, who had opened his own insurance agency by this point, helped C.M. with the sale of her agency and her future financial planning.
Over the course of four years, from August 2006 to February 2010, Page arranged 17 annuity sales or replacements with ten insurance companies that allowed him to collect more than $180,000 in commissions.
The bureau’s investigation revealed that several of those annuity sales or replacements were fraudulent or displayed Page’s lack of trustworthiness and financial irresponsibility by omitting necessary information in some cases, and using false information in others. He also made recommendations to C.M. that were not in her best interest, according to the agreement.
As a result of the bureau’s investigation, insurance companies have returned more than $1.3 million to C.M. without interest and penalties, according to a media release from the bureau.
As for Page’s fine, the insurance bureau is limited by statute in the amount of civil penalties it can impose, in this case $500 per violation, according to Doug Dunbar, a spokesperson for the bureau.
“In these cases, the agreement’s larger penalty is the permanent loss of the producer’s Maine insurance license and thereby the ability to pursue a living in the insurance field in Maine,” Dunbar said. “Additionally, it should also be noted that the agreement does not preclude the victim or perhaps the involved insurance companies from pursuing legal action.”
Page was CEO of Maine Street Advisors, an insurance agency he founded in 2007, and Maine Street Wealth Management, a financial planning firm he founded in 2010, according to the Maine Bureau of Corporations, Elections and Commissions. The address of both firms was in Fairfield.
Both businesses were “administratively dissolved” in August 2011, according to state records.
concernsme 11/09/2012 12:59 PM
180k profit for a 1500 dollar fine. Who says crime doesn't pay?
Flag 7 people liked this. Like wollydevil 11/09/2012 01:04 PM in reply to concernsme
i was thinking the same thing .
Flag 2 people liked this. Like beemare 11/10/2012 12:08 AM in reply to concernsme
“Additionally, it should also be noted that the agreement does not preclude the victim or perhaps the involved insurance companies from pursuing legal action.”. If civil legal action follows, he won't get off the hook so easily especially if the insurance companies go after him.
Flag Like 1964yawdem 11/09/2012 01:03 PM
180000.00 Is civil? Hey Disgusta time to change the law and start locking these crooks up!
Flag 6 people liked this. Like MeCruzingMaine 11/09/2012 01:37 PM
Hmmm... Maine, "Open for Business"!
Flag 3 people liked this. Like 66readerwriter 11/09/2012 03:07 PM
There is never any shortage of these guys who look to prey on widows.
Flag 2 people liked this. Like AVOICEINTHECROWD Yesterday 11:57 AM
There is no crime here. He was wearing the right color collar, white. If his collar had been blue, he would be in Warren.
Flag 1 person liked this. Like billswifey 11/09/2012 05:30 PM
If this loser walked into a convenience store and stole $300.00 he would be in jail!!
Stealing this way, he keeps the $180,000.00 and only has to pay a $1500 fine????????? No mention of restitution?
Flag 1 person liked this. Like EastofChamberlainNorth 11/10/2012 07:40 PM
Annuities are junk and expensive junk at that. Prudent consumers should steer well clear of junky insurance products like that.
First, they are designed to do one thing--part you from your money in exchange for guaranteed payments for the rest of your life. The insurance company takes your money and invests it, giving you a cut. Your cut is predetermined by actuarials ensuring that they come out ahead at the end 99% of the time. At the end of the day they still have your principal. You have nothing to leave your heirs.
Financial advisers love to sell these things. Why? They get a big percentage up front for parting you with a chunk of money. Big percentages. They scare people into thinking that they need the "safety" of a "guaranteed" income so that they part with their retirment money.
Be smarter than them. Take your money to a reputable discretionary money manager (a "registered representative" ) and have them invest it for you to preserve and appreciate the principal, while producing some income. Voila--your own annuity with the added bonus that you will then have a nice chunk of money to leave to your heirs.