Louisiana Insurance Commissioner Issues Cease and Desist Order to United HealthCare for Intention to Omit Producer Commissions in Louisiana
Insurance Commissioner Jim Donelon issued a cease and desist order today to United HealthCare Services, Inc. and/or UnitedHealthcare Insurance Company, its subsidiaries and affiliates (collectively hereafter referred to as “United”) for their intention to implement the removal of producer commissions from upcoming renewals of certain group health insurance products.
“In reviewing this situation I found it necessary to order the company to stop all efforts to implement such policy and to revise all applicable schedules of commissions and relevant rate and form filings to appropriately reflect the full commission payment required by law,” Commissioner Donelon stated. “This action is meant to both protect Louisiana’s health insurance producers who are due compensation and preserve our authority in making sure insurers writing in Louisiana are in compliance with our laws.”
The Louisiana Department of Insurance (LDI) was contacted in May by numerous producers who indicated that they had been notified of United’s intention to implement a zero-dollar schedule of commissions applicable to all policies sold to groups of greater than 100 insureds with an effective date on or after September 1, 2019. Accompanying this notification was an inducement to work with United and affected insureds to negotiate a “replacement” agency fee to be paid by the insured to the producer and an offer by United to facilitate this payment.
According to insurancenewsnet.com Health Agents for America President/CEO, Ronnell Nolan said, “It’s really appalling because our members have been fighting to get paid, and that bill is important. Lowering health care costs is what we want for our clients. But our members aren’t getting commissions on the individual market and UnitedHealthcare is not even paying for groups of 50 and above. So how can anybody point the arrow toward our members and say we’re part of the problem? We’re not part of the problem. Agents have been losing money since the passage of the ACA."
Health Agents for America has been fighting for agents all around the country. Days following HAFA's legislative campaign in Connecticut, Louisiana Commissioner Donelon found this intention by United to be contrary to certain provisions of the Louisiana Insurance Code including LA. R.S. 22:855 and 22:1568, which provide: