Thursday, July 19, 2012

Another Agent in the Clink

Regular readers may recall the sad story of Glen Neasham, who sold an annuity and went to jail. A bit further west, insurance agent Kathleen Kau has just been sentenced to 10 years in prison for "stealing more than $360,000 over five years from two longtime clients."

Most definitely not good customer service.

I'm a little unclear on how this worked, exactly: "Kau opened a post office box to receive mail for her victims after falsely informing Transamerica Life Insurance Co. that a fire destroyed [their] home ... Kau also asked the insurance company to mail a checkbook allowing her clients to tap their life insurance account savings because of the home loss."

I've never heard of a policy that has a checkbook feature as a living benefit. I've reached out to the reporter for clarification, and will update this post if/when I receive that.

This case obviously differs greatly from Mr Neasham's: according to the story, the agent clearly set out to defraud her clients victims. The prosecutor noted that she stopped doing so only "because there was no money left in the victims' accounts." Although TransAmerica has reimbursed the looted funds, one can only imagine how difficult it will be for the insureds to ever again trust a financial advisor.

No winners here.
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