GARDINER, Maine — Insurance Superintendent Mila Kofman issued a final cease and desist order last week prohibiting American Trade Association and their operators from continuing their illegal activities in Maine. Kofman ordered them to pay outstanding medical bills, premium refunds and $1,161,500 in civil penalties. The case was prosecuted by Assistant Attorney General Andrew Black.
“Health insurance scams are on the rise,” Superintendent Kofman stated. “The reality is that they provide no real insurance coverage. This is one of many scams that have spread around the country. Consumers must protect themselves or be stuck with unpaid medical bills after having paid premiums.”
ATA, Tennessee-based entities, have collected over $22 million in premiums nationwide. On April 27, 2010, a Tennessee state court found that approximately $7 million in medical claims are owed and only $2.1 million in assets exist.
Kofman asks consumers with ATA coverage to contact the Bureau of Insurance if they have medical bills that have not been paid by ATA. She also asks physicians and other providers to contact the Bureau if they have medical bills that are outstanding with ATA. Kofman noted, “We will work with Tennessee to help ensure that Maine’s consumers and providers receive their fair portion from any available assets to help pay for outstanding medical bills.”
An emergency cease and desist order was issued on April 9.
Consumers with questions or concerns about their insurance can contact the Bureau’s Consumer Health Care Division by calling 1-800-300-5000, e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org, or visiting the Bureau’s website, www.maine.gov/insurance.