Ohio authorities announced yesterday that Zurich American Insurance Company had agreed to pay the state $7 million in penalties and costs to settle various allegations including bid rigging with Marsh brokerage and other insurers.

Ohio Attorney General Jim Petro and Ohio Department of Insurance Director Ann Womer Benjamin said the insurer had misled customers and inflated premiums paid for commercial casualty insurance policies in violations of Ohio's antitrust and insurance laws.

Under the settlement, Zurich, without admitting wrongdoing, agreed to pay $5 million in civil penalties and $2 million to reimburse the state for attorneys' fees and investigative costs.

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