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The Florida Office of Insurance Regulation (OIR) today announced a multi-agency, multi-million-dollar settlement agreement with John Hancock Life Insurance Co. The agreement focuses on the company’s business practices related to unclaimed property for life insurance products and its use of the Death Master File. The Death Master File is a list of everyone who has died as reported to the U.S. Social Security Administration.

“Companies are using the Death Master File to stop company payments for annuities—but do not use this same list to pay beneficiaries of people who have life insurance policies,” said Florida Insurance Commissioner Kevin McCarty. “Unfortunately, this appears to be a pervasive industry practice. The Office appreciates that John Hancock stepped-up and agreed to change its processes before any other company. The agreement with John Hancock will send a strong signal to other companies to audit and modify their practices.”

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