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Texas Official Signs MetLife Fund Consent Order

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NU Online News Service, Nov. 14, 11:20 a.m. – Texas Insurance Commissioner Jose Montemayor has signed a consent order that will give 5,475 African-American and Hispanic Texas residents access to a fund that MetLife Inc., New York, set up to resolve a dispute over race-based life insurance pricing practices.

Texas policyholders, former policyholders and beneficiaries could collect about $1.6 million from the fund, according to the Texas Department of Insurance. The amount is Texas’ share of a nationwide regulatory settlement worked out through the National Association of Insurance Commissioners, Kansas City, Mo.

MetLife agreed to the consent order without admitting any violation of Texas insurance laws, the Texas department says.

The consent order summarizes past allegations that MetLife “in connection with the sale of industrial life and small face amount life insurance policies has violated the insurance laws of the State of Texas by charging African-Americans and other minority individuals more in premium or providing fewer benefits than they charged or provided other individuals similarly situated,” according to the department.