April 14, 2016
The long-running CBS News program 60 MINUTES featured an in-depth segment on Sunday April 17th, which examined the efforts of several unclaimed property officials around the country in their fight to ensure insurance companies are properly reporting and paying out unclaimed life insurance policies. Included in the segment were Florida CFO Jeff Atwater, Oklahoma State Treasurer Ken Miller, and West Virginia State Treasurer John D. Perdue.
The story by CBS News Correspondent Lesley Stahl exposed the tactics and motivation behind efforts in several states by life insurance companies to block unclaimed property programs from discovering and returning policy proceeds to its rightful owners. The treasurers are speaking out strongly in favor of consumer protection.
Treasurer Miller, who was interviewed in the program, said “It is my hope that by shining a national spotlight on the shameful tactics of these out-of-state insurance companies, their plans will be squelched.” Florida CFO, Jeff Atwater, whose state just passed a bill that strengthens consumer protections related to life insurance, hopes his work can increase “…the number of policies that are properly—and timely—paid out.” Treasurer Perdue, who was featured returning an unclaimed life insurance check, is glad to help raise awareness. “I am glad ’60 Minutes’ is taking a more in-depth look at this issue, and shining a light on what’s being done here in West Virginia and around the country to make sure insurance companies report unclaimed funds similarly to any other business,” Perdue said.
Watch the segment here:
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Story Excerpt: The National Association of State Treasurers recently outlined some legislative priorities that would broaden ABLE accounts’ reach..