Andy Beshear attempting to take up insurance case after Bevin administration drops case

02/15/2016 03:59 PM

Attorney General Andy Beshear is trying to take over an insurance case that’s before the state Supreme Court after the state’s Department of Insurance dropped the case last week.

Beshear said he is “amazed and appalled” that the Department of Insurance under Gov. Matt Bevin “abandoned thousands of Kentuckians” when they refused to try an ongoing case relating to the Unclaimed Life Insurance Benefits Act.

The Democratic Attorney General said he will be stepping in on behalf of Kentuckians to get a resolution to the ongoing case.

“While it will be an uphill battle, if the Department will not fight for Kentuckians, I most certainly will,” Beshear said in a statement. “At the same time, this issue is too important to too many Kentuckians who struggled to purchase these policies in the first place.”

Beshear now has little time to formulate the required paperwork and petition the court to allow him to represent the case, which he feels is rooted in consumer protection.

At issue is whether or not the Unclaimed Life Insurance Benefits Act, passed in 2012, can apply retroactively to existing policies prior to the passage of the law. Several insurance companies have challenged the law, which sent the challenge to Franklin Circuit Court where the state won, but the Court of Appeals overturned the ruling, forcing the issue to the state Supreme Court.

After the case was dropped by the Bevin Administration the Lexington Herald-Leader reported that the drop of the case was a surprise to the bill’s sponsor former Rep. Bob Damron of Nicholasville.

Rep. Chris Harris, D-Forest Hills, filed legislation this session to clarify that the Unclaimed Life Insurance Benefits Act is intended to be retroactive. A move Beshear applauded in his statement.

“Like these House members, I believe my job as the Attorney General is to protect consumers, and while the Department of Insurance’s consumer protection division appears to have forgotten its duty, I have not,” Beshear said.


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