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Insurance Carrier: American Pension Company
State: Maryland

Consumer Complaint:

The American Pension Company is the insurance broker between Round House Theatre and Nationwide Insurance for our 403(b) tax sheltered annuity. We moved the plan to TIAA-CREF in June 06. I worked with the President to assist ex-employees with moving their money as well as the 3 current employees. The President refused to sign the papers for the current so Nationwide could release the funds. Nationwide was not supposed to talk to me but when I called they did tell me the problem was with the President. I had to involve a resolution specialist at Nationwide Insurance. He finally got the President to sign the papers for 2 of the 3 employees, 8 months after we asked him to. He collected fees that entire time from them. In July 07 the final employee tried to move his money from Nationwide. The President has refused to sign the papers for over a year now and will not return calls or e-mails from the employee, myself or the resolution specialist. The President has been deducting fees for a year and refuses to release the funds. I think this is illegal and unethical.


Insurance Expert Answer:

I think you are ABSOLUTELY right. It is also unconscionable.

First, file a formal complaint with the California Insurance Commissioner's Office. The agent should be subjected to censure or suspension for misconduct, although I doubt that much will happen. You may also want to write personally to the Commissioner, Steve Poisner, who is a very responsive and capable executive.

Second, if your 501(c)(3) theater company is similar to that of the Marin Theatre Company you undoubtedly have several lawyers on the Board. As this impacts the non-profit's plan I am sure one would be only to glad to at least send a "lawyer's letter" to the agent and company. Enlist their help.