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presslogo_dinapoli_comptroller_nyreblog_com_.gifAttorney General and Comptroller Team Up To Ensure Proper Payment of Life Insurance Benefits

Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman and State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli yesterday announced a new initiative to ensure that New Yorkers receive any unpaid life insurance benefits. The collaboration stems from data uncovered by both offices that indicated some funds may have been improperly withheld.

"Together, our offices will undertake the largest and most comprehensive investigation of life insurance practices in the country," Attorney General Schneiderman said. "Our goal is to make sure that life insurance companies make good on their promises to beneficiaries and their obligations to the state of New York."

"By combining the Attorney General's enforcement authority with the Comptroller's Office audit methodology, we can achieve the maximum public benefit," Comptroller DiNapoli said.

In early 2011, Attorney General Schneiderman's Taxpayer Protection Bureau launched an investigation into the life insurance industry's failure to pay death benefits and to turn over unclaimed policy proceeds to the Comptroller's Office as required by the state's Abandoned Property Law. At the same time, the Comptroller's Office began an independent review of life insurance companies using new data-matching methods.

The Attorney General's Taxpayer Protection Bureau, created by Attorney General Schneiderman earlier this year, is charged with investigating fraud against the state and local governments. This includes monies owed to the state's unclaimed property fund which might have been improperly withheld.