Truckers insurance shut down in Pennsylvania

| Wednesday, May 29, 2002

The Pennsylvania Insurance Commissioner last week ordered an unauthorized health insurance company serving truckers shut down. At least 53 Pennsylvania residents reportedly participated in the health plan.

O.T.R. Truckers Association Inc., a Pennsylvania company, and Over the Road Truckers Healthcare Fund of Georgia - collectively known as OTR - were never licensed or authorized by the state to transact business, said Commissioner M. Diane Koken. The company sold medical and hospitalization coverage to independent truckers and others in the transportation field.

In addition to potentially being left with unpaid claims, many employers and individuals who purchased insurance from unlicensed health plans have reported difficulty in securing new coverage because of pre-existing conditions and the subsequent lapse in continuous coverage, according to the state. Also, unlicensed entities do not participate in the state's guaranty funds that cover unpaid claims in the event a licensed insurer goes bankrupt.

The insurance department's order requires OTR to notify every agent plan participant that OTR is operating illegally. Once notified, consumers must secure new health insurance coverage. In addition, OTR is liable for all legitimate unpaid claims of anyone participating in the OTR plans.

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