Public advised to exercise caution on pre-need firms

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    Insurance Commissioner Dennis Funa said the public should be wary in dealing with firms Golden Age Elderly Care Inc. and Benevolent Care Program Association for their insurance and pre-need requirements.

    Funa said the Insurance Commission (IC) found the firms were mere continuations of Majar Senior Citizen Damayan Inc. (Majar Damayan) and Majar Insurance Agency and Business Ventures Inc. – entities previously ordered to cease and desist from doing insurance and pre-need activities.

    The cease and desist orders (CDO) against Majar Damayan and Majar Insurance were issued in 2015 and 2017, respectively, after it was found that they offer insurance and pre-need products without securing a secondary license from the IC.

    “Despite the cease and desist order issued by the IC against Majar Damayan and Majar Insurance, they continue to accept members and investors through other entities under different names. Based on the investigation conducted by the IC, it appears that Golden Age and Benevolent Care were formed to evade the CDOs issued by the Commission, in 2015 and 2017 against Majar Damayan and Majar Insurance, respectively,” said Funa.

    “This is demonstrated by the fact that both Golden Age and Benevolent Care assumed the collection of payments under the contracts issued by Majar Damayan and Majar Insurance based on the documentary evidence submitted to the IC,” he added.

    Funa said the IC has issued a similar CDO to Manuel Jarapa, in his capacity as president of Golden Age and Benevolent.

    “These companies were ordered to stop from selling any insurance and/or pre-need products, or from performing any activities that only an insurance or pre-need company licensed by the IC can legally do,” he said.

    The IC also ordered Jarapa to return all the contributions paid by all their members.
    “This directive is without prejudice to the filing of appropriate cases against individuals found to be responsible for these alleged activities,” Funa said.

    “Considering that the operation of these companies have been illegal from the beginning, as they are operating as insurance and pre-need companies without being licensed by the IC, that they do not have the right to hold the money of their members,” Funa added.

    Funa said he also tapped the National Bureau of Investigation, through NBI director Dante Gierran, in investigating the case and in filing the appropriate criminal cases.

    “Commissioner Funa reiterated its advice to the public to avoid dealing with individuals, groups, and entities representing Majar Damayan and Majar Insurance which had been enticing the public to pay a membership fee in exchange for insurance coverage, health care services, and burial cash assistance, among others,” the IC said.