Berger & Montague is representing proposed classes of
California and New York employers who participated in Applied
Underwriters Inc.'s EquityComp or SolutionOne workers compensation
insurance at any time between January 1, 2006 and the present.
Applied Underwriters Inc. is a Berkshire Hathaway subsidiary
that designs financial services and workers' compensation solutions
for small and midsized businesses. Plaintiffs allege that from at
least January 2006 to the present, Applied Underwriters deceptively
marketed and sold unlawful workers' compensation insurance programs
under the names EquityComp and SolutionOne.
workers' compensation insurance?
Workers' compensation insurance covers employers for medical
costs and a portion of lost wages for an employee who becomes
injured or ill as a result of their employment. State law requires
insurance companies offering workers compensation insurance
policies to file all policy forms and the rates charged with the
state Insurance Commissioner.
Workers' compensation insurance is usually sold to employers
through one of two forms of insurance policies:
- Guaranteed Cost (GC) Policy: A policy where
the insurance premium is fixed at the start of the policy period,
regardless of subsequent claims experienced during the policy
- Retrospective Rating Plan (RRP) Policy: A
policy where the premium charged at the beginning of the policy
period is subject to change depending on the actual claims
experience incurred during the policy period.
Regardless of the employers' claims and loss experience during
the term of either a GC or RRP workers' compensation insurance
policy, the amounts owed by the employer cannot exceed either the
fixed GC premium or the RRP maximum possible premium.
Applied Underwriters' workers' compensation insurance
Applied Underwriters markets and sells its EquityComp and
SolutionOne workers compensation insurance programs to small and
midsized employers as "Profit Sharing" plans that operate as RRP
policies. Through the use of a "Reinsurance Participation
Agreement" (RPA) that is not filed with state insurance regulators,
Applied Underwriters attempts to convert the filed and approved one
year GC policies that it sells into an RRP policy. In order
to sign up for the GC policy and obtain workers compensation
insurance, employers must also sign the RPA, which requires a three
year commitment rather than a single year. However, the RPA
is never filed with or approved by state insurance regulators and
contains onerous provisions modifying the terms of the GC
Using the RPA, Applied Underwriters:
- Bills and collects money from employers that exceeds the
estimated maximum cost of the EquityComp and SolutionOne
- Refuses to provide information to employers explaining how
monthly invoices are calculated;
- Misrepresents and/or omits from program information provided to
employers the anticipated total program costs;
- Charges and collects significant penalties when an
employer participant leaves the EquityComp or SolutionOne
program before their three-year term expires;
- Multiplies and inflates existing claim reserve requirements to
require additional payments from employers;
- Charges premiums, costs, and fees that are not based on the
participants own claims but which instead underwrite the claims of
other program participants;
- Refuses to return excessive money charged to employer
- Requires confidential arbitration in a foreign venue if an
employer participant wants to sue.
If you are an employer in California or New York, participated
in Applied Underwriters' EquityComp or SolutionOne program from
2006 to the present, and are interested in discussing this class
action, please contact Glen Abramson at firstname.lastname@example.org or 215-875-4683
or Michael Twersky at email@example.com or
Do I have
to pay to consult with an attorney? No.
We are happy to talk with you about your potential claims free
of charge. If we decide to represent you in a lawsuit, we will
enter into a written contingent fee agreement with you. A
contingent fee agreement means we advance all the costs of the
litigation, we only get paid if we win, and we will receive our
fees from the amount paid by the Defendant in the case.