An insurance agent’s improper fax rampage just cost MetLife $23 million

This is a separate and unrelated fax-rampage.
This is a separate and unrelated fax-rampage.
Image: Reuters/Regis Duvignau
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Financial institutions have been fined for all manner of malfeasance in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis. Now we can add improper faxing to the list of bad behaviors.

The largest insurer in the US has agreed to pay $23 million to settle a pair of class-action lawsuits. At issue were the millions of faxes allegedly sent to unsuspecting consumers and business owners by a former MetLife agent in Florida, who apparently paid a fax-blasting specialty firm to help him blanket his targets. The operation, according to to the complaint, was run from the agent’s Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, offices as well as the nearby homes of some of his assistants. The settlement will cover as many as 2.8 million people who received the unsolicited faxes between 2008 and 2014.

The lawsuit claimed that the faxes—which essentially were advertisements aimed at drumming up sales—violated federal “do not call” laws, according to the Wall Street Journal. The company said in a court filing that it “vigorously disputes the liability,” and is settling the matter to avoid “risks and uncertainties of litigation,” the paper reported.