Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Where to find information -- and file claims -- re: the American Trade Association

The officials in charge of the liquidation of the American Trade Association, Inc. and several affiliates have set up a website that includes claim forms for unpaid medical bills,

We are aware of dozens and perhaps hundreds of Washingtonians who purchased purported health insurance products from a Tennessee-based company known as the American Trade Association.

We and a number of other states ordered the company to stop selling these illegal products. (Here's our cease-and-desist order, issued in January.)

On May 10, a Tennessee court ordered the liquidation of ATA and several connected entities: American Trade Association LLC, Smart Data Solutions LLC and Serve America Assurance. From the website:

"All policies of insurance or other benefits not previously expired, terminated or replaced by you with other insurance will end at 11:59 P.M. Central Time on May 31, 2010," it says. You can call the liquidator at 1-800-591-6764 for an update and to obtain a "creditable coverage letter," which can be a very important step in finding other coverage that's affordable, particularly if you have pre-existing medical conditions.

There are several key points in the website and recording:
  • Leslie A. Newman, the Tennessee Commissioner of Commerce and Insurance, is developing a liquidation plan for court approval.
  • No claims will be paid until the court approves a payment plan, which Tennessee officials say could take a year.
  • The deadline for filing claims is Aug. 31 at 4:30 p.m. Central Time. And the claims must be received -- not postmarked -- by that date. Here's a copy of the claim form, including the address to send it to.
  • Although some ATA customers have been getting letters telling them that they're being switched to other coverage, neither Newman nor the court have approved any such transfer of coverage.