Regulators are investigating life-insurance sales practices at Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Co., where some customers complained they were misled, the Wall Street Journal reports.
Executives of the Milwaukee-based life insurer confirmed to the WSJ that the NASD is indeed investigating the companay. Executives said the NASD initially contacted the company in April 2001 and asked for a sample of 2,500 policyholders. Since then, NASD has told the company that it is focusing on 20 cases involving two agents, one in Kansas City, Mo. and the other in Indianapolis, according to a company spokesman. However, the company said it has found no problems with the agents' sales.
According to the Nortwestern, one of the two agents involved in the NASD probe, still works with the company while the other left in 2002 because "he was unwilling or unable to comply with internal compliance and supervisory procedures," and not "because of litigation or regulatory concerns."
Paul Heaton, Northwestern Mutual's vice president-litigation counsel, told the WSJ, "Each of the sales in question were perfectly appropriate and well documented." He added that the company is "obviously cooperating with the NASD."
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