Fireman’s Fund Insurance will pay $44 million to settle allegations under the False Claims Act that it knowingly issued insurance policies that were ineligible under the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) federal crop insurance program. It will also settle allegations that it falsified documents, the Justice Department said.
Federal crop insurance provides support for farmers suffering crop losses due to natural disasters. The Government’s case alleged that Fireman’s Fund offered crop insurance that was reinsured by the USDA for a portion of the risks and the Fund knowingly issued federally reinsured crop insurance policies that were ineligible for federal reinsurance.
Specifically, Fireman’s Fund allegedly backdated policies, forged farmers’ signatures, accepted late and altered documents, whited-out dates and signatures, and signed documents after relevant deadlines. The policies were issued by Fireman’s Fund offices in Modesto, California; Lambert, Mississippi; Fargo, North Dakota; Lubbock, Texas; Prosser, Washington; and Overland Park, Kansas.
Jeffrey Newman represents whistleblowers