A British Columbia independent agent, Pamela Peen Hong Yee, has lost her license to sell insurance and has been ordered to pay over $27,000 in fines, investigation and hearing costs.
Following a January hearing, requested by the licensee to dispute an earlier decision, the Insurance Council of British Columbia (Council) announced in June that it has revoked her life accident and sickness insurance agent’s license until June 2021.
In the Council’s hearing committee report, it is alleged that Yee made material misstatements on a life insurance application, made misrepresentations to the insurer about previously purchased policies in place, processed an electronic life insurance application without a client’s consent, then improperly tried to influence the client to keep the policy even after they declined to proceed. Among other things, Yee allegedly berated the client for being inconsiderate and not thinking about others’ feelings when the client declined to take the insurance.
Allegedly offered to pay the client’s policy premiums
It was also alleged that Yee offered to pay the client’s policy premiums in order to maintain her commission from the insurer. Yee purchased a condo during the material period. One issue debated in the hearing was whether she had encouraged her client to keep the new policy in order to prove her income for her mortgage lender. Yee’s unnamed managing general agency concluded after its investigation that it did not find any evidence of rebating or compensation manipulation.
Yee was first licensed as a life agent with the Council in 2000. This is the third occasion on which she has come before Council on disciplinary matters. Previously she was fined $1,600 for failing to maintain errors and omissions insurance. One year later, she was disciplined for failing to identify a material misstatement on an application for insurance, for failing to maintain proper client files and for failing to complete her continuing education courses for a three-year period. In addition to a $3,000 fine, it was ordered that Yee should be supervised by a qualified agent for 24 months. Yee was already under that supervision when the most recent events occurred.
“She has unfortunately come before Council on a number of recent occasions and the events in question in this matter occurred when the Licensee was already under a supervision order,” say the hearing committee report’s authors. “Even though this matter related to the Licensee’s interactions with only one client, the Hearing Committee has concluded that the misconduct is serious and that a significant disciplinary penalty is warranted.”