Washington, DC — The District’s insurance regulator and exchange director today encourage residents to watch out for scam artists trying to take advantage of you while shopping for health insurance on the city’s new online marketplace, DC Health Link, opening Oct 1.
Since the passage of the 2010 federal health reform law, scam artists continue to look for ways to defraud consumers by stealing personal information or charging for fake services. The DC Department of Insurance, Securities and Banking and the DC Health Benefit Exchange Authority are committed to protecting District residents and small businesses from insurance fraud.
“We’re committed to seeing DC Health Link bring quality health insurance to people who have never been able to afford it before,” said William P. White, commissioner of the department. “We’re equally committed, in coordination with DC Health Link, to ensure none of these people are robbed while trying to provide insurance for themselves and their families. Our message to scam artists is: ‘We will find you.’”
“DC Health Link is committed to preventing scams, fraud and abuse,” said Mila Kofman, JD, executive director of the DC Health Benefit Exchange Authority. “We will work hand-in-hand with DISB, the Federal Trade Commission and appropriate law enforcement agencies to educate consumers and identify and help shut down scams.”
Your best defense against scams is to be informed and know the signs of a scam. The department advises you to protect your personal, financial or health information and hang up on unsolicited callers trying to sell you insurance.
Don’t be fooled by fake websites or offers to sign you up early. There is only one official website for DC Health Link, www.DCHealthLink.com. For individuals and families, open enrollment through DCHealthLink.com begins Oct. 1 and runs until Mar. 31, 2014.
To view more exchange fraud prevention tips, visit disb.dc.gov/exchangefraud.
In the District, the Department of Insurance, Securities and Banking regulates insurance and compiles evidence to prosecute insurance fraud. Today, with the Kansas insurance department, the department will represent the states as chairs of the National Association of Insurance Commissioners’ anti-fraud committee at an important meeting convened by the Federal Trade Commission to coordinate the fight against fraud. Director Kofman will speak at this important national meeting to combat health insurance marketplace fraud.
If someone makes a suspicious overture to you about buying health insurance, please report it to the department’s consumer services division at (202) 727-8000, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit our website at disb.dc.gov to file a complaint.