Allianz Life Responds to Suit Involving Agent Oversight Questions

People working over legal papers in a law office

Allianz Life Insurance Co. of North America asserts that, under California law, it has no duty to act as a fiduciary for an insured and is not subject to a professional standard of care.

The company made those points in a demurrer filed recently in a California state court in Los Angeles County.

Allianz Life was responding to a suit filed by Layne Kramer and a Kramer family trust. Kramer says the insurer should have warned her after her former insurance agent, David Neuman, was convicted of embezzling benefit payments from another client and left the company.

“Allianz Life intends to vigorously defend itself from these allegations,” a company representative said. “It should be noted the agent in question was not affiliated with Allianz Life at the time of his alleged wrongdoings.”

Representatives for Kramer and Neuman did not respond to a request for comment.

The history: Kramer and a Kramer family trust say in their complaint that Neuman tied up assets Kramer needed to pay for her elderly mother’s care by selling her non-variable indexed annuities in 2014.

In 2018, after Neuman was convicted of embezzlement and left Allianz Life, he continued to help Kramer with financial matters, and he had her make him the trustee of a trust.

Neuman took $330,000 of Kramer’s annuity assets by changing the mailing address of the trust to his home address, according to Kramer’s complaint.

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