Yes it involves the Title Insurance industry but it's a very close parallel to what has occurred in the structured settlement industry over the last 20 years. It makes interesting reading.
What is striking about this latest salvo against the brokerage and insurance industry by New York AG Eliot Spitzer is that once again he is looking at the undisclosed nature of the rebates, sales inducements and royalties often paid to large brokers and providers of insurance coverage.
It's not the structured settlement industry yet, but with the Travelers and Hartford class actions in Connecticut raising the profile of this issue, i'm afraid it's only a matter of time before this goes up on the radar of AG's around the country. The sooner the practice is curtailed and eliminated, in what ever form it takes, the better it will be for our industry.
I have long contended that if all we can do to gain an edge over our competition is to provide a rebate/shared commission then we are nothing but a commodity and will ultimately be squeezed out of the transaction by lower cost producers or people choosing to buy the product direct. We devalue our services in this fashion at our own peril and risk to our long term prosperity.