The Metropolitan Life Insurance Co., New York City, will pay $2.6 million to nearly 30,000 Wisconsin policyholders under a proposed settlement on charges of bias, the Wisconsin Office of the Commissioner of Insurance said Wednesday.
The state’s share is part of a $160 million settlement reached in August involving 1.8 million policies in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. The settlement, signed by the Wisconsin insurance commissioner Connie O’Connell, still requires final federal court approval.
The settlement involved allegations of discriminatory pricing and underwriting practices based on race. It was negotiated through the National Association of Insurance Commissioners.
“This settlement is intended to provide compensation for people who were allegedly charged more for life insurance policies solely on the basis of their skin color,” said O’Connell. The settlement covers policies issued before 1973 and dating back as early as 1901.
Metropolitan Life has agreed to spend $6 million to publicize the settlement across the country.
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