The Financial Services Regulatory Authority of Ontario (FSRA) announced that it has refused a license to former agent, Vineet Anand, after Anand admitted to making his own father the beneficiary of an elderly client’s product.
In addition to accepting Anand’s undertaking to never apply for a license in Ontario again, the regulator also fined Anand $10,000 for failing to disclose the conflict of interest.
Anand’s license expired in February 2023, at which time he applied for renewal. According to the minutes of settlement and undertaking, Anand’s father, Vinod Anand is also licensed as a life, accident and sickness insurance agent.
Two clients, a husband and wife identified only as GU and EU in the minutes, were longstanding insurance clients of Vinod Anand. In June 2019 EU died, leaving GU, 92 years old at the time, living in an assisted living home. The owner of a non-registered segregated fund policy with a total death benefit worth approximately $275,000 when she died, EU had named GU as her beneficiary.
In October 2019, Vineet Anand submitted an application to transfer the funds to a new policy identifying GU as the owner, the successor owner, the estate of GU as the beneficiary and Vinod Anand as the annuitant. Later that month, a beneficiary amendment changed the beneficiary designation to benefit the estate of Vinod Anand.
“Vineet states that Vinod and his estate were made the annuitant and beneficiary of the GU policy after careful consideration with GU,” the minutes state. “GU’s daughters subsequently learned how Vineet had structured the GU policy. They took steps to terminate the GU policy and transferred the funds to a different Empire Life non-registered segregated fund policy owned by GU.”
Anand admitted to the facts contained in the minutes and undertaking. “As a result of this non-compliance, Anand admits that he is not suitable to be licensed under the (Insurance) Act.”