JPMorgan Reaches Insurance Accord With Mortgage Borrowers

JPMorgan Chase & Co. (JPM) and insurers reached a $300 million settlement with property owners who accused the companies of overcharging for hazard insurance.

JPMorgan, Assurant Inc. (AIZ) and other insurers will pay refunds valued at 12.5 percent of annual premium costs to homeowners who had the policies placed on their properties by the bank starting in January 2008, according to documents filed Sept. 6 in federal court in Miami.

Homeowners covered by the case stand “to recover hundreds, if not thousands, of dollars as a result of the settlement,” lawyers for the plaintiffs said in a memorandum.

JPMorgan, based in New York, was accused of placing mortgage borrowers’ required hazard and wind coverage with Assurant and other insurers at inflated rates, covering costs of kickbacks to a JPMorgan unit.

“The settlement will have no expected impact on our financials,” Amy Bonitatibus, a JPMorgan spokeswoman, said in an e-mailed statement. The insurance agreement at issue was discontinued this year, she said.

Shawn Kahle, a spokeswoman for New York-based Assurant, didn’t immediately respond to an e-mail seeking comment on the settlement.

The case is Saccoccio v. JPMorgan Chase Bank NA, 13-cv-21107, U.S. District Court, Southern District of Florida (Miami).

To contact the reporter on this story: Christie Smythe in federal court in Brooklyn, New York, at csmythe1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Michael Hytha at mhytha@bloomberg.net

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