Jimmy Patronis, Florida’s Chief Financial Officer (CFO) Continued

The Office of Financial Regulations doesn’t regulate the Business of Insurance.  They do, however, maintain an open line of communication with Florida’s other regulatory entities.  To give you an idea of what the OFR does, let’s take a moment to talk about how they recently stuck it to Mr. James Harold Hosner, for being a Senior Scamming Douche.  


After we talk about the Hosner case, we’ll briefly revisit the OFR to discuss their regulatory powers.  After that – POOF they’re gone like discussions about the Governors Cabinet.


The Office of Financial Regulations doesn’t play a bigger role in this course because, they focus exclusively on financial matters and… This is an insurance course.  We’re going to spend our time discussing the Office of Insurance Regulations since, they work with insurers and other types of entities, we transfer risk too.

  • Office of Financial Regulations (OFR)

VIOLATION: Palm Harbor Man Guilty in Promissory Note Scheme


On February 13th of 2020, a jury in Pinellas County Florida found James Harold Hosner guilty, for his role in a promissory note scheme which targeted one of his elderly clients.  


James was convicted on,


  • securities fraud, 
  • selling unregistered securities, 
  • selling securities as an unregistered person, and 
  • communications fraud (scheme to defraud) 


In a press release, Alex Toledo, Acting Chief of Financial Investigations for the Office of Financial Regulations said, 


  • “Fighting financial fraud is our top priority. Vicious schemes that target our state’s elder population must be stopped. I appreciate the diligent work of the Pinellas County State Attorney’s Office and *OFR’s investigators in securing this positive outcome for the people of Florida.”


According to the case file, an investigation into Hosner’s actions was opened in May of 2018 because of a referral from the Department of Financial Services’ Division of Insurance Agent & Agency Services. 


  • [NOTE] Regulatory Collaboration – *DFS Referral


Hosner, an insurance agency owner from the Pinellas County over near the Clearwater Beach peninsula was found guilty of completely exploiting his *Position of Trust by selling at least three (3) phony promissory notes, totaling approximately $48,500 to this elderly insurance client.   

As the story goes, Hosner told his client that he was going to buy another agency and the money she was investing was safe with a fixed 7% return.  To sweeten the deal and make the transaction seem less risky, the victim was reassured that her money could be returned at any time, upon request.


  • Not that it matters but, no part of James Hosner’s story was true.  


He lied about plans to purchase another insurance agency and instead, used portions of the victim’s money to pay insurance premiums and cover his existing payroll.


Now, you have an idea of what the Office of Financial Regulations does so, back to Jimmy Patronis, Florida’s CFO and **HEAD of the Department of Financial Services # (DFS).  Did you know, the *DFS is home to 13 different state officesSix (6) of those 13 entities have a direct role in the regulating the business of insurance.


The Office of Financial Regulations and the Office of Insurance Regulations fall under the authority/supervision of the Financial Services Commission (OR Commission), which like the Governors Cabinet, the CFO is a part of.   

  • Connecting the Dots.
  • The CFO is a member or the Governors Cabinet & Financial Services Commission.


  • The Financial Services Commission supervises the Office of Financial Regulation (OFR) and the Office of Insurance Regulation (OIR).  


  • The CFO is head the Department of Financial Services.


To simplify things, let’s draw a parallel between the Chief Financial Officer of a large company and the responsibilities of Florida’s CFO, Jimmy Patronis.


It’s typical for any CFO to audit the soundness of their company’s investments.  Jimmy Patronis audits Florida’s investments as well as our deferred compensation programs and state hosted Risk Management programs.


  • To understand why the Florida’s CFO with all of his insurance responsibilities also handles matters pertaining to *Unclaimed Property, think about the needs of a beneficiary.  


Life insurance benefits could easily qualify as unclaimed property if the beneficiary weren’t notified of the insureds passing. 

Some years back prior to Patronis, Florida’s CFO pushed insurers to use the same amount of effort to find a life insurance beneficiary as they do to identify when an annuitant who is receiving payments dies.

Being in charge of the Department of Financial Services, makes the CFO personally responsible for every class of insurance and annuity sold in the State of Florida – (GO GATORS).     

End Topic [FS: 20.121]


  • Quick side-conversation with some relevant info sprinkled in.  


A good portion of insurance industry study manuals and Continuing Education courses and regulatory publications reference *The Insurance Code.


OK Google… “What is The Insurance Code?


I went to Google for the definition of the insurance code because I was 26 chapters into the state pre-licensing textbook when this new term was thrown into the mix without clarification.  The book references the Insurance Agents Code of Ethics.  How could I have missed the insurance code.  


How many codes do I need to know? 

The answer was so basic, it became complicated until I asked the right question.  

everywhere for a definition of this “Insurance Code” and it blew my mind how industry insiders decided it was ok to reference this so called “Code” without even attempting to explain what the heck they were talking about!?!?  


I was lost.


Anyway… enough of my emotional baggage.  

What was the question I needed to ask?  

[Define] Code.


Let’s clarify any Insurance Code confusion you might have.  The term *Insurance Code is simply another way of referring to the *Rules and state *Laws which give the CFO and the State Offices he oversees their *Authority to efficiently regulate Florida’s entire insurance marketplace.  


We all start our insurance careers as rookies.  I transitioned into the insurance industry as a sales & marketing entrepreneur.  The only legal talk I was exposed to was either in traffic court or associated with banking. 

My lack of experience with legal lingo and the matters associated with those type of conversations meant; it was sometimes difficult to wrap my head around even the simple concepts.  I’d hate for that to happen to you so; I did my best to define as much vocabulary and concepts as possible.  


Moving on, I’m assuming you’ve noticed I use the heck out of the word *Authority and his big sister *AUTHORIZED.  To say our use of the word “Authorization” is important, is a gross understatement.  Almost this entire course is focused on some aspect of Authorization and maintaining minimum standards.  


  • For EXAMPLE, 

If you were to sell insurance, ANY type of insurance – With/Out the proper *Authorization, the Departments (DFS) Investigators are actually sworn-in law enforcement officers who pack heat.  They have the *Authority to question and detain (arrest) you so, it’s a good idea to comply when the DFS Investigators come knocking.


In the business of insurance, the word *Authorized means, you’re properly licensed and have active *Appointments which give you permission to legally offer policies from the *Insurer(s) you represent to the public marketplace.  


Insurance isn’t like other industries, let’s compare it with real estate for example.  Once a *Realtor is licensed to conduct the business of real estate, they can sell ANY home listed on the market as available.  If a *Realtor finds a buyer who closes on a listed property, the agent qualifies to receive a commission.  Regardless of who listed the property for sale.  




  • Let’s say you’re licensed and appointed with Flo at Progressive.  Your prospect likes the way you’ve presented things and wants you to be their agent.  The only problem is the policy they feel best suits their needs is offered by Mayhem at Allstate, an insurer you don’t represent.  


IF you were to collaborate with your insurance industry friends, give your client EXACTLY what they wanted and managed talk the Mayhem agent into splitting commissions with you… you’d be considered an UN-AUTHORIZED Entity which is a FELONY!  


Thereafter, you might as well be an insurance industry terrorist.     

Insurance Insights | News You Can Use 



CFO Jimmy Patronis said, “As your CFO, I will continue to fight fraud and hold those accountable who commit crimes that drive up the cost of insurance for Florida families. I applaud the hard work of my fraud detectives and the continued dedication of Miami-Dade State Attorney Katherine Fernandez Rundle for ensuring serial fraudsters are brought to justice.”

  • PRESS RELEASE: Tuesday, March 9, 2021

CFO Jimmy Patronis Announces Second Arrest of Former Miami Insurance Agent for Alleged Unlicensed Activity

MIAMI – Today, Chief Financial Officer (CFO) Jimmy Patronis announced the second arrest of Orestes Valentin Rodriguez, a former licensed insurance agent for allegedly selling insurance without a license. 


  • Rodriguez’s insurance agent license was surrendered and revoked under a Department Settlement Stipulation for Consent Order in 2018


The following investigation uncovered the details of a fraud scheme.  Apparently, Rodriguez stole over $620,000 in client premiums and was arrested in March of 2019.  Since Rodriguez was no longer *Trustworthy, the DFS forbidden him to engage in any business transaction where a license or appointment was required

  • Pursuant to the Florida Insurance Code


Some people will never learn.  DFS Investigators followed-up on Rodriguez and discovered he was still profiting from his scheme.  After his license was revoked – after he was arrested, Rodriguez went back to the bank and collected $38,700 insurance premium checks.  These premiums were related to rental property renewal coverages. 


  • To obtain the funds from the bank, Rodriguez provided a fraudulent Certificate of Insurance document as proof of renewal coverage. 





LUCKILY… A bank representative had come across the CFO’s press release talking about Rodriguez’s arrest.  The Miami-Dade State Attorney’s Office (SAO) was notified that Rodriguez had transacted insurance business with the bank after his arrest. 

The SAO then notified the Florida Department of Financial Services’ Bureau of Insurance Fraud (BIF) of the new allegation.  On February 25, 2021, Rodriguez was arrested by BIF detectives and transported to Miami jail (TGK). If convicted, he faces up to 55 years in prison


Rodriguez is charged with,

  • Ten (10) counts of transacting insurance without a license


  • one count of organized scheme to defraud. 


The Department is asking for the public’s help in identifying any insurance transaction by Rodriguez and his business, Blue Guard Insurance Group Inc., after his revocation. If anyone has conducted business with Orestes Valentin Rodriguez after January 2019, please call the DFS Fraud Hotline at 1-800-378-0445.



[Note] About CFO Jimmy Patronis

Every press release and CFO announcement contains the following statement.


Chief Financial Officer and State Fire Marshal Jimmy Patronis is a statewide *Elected Official and a member of Florida’s Cabinet who oversees the Department of Financial Services. 


CFO Patronis works each day to fight insurance fraud, support Florida’s firefighters, and ensure the state’s finances are stable to support economic growth in the state. Follow the activities of the Department on Facebook (FLDFS) and Twitter (@FLDFS).

Continuing Education

You’re not reading this because, you love insurance Law and Professional Ethics discussions.  


You’re here complying with Florida’s minimum standards for maintaining an insurance license.  Everyone is required to complete 24 hours of Continuing Education every two years unless they’ve been licensed for over 6-years.  Those licensees with 6+ Year of experience under their belt only need to complete 20 hours of CE.


Regardless of how long you’ve been in the industry, we’re all required to complete 5-Hours of studies focused on exclusively Law & Ethics.  The only flexibility we Insurance Education Providers have lies with how we convey the information.  


Speaking of stories, check out this torturous injustice.  

I’m not allowed to do CE with any of the entities I write for so, like everyone else who doesn’t use us yet, I do CE with other schools.  What a complete drag.  

This Law & Ethics course is the only one that requires me to reference laws and violations yet, it felt like every one of the courses I purchased from other schools pushed the same type of “Big Brother” or, a “you’re being watched” vibe.  


Is the insurance industry highly regulated?  



On Flip Side, the out to get us vibe education providers are pushing out there, in my experience, couldn’t be further from the truth.  The CFO & his Department of Financial Services is a terrific ally who’ve adopted a very efficient “Don’t want no problems, won’t be no problems” philosophy.  


What I mean by that is, the Chief Financial Officer and his DFS would much rather spend their time focused on ways to grow our state economy opposed to babysitting marketplace transactions.   


  • Did you know… Both, the CFO’s Department of Financial Services & the Office of Insurance Regulation are responsible for recruiting NEW Insurers to the Florida marketplace?  


I don’t know where they get the time because, the FBI estimates insurance fraud to be a $40 Billion, that’s BILLION with a B – A 40 BILLION Dollar a year full-time problem.  What’s even crazier is, the FBI’s numbers DON’T even include health insurance fraud!  


If we do the math on just the 1st $40 BILLION Dollars of insurance fraud, it equates to roughly, as much as $500 dollars in yearly policy premium increases to offset losses.  


Wouldn’t it be awesome if we could discuss some fluffy statistics showing how we were winning the battle against Fraud?  Unfortunately, criminals are relentless and their’s no solution in sight.   Since it’s impossible to eradicate criminal intent without a magic lamp and the All-Powerful Genie that lives in it, regulators rely on us licensed professionals to *selfregulate.    


  • Let’s flashback for a moment and recall how we’ve been conditioned to behave since the 911 tragedy.  


If we witness something suspicious, we should feel the social responsibility to report it to law enforcement, right?  Well, if you have an insurance license and you witness suspicious or illegal activities, you’re REQUIRED by law to report it.  


We’ll dive more into our “See Something, Say Something” responsibility in a moment.  Right now, we’re going to talk trash about a few guys who thought they found an easy way to beat the system.

  • 2020 Press Release

Thursday, February 20th, 2020


The Florida CFO Jimmy Patronis announces the arrest of Four Suspects behind a Two Hundred & Thirty Thousand Dollar ($230,000) Insurance Fraud Scheme in Tampa.


  • “Fraud has reached epidemic proportions in Florida and scams like this driveup auto rates for every driver on the road. I’m thankful for the hard work of my fraud detectives in tracking these fraudsters down. We must continue to work together to do everything we can to uncover these fraud schemes and bring these scam artists to justice.”
  • CFO Jimmy Patronis


This story is about four brothers started staging minor traffic accidents at gas stations in June of 2016 and continued until April of 2019.  Since their last name is Salti, we’re going to refer to them as the Salti Crime Family. 


The cars the Salti’s were claiming to be damaged were in fact, not damaged at all.  Over three years, they pocketed approximately $230,000 from the fraudulent invoices they submitted to their insurance companies for repairs.


  • These 4-Banditos were all arrested and booked on Racketeering and Conspiracy to Commit Racketeering charges.  


You may be asking, “How serious is this violation?”  Well, bail set at $1.2 million dollars each and, if convicted, they each face up to 30 years in prison… OUCH


They would have gotten away with the money if it wasn’t for the Florida CFO and his meddling investigators from the DFS’s Division of Forensic & Investigative Services.”  


How important is the Florida CFO?

Every single press release identifies CFO responsibilities.

  • State Fire Marshal 
  • Elected Official 
  • Member of Florida’s Cabinet who 
  • Oversees the Department of Financial Services.
  • Ensures the state’s finances are stable to support economic growth in the state.

CFO’s Fraud Free Florida 


Have you ever heard the expression, “The right hand doesn’t know what the left hand is doing”?  Typically, this expression simply pertains to breakdowns in communication which is exactly what you don’t want to happen during a criminal investigation.


It would be unreasonable to think regulators could completely eliminate crimes like *Fraud and *Identity Theft from happening however, in 2018, The Sunshine State locked down the #1 spot.  


NO… We weren’t the best.


Floridians reported more instances of fraud than all other states in the country… and that’s just the beginning!  We also ranked third #3 in the US for having the most reported instances of identity theft.  


Seriously people… I’m going to drive this point home throughout the entire course.  It’s 2020, not having a comprehensive Identity Theft strategy in place is blatantly irresponsible.  


Let that sink in for a few seconds.


Although these statistics are alarming, I’m in no way throwing shade on the regulatory efforts of the CFO & his Department.  In fact, Florida’s has one of the most respected marketplaces in the country.  


For instance, Florida is known for Hurricanes and after one passes, unlicensed contractors come out of the woodwork.  To protect homeowners and combat contractor fraud after disasters, the DFS created the “Disaster Fraud Action Strike Team” (DFAST) and the “Fraud Free Florida” initiative.


 “Fraud Free Florida” is the CFO’s acknowledgement of the fact, law enforcement needs to evolve as fast as criminals and for that to happen, communication needs to be seamless.  


This NEW initiative focuses on *Cyber Security and crimes like; *Identify theft, *Public Assistance Fraud and the Opioid Epidemic.  Basically, the CFO created a way for all the different law enforcement agencies throughout the state to collaborate efficiently.  


I find the CFO resources incredibly relevant so, I’m going to continue pointing them out.  Hopefully, I’m sparking your interest and you’ll go explore them on your own sometime.


  • NOW… In case you haven’t noticed, we’re not far into this section and I think *Identity Theft has already popped up (2) or three (3) times.  It’s a reoccurring theme throughout this course and I’m determined to drive home the FACT it’s IMPOSSIBLE for you to protect your identities without help. 

More importantly, as an insurance agent, you’re personally responsible and professionally obligated to protect your client’s information.  Impostors aren’t dumpster diving for information anymore.


They’ve learned it’s easier to hack into YOUR network (Phone, computers) and the servers of the small & large companies we interact with.   Let’s forget about the Hundreds of thousands of little breaches that happen to people like us and focus on the 2018 – 2019 Identity Theft Season to recap the MAJOR Breaches you may have not known about.  


Let’s see what I could dig up…

  • Adidas, 
  • Best Buy, 
  • Delta, 
  • K-Mart, 
  • Lord & Taylor’s, 
  • Panera Bread, 
  • Saks Fifth Ave, 
  • Sears and Whole Foods.  


YES… Every one of those companies fell victim to cyber criminals, however, let’s not EVER forget 2017’s Granddaddy of all Cyber Attacks – The Equifax breach.  


Without exaggeration, over 1/3rd of America was compromised.  When I say compromised… I mean everything down to our driver’s license number, mother’s maiden name and even our past residential and employment history.


I am going to throw some serious shade here because, (IF) an insurance agent or agency would have been as careless with client info as Equifax was with ours, we’d be in facing jail time.  


To take things one level deeper, only after the Federal Government got involved did Equifax stop trying to make money off the breach.  You see, Equifax & LifeLock are partners so, they immediately began capitalizing on the relationship and started marketing their Identity Theft protection products to the same people they allowed to be breached!  


When the breach was front-page news, Morgan Wright, a senior official with the US State Department in charge of Cyber Security was on several news outlets talking about the severity of the breach.  When asked about LifeLock in particular and other Identity Theft monitoring services like it, Wright hysterically goes on record by saying how the implementation of subpar monitoring services like LifeLock is the “equivalent of using an eye-dropper to put out a forest fire.” 

To put the Equifax Breach into perspective, LinkedIn was breached a few years prior to Equifax.  The information the hackers got from LinkedIn was nothing in comparison what they stole from Equifax but, regardless – Hackers held onto the identities they stole from LinkedIn for almost four years before they began using them.  


Please understand… The information which identifies you and I as individuals, has been undoubtably stolen.  From here on in, it’s just a matter of time before it’s used by an impostor.  I’m so ticked off these irresponsible douche bags were never prosecuted!  


Insurance Insights | News You Can Use 



“Fraud continues to be a major problem in our state as it impacts the financial well-being of the victim and inflates insurance rates for all Floridians. Having a trusted financial advisor like your insurance agent allegedly steal your banking data and create false information for their own personal gain is inexcusable.  I appreciate the dedication of my fraud detectives to hold fraudsters like this accountable, and we’ll continue working aggressively to fight the type of fraud that impacts consumers’ insurance rates.”

  • CFO Jimmy Patronis

  • PRESS RELEASE: Tuesday, February 16, 2021

CFO Jimmy Patronis Announces Arrest of Miami Insurance Agent in Identity Theft Fraud Scheme


MIAMI Seriously… what’s wrong with you guys?


The Chief Financial Officer (CFO) Jimmy Patronis announced the arrest of Daniela Chacon Labrador of Hialeah.  She was booked on multiple charges, including allegedly stealing personal account information to file false insurance applications. 


  • Labrador, a licensed Life and Health insurance agent, used the applications to collect more than $1,700 in commissions from the Combine Insurance Company of America.


The DFS investigation determined Labrador created and submitted applications for three accident/Illness insurance policies using falsified and fictitious information.  The bank accounts she used were stolen from a client. After all the trouble she went through constructing her scheme, Labrador received approximately $1,789 in commissions from Combine Insurance Company of America.  

Daniela Chacon Labrador surrendered on February 12, 2021.  She was booked into the Miami-Dade County Jail. 

Her charges…

  • Organized scheme to defraud, 
  • False and fraudulent insurance application, 
  • Criminal usage of personal identifying information, 
  • Grand theft.  

all 3rd degree felonies. 


All charges are 3rd Degree Felonies.


The Department has revoked Labrador’s license.  If convicted, she faces up to 40 years in prison.