Indictments returned on title insurance investigation
Owners accused of theft of $733,000
DENVER (August 13, 2018) – On June 7, 2018, the state grand jury in Denver returned a 14-count indictment charging Elizabeth Williams and Michelle Hernandez, who were the owners of two companies, Williams Title Guaranty and Escrow and Foresight Title. Williams and Hernandez are accused of the theft of $733,000 of funds that should have been placed in trust for their policyholders.
What began as an investigation by the Colorado Division of Insurance (DOI), part of the Department of Regulatory Agencies (DORA), grew to include other State departments and will be prosecuted by the Colorado Attorney General’s Office.
The DOI began investigating these title insurance companies in the spring of 2016 and revoked the licenses of the two principles, Williams and Hernandez, in September 2017. As part of the investigation, the DOI discovered alleged unemployment benefits fraud and various tax irregularities, prompting the Division to notify the State’s Department of Labor and Employment and the Department of Revenue. As part of the DOI’s actions, consumers who were impacted recovered their losses from Alliant National Title Insurance Company, which stepped in to help consumers.
“Trouble pops up in all professions from time to time, and insurance is no different,” said Interim Insurance Commissioner Michael Conway. “Yet thanks to our investigative team, not only were we able to stop these people in the world of title insurance, but we built a solid case of facts and information that the other departments and the Attorney General’s office could pursue to get these indictments returned.”
The case is scheduled for a hearing in Denver district court this month.
The Colorado Division of Insurance (DOI), part of the Department of Regulatory Agencies (DORA) regulates the insurance industry and assists consumers and other stakeholders with insurance issues. Visit dora.colorado.gov/insurance for more information or call 303-894-7499 / toll free 800-930-3745.
DORA is dedicated to preserving the integrity of the marketplace and is committed to promoting a fair and competitive business environment in Colorado. Consumer protection is our mission. Visit dora.colorado.gov for more information or call 303-894-7855 / toll free 1-800-886-7675.