DES MOINES — The Iowa Insurance Division is issuing a cease and desist order against a Pennsylvania-based company called THPCA, also known as Total Home Protection.
Division spokesman Chance McElhaney says the company sold residential service contracts to dozens of Iowans but did not have a license to do so in the state.
“We do license residential service contracts, so what we want to do is make sure Iowans are double-checking to make sure the person and the company they’re dealing with are properly licensed,” McElhaney says. “They can do that by visiting our website, iid.iowa.gov.”
Those contracts typically are an agreement to maintain, repair or replace structural components of a home, appliances or electrical, plumbing, heating, cooling or air-conditioning systems. He says Iowans need to be certain they understand what is — and isn’t — covered before signing a contract for that kind of service.
“That starts by reading the contract and determining the terms of the coverage that’s offered,” McElhaney says. “In that contract, you’ll probably see some exclusions, so you’ll want to know what is not covered as well. Often, there will be a waiting period as well, so you’ll want to take that into consideration when you’re choosing whether or not to purchase this type of coverage.”
The investigation by the state Division uncovered THPCA sold at least 176 residential service contracts in Iowa without a license in the state. It’s still unclear if those Iowa clients will be getting a refund.
“We’re working through that with the Attorney General’s Office right now so there will probably be some further developments on this,” McElhaney says. “Right now, we’re focused on making sure they stop selling here unlicensed and if any other Iowans have purchased this product that we’re unaware of, we want to hear from them.”
Iowans can contact the Iowa Insurance Division at 515-776-0224. The states of Nevada and California have also sanctioned the company.
In addition to THPCA, Iowa’s cease and desist order also names Ronald Seruya of Oakhurst, New Jersey.