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Calif. blocks PacifiCare dividend payment
Modern Healthcare

California Insurance Commissioner Steve Poizner has issued an order blocking PacifiCare Life & Health Insurance Co. from paying its parent company, UnitedHealth Group, a $120 million dividend, saying the insurer might need the funds to pay state penalties related to alleged claims violations. UnitedHealth Group acquired PacificCare in 2005 for $8 billion. Since then, the state has been investigating provider and consumer complaints regarding claims handling. The state charged PacifiCare with nearly one million violations, each subject to penalties of up to $10,000. The issue is pending before an administrative law judge.