Golf Tournament “Insurer” Charged with Fraud after Refusal to Honor Hole-in-One2, Insurance Fraud — By Trace America on May 17, 2012 at 4:04 PM
One Montana man was probably very excited when he won a special prize from a golf tournament back in August of 2010 for sinking a hole-in-one. He’s much less excited now however, because he has yet to receive the money.
According to krtv.com, Troy Peissig shot the hole-in-one at a Missoula Country Club golf tournament, winning himself the $18,000. But despite multiple witness accounts and almost two years, Peissig hasn’t seen a dime of that money.
The sponsor of the tournament purchased insurance to cover the prize payment from Hole-In-Won.com, which is a company that markets itself as “the first golf insurance company on the Internet.”
Seven months after Peissig shot his hole-in-one, however, the company’s CEO, Kevin Kolenda, denied the claim and refused to pay the prize money.
Monica Lindeen, the Montana Commissioner of Securities and Insurance (CSI), has now charged Kolenda with felony insurance fraud and misdemeanor selling insurance without a license.
Court documents that were filed by the CSI allege that Kolenda took almost $1,000 in premiums from the sponsor with no intention of covering the prize.
In his letter to the tournament sponsor denying the claim, Kolenda stated that the hole was too short, which violates the terms of the contract. Kolenda noted the Missoula Country Club’s standard score card, which lists the length of the hole at 130 yards, well below the 165 yards that are required.
On the other side of the argument, in the complaint against Kolenda, the Country Club told investigators that the hole was lengthened for the tournament.
Interviews with witnesses and satellite images support the claim that the hole was long enough on the day of the tournament.
Through his denial of Peissig’s prize money, investigators state that Kolenda has ignored all the witness statements and evidence that were provided by the tournament host.
A warrant for Kolenda’s arrest has been issued by the Missoula District Court at the request of the Commissioner’s office and the Missoula County Attorney.
Back in 2009, Kolenda was fined by the Connecticut Insurance Commissioner over $5.9 million for selling insurance without a license, false representation of insurance products, and unfair insurance practices.
In retaliation it seems, the Hole-In-Won website now carries this message: “the hole-in-one or other prize covered contracts of Hole-in-won, Hole-in-won.com, Hole-in worldwide or Kevin Kolenda are not available in the state of Connecticut or to Connecticut residents”.
Sounds like that tournament sponsor could use a Mulligan.
This post is authored by Trace America.