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The 191st General Court of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts

Section 47: Misrepresentations, etc. concerning society or contract

Section 47. No person shall cause or permit to be made, issued or circulated in any form—

(a) Any misrepresentation or false or misleading statement concerning the terms, benefits or advantages of any fraternal insurance contract now issued or to be issued in the commonwealth, or the financial condition of any society;

(b) Any false or misleading estimate or statement concerning the dividends or shares of surplus paid or to be paid by any society on any insurance contract; or

(c) Any incomplete comparison of an insurance contract of one society with an insurance contract of another society or insurer for the purpose of inducing the lapse, forfeiture or surrender of any insurance contract. A comparison of insurance contracts is incomplete if it does not compare in detail—

(1) The gross rates, and the gross rates less any dividend or other reduction allowed at the date of the comparison; and

(2) Any increase in cash values, and all the benefits provided by each contract for the possible duration thereof as determined by the life expectancy of the insured; or if it omits from consideration—

(3) Any benefit or value provided in the contract;

(4) Any differences as to amount or period of rates; or

(5) Any differences in limitations or conditions or provisions which directly or indirectly affect the benefits.

In any determination of the incompleteness or misleading character of any comparison or statement, it shall be presumed that the insured had no knowledge of any of the contents of the contract involved.

Any person who violates any provision of this section or knowingly receives any compensation or commission by or in consequence of such violation, shall be punished by a fine not less than one hundred dollars nor more than five hundred dollars or by imprisonment for not less than thirty days nor more than one year, or by both such fine and imprisonment; and shall, in addition, be liable in the amount of three times the sum received by such violator as compensation or commission, which may be sued for and recovered by any person or society aggrieved for his or its own use and benefit in an action of tort.