A former Padres pitcher and San Diego native has filed a lawsuit in Los Angeles, claiming that Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance fraudulently duped him into signing up for a life-insurance policy that had a $600,000 annual premium, beyond what he could pay.
Kevin Correia, a graduate of Grossmont High in El Cajon, and his wife Diana Lynn, claim that his former financial advisor Bill Clay Crafton Jr. and Massachusetts Life agent Christopher Turoci encouraged him to purchase a $22.7 million life insurance policy in 2013, when Correia was serving a two-year stint with the Minnesota Twins.
"The annual premium for this policy was a whopping $608,846.01, which had to be paid annually for 10 years," the Correias' complaint alleges.
"This case presents a textbook example of how a life insurance company (Mass Mutual) takes advantage of professional athletes by selling excessive whole life insurance policies that require the payment of exorbitant premiums that the athlete is unlikely to be able to pay over time."
After a six-year run with the San Francisco Giants from 2003–2008, Correia bounced from the Padres (2009–'10) to the Pittsburgh Pirates (2011–'12), Twins (2013–'14, and Los Angeles Dodgers (2014). After failing to catch on with the Seattle Mariners in spring training and with a second Giants stint in the minor leagues, he signed with the Philadelphia Phillies on Monday (June 8).
The $608,000 insurance premium represents more than 93 percent of the $650,000 annual contract Correia signed with the Phillies.
The family's suit calls the policy they were sold "excessive, ill-advised, and inappropriate.
"In July 2013, K. Correia was 33 years old, and had a wife and two young children. It was highly unlikely K. Corriea would earn sufficient income to pay $608,846 in premiums every year for the next ten years, particularly given that he was in the last years of his baseball career."
The suit claims that Turoci is believed to have pocketed "a substantial portion of the first year’s premium" as a sales commission, and that Mass Mutual knew, or should have known, that Correia was likely to face a point at which he'd be unable to pay the massive premium and would be forced to cash in the policy for a fraction of what he'd paid to date.
The Correias, represented by Gregory Aldisert of Los Angeles, seek restitution in addition to compensatory and punitive damages from all parties involved in the alleged scheme.