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Liberty National Life Insurance gears up for hiring binge as it fends off state regulators

Liberty National Life Insurance Co. plans to hire at least 100 more agents in the Tampa Bay area and others throughout Florida next week in what the Texas company calls the most aggressive ramp-up in its 109-year history.

There's one side issue jobseekers should be aware of: Florida insurance regulators have threatened to suspend or revoke the company's license.

As part of its Aug. 19 "We're Hiring Day," Liberty says it intends to hire 2,500 agents nationwide in a single day, staging events at 125 locations across the country, including three sites in the bay area and venues in Orlando and south Florida.

"Sales year over year have been going up substantially," spokesman Andrew Coutavas said. "We're really in a growth mode now."

The average annual pay for a first-year agent is $61,000, he said.

Area interviews will be held at three locations: Quorum Hotel, 700 N Westshore Blvd., Tampa; St. Petersburg Marriott Clearwater, 12600 Roosevelt Blvd., St. Petersburg; and Hilton Garden Inn, 3839 Don Emerson Dr., Lakeland. For more details, go to www.lnlcareers.com.

Currently, the company has approximately 600 to 700 agents in Florida, including 100 in the Tampa Bay area. It has about 182,000 policies statewide.

In June, however, state regulators warned that Liberty could lose its license in the wake of a five-month investigation into alleged discrimination against some consumers seeking policies.

Investigators with the Florida Office of Insurance Regulation said they found 1,149 violations in reviewing more than 7,000 life insurance applications at Liberty's former Birmingham, Ala., headquarters. The company has since relocated its headquarters to McKinney, Tex.

Liberty has filed to air its case before the state Division of Administrative Hearings.

Liberty National Life Insurance gears up for hiring binge as it fends off state regulators 08/12/09 [Last modified: Thursday, August 13, 2009 1:05pm]

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