The Trump Organization — the family business led, in part, by former President Donald Trump — could end up in legal hot water yet again over an insurance fraud scandal revealed this week by Rolling Stone. In short, sources for the publication have alleged that the Trump Organization filed an insurance claim for damages to a golf course in Westchester County, New York, that vastly overstated the actual cost of undertaking repairs to the course after a certain bout of stormy weather. The claim wasn’t just a little bit off, either — Trump’s company sought a nearly $1.3 million payout to cover repairs that ended up costing around $130,000 to $150,000, according to the new allegations.
The original storm affected the Trump National Golf Club Westchester in Briarcliff Manor, New York, in 2011. This property was recently reported to be under investigation by local District Attorney Mimi Rocah over the possibility that the Trump company had fraudulently represented the value of the property in order to get out of paying higher taxes. The potential criminal acts mirror those that have driven a separate criminal investigation of the Trump Organization that involves New York Attorney General Letitia James and Manhattan-area District Attorney Cy Vance. Although an investigation into other issues remains ongoing, that other case already culminated in criminal charges against the Trump company and its chief financial officer, Allen Weisselberg. The charges relate to a years-long scheme to avoid paying taxes on executive benefits.
As for the insurance situation, Insurance Business America summarizes how one of the sources for Rolling Stone “added that superficial repairs were made to the damaged portions of the golf course, and that the repair work was not even completed.” The other source “explained that the insurer withheld a portion of the payout because the Trump Organization failed to show the required receipts,” as that outlet also summarizes. It’s unclear who the insurer actually was, because the Trump Organization has handled its insurance needs for that course through a brokerage called Aon.
Predictably, the Trump Organization has resisted allegations of any improper behavior, with a company spokesperson self-confidently insisting that the “insurance claim at issue was amicably resolved more than a decade ago following a series of well-chronicled storms across Westchester County that dumped more than five inches of rain on the Village of Briarcliff Manor causing extensive damage and flooding at the golf course and surrounding areas.” Trump’s self-confidence didn’t help his company avoid serious criminal charges in the Vance probe, though. Read more at this link.