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Janet Gutman, T/D/B/A World Insurance Auto Tags v. Department of Transportation

March 18, 2011

JANET GUTMAN, T/D/B/A WORLD INSURANCE AUTO TAGS, PETITIONER
v.
DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION, RESPONDENT



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Rochelle S. Friedman, Senior Judge

Submitted: January 28, 2011

BEFORE: HONORABLE BERNARD L. McGINLEY, Judge HONORABLE P. KEVIN BROBSON, Judge HONORABLE ROCHELLE S. FRIEDMAN, Senior Judge

OPINION BY SENIOR JUDGE FRIEDMAN

Janet Gutman, t/d/b/a World Insurance Auto Tags (Gutman), petitions for review of the September 9, 2010, order of the Secretary of the Department of Transportation (Secretary), which denied Gutman's exceptions and adopted the Department of Transportation's (DOT) proposed report, making final Gutman's termination by DOT's Bureau of Motor Vehicles (BMV) for fraudulent recordkeeping.

We affirm.

Gutman entered into an agreement to provide agent services for the issuance and processing of vehicle registration documents and fees with DOT (Agent Services Agreement or Agreement). (Findings of Fact, No. 1.) The BMV was responsible for overseeing and monitoring Gutman's performance of the Agreement. (Findings of Fact, No. 2.) The BMV conducted an audit of Gutman's office on November 12, 2009, and inspected Gutman's files for the previous three years.

(Findings of Fact, Nos. 3-4.) The audit revealed that, in twenty-nine transactions, Gutman accepted as proof of identity non-government-issued identifications, altered identifications and an international license. (Findings of Fact, No. 5.)

On November 30, 2009, the BMV sent Gutman a notice terminating her Agent Services Agreement. (Findings of Fact, No. 6.) On January 8, 2010, the BMV held a meeting with Gutman to discuss the results of the audit and allow Gutman to present any mitigating circumstances. (Findings of Fact, No. 7.) By letter mailed February 8, 2010, the BMV notified Gutman that the termination would stand. (Findings of Fact, No. 8.) Gutman appealed the termination of her Agreement, and DOT held a hearing on April 6, 2010. (Findings of Fact, No. 9.)

DOT set forth the following findings from the testimony and exhibits that were presented:

a. The Agent Services Agreement contained provisions requiring that employees engaged in providing agent services receive regular training.

b. Since at least 2006, the Bureau's periodic bulletins and training materials for agent services have included information on the requirements for customer addresses and acceptable proof-of-identification documents.

c. According to the bulletins and training materials, agents may not issue motor vehicle documents to an out-of- state address, and non-government issued identification is not acceptable proof of identification.

d. Gutman knew that agents could not issue motor vehicle documents to an out-of-state address and that non- government issued identification was not acceptable proof of identification.

e. Gutman's records contained non-government issued identification in 29 transactions in which the customer purported ...


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