Florida Senate Bill (SB) 76, which covers a host of property insurance matters, has been promulgated by Governor Ron DeSantis, while a consumer protection bill that will change the requirements for adjusters in the state is expected to be signed soon.
“The Florida property insurance market has been in crisis for years. Besides weather events, bad actors target homeowners and insurance companies. Over the past seven years, insurance companies have paid over $ 15 billion in claims, including over $ 10 billion in attorney fees, ”said State Representative Bob Rommel in a statement. “We have over 1,100 people a day moving to Florida, and we need to make sure consumers have the ability to get affordable insurance policies from private companies and not just from Citizens, which was originally created. as an insurer of last resort. SB 76 will stabilize the market and should attract new insurers to Florida. “
Intent to tackle the cost drivers of litigation and hailed as a law that could save Florida’s economy, the provisions of SB 76 include a requirement for plaintiffs to file a prior claim at least 10 days. before taking legal action against an insurer that includes an estimate of the claim, the attorney’s fees and charges required, as well as the amount in dispute. It also makes it illegal for roofing contractors to solicit a claim from policyholders, according to sister site PropertyCasualty360.com on Insurance Coverage Law Center (ICLC).
Additional provisions state that attorney’s fees are “contingent upon obtaining a judgment for compensation in excess of the prior offer made by the insurance company,” the ICLC reported. Additionally, SB 76 requires that claims be made within two years of the date of the loss and additional claims must be filed within three years of the loss. An insurer may require mediation or ADR after receiving the notice.
The bill also proposes a replacement cost coverage table that takes into account the useful life left on a roof. For example, if a roof is 10 years old, an insurer would use the table to subtract 10 years of useful life from the cost of replacing the roof.
For lawyers, the bill also includes an intention to sue provision that requires plaintiffs’ lawyers to notify their intention to sue. The carrier will then have the option to investigate further or pay for the claim to avoid litigation, according to the ICLC, which has made a decision. dive deep into the provisions of SB 76.
In a statement, Florida Insurance Commissioner David Altmaier commented, “The action builds on the commitment the DeSantis administration has shown since day one to undertake meaningful insurance reforms. that help protect all Floridians by promoting the long term sustainability of the Florida insurance market and keeping our market competitive. Senate Bill 76 Takes Important Steps To Address The Unique Challenges Facing The Florida Property Insurance Market, Address Cost Drivers In The Market, And Help Stabilize Rates For Consumers .
Amendments to the rules of the public expert
Should be promulgated soon, SB 1598 is a bill on consumer protection which, among other things, revises certain rules concerning public claims adjusters.
One provision in the bill would extend the time a consumer has to terminate a contract with a public claims adjuster from three to ten days. In addition, the proposal would require public adjusters to send insurers a detailed estimate, including detailed repair costs, 60 days after contract with an insured.
In addition, the new law would require public adjusters to be licensed by the state and prohibit compensation by contractors or lawyers.
SB 1598 would also require insurance companies to respond promptly to policyholders, pay interest on uncontested payments made 90 days after the date of loss, keep records of adjusters, and notify policyholders of claims. the mission of claims adjuster.