The Florida Senate on Friday voted 22-16 for a property insurance bill that could result in homeowners seeking coverage from Citizens to be shifted to a private surplus line insurance company. Surplus line companies are not subjected to the same regulations as companies based in the state.

Several senators objected to the legislation, including Republicans who live in areas with heavy concentrations of customers with the state-created Citizens.

“We have insurance regulation in the state of Florida for a good reason,” said Sen. Jeff Clemens, D-Lake Worth. “It’s to make sure consumers in Florida aren’t being taking advantage of.”

The Senate bill (SB 1672) would add surplus line insurers to those insurers that could be offered business through the clearinghouse starting in January.

Sen. David Simmons, R-Altamonte Springs, defended the bill and said it would give homeowners another choice for coverage. He said homeowners would be told ahead of time that the surplus line insurers are not regulated the same way as other insurers.

Simmons added that homeowners would also be allowed to move back to Citizens after receiving coverage from the surplus line insurer. He also noted some Floridians already insure their homes with these type of insurers.

Fort Lauderdale customers are among those that could be affected by this as well as Tampa residents in the Sinkhole areas. Please call L & S Insurance at 1-888-244-7400 for quotes on Home, Auto, Flood, Business & Commercial, and Life & financial products as well. Please enjoy the full article below.

http://www.insurancejournal.com/news/southeast/2014/04/28/327411.htm