by Tim Meenan, Lobbyist

Session Dispatch – Week 1 and 2by Tim Meenan,Lobbyist.
­The Florida Legislature convened its work on March 7 and will end on May 5, 2023. Governor DeSantis priority issues are dominating the session and getting off to a fast start, including tort reform, consumer data privacy, and banning state investment funds from investing in ESG funds. With two weeks down, there are seven weeks remaining in session.

Please call  Lee from  USAsurance Powered by WeInsure. 954-270-7966 or 833-USAssure at the office. My email is . I am Your Insurance Consultant  about Home Insurance, Auto, Flood, Private Flood, Car, Life Insurance, Mortgage protection, Financial Products, Business  & Commercial Policies, & Group Products for business owners to give Employees benefits at no cost to the employer.


1.     Condominium and Cooperative Associations – HB 1395/SB 154

By Rep. Lopez and Senator Bradley

This is a cleanup package for the Surfside bill that passed in special session last May. The Senate bill has only one committee stop and is on agenda in the Fiscal Policy committee on March 16.  The House bill has not yet been heard.

SB 154 revises the milestone inspection requirements for condominium and cooperative buildings that are three or more stories in height to:

·        Limit the milestone inspection requirements to buildings that include a residential condominium or cooperative;

·        Provide that the milestone inspection requirements apply to buildings that in whole or in part are subject to the condominium or cooperative forms of ownership, such as mixed-use buildings;

·        Clarify that all owners of a mixed-use building in which portions of the building are subject to the condominium or cooperative form of ownership are responsible for ensuring compliance and must share the costs of the inspection;

·        Delete the 25-year milestone inspection requirements for buildings that are within three miles of the coastline;

·        Authorize the local enforcement agencies that are responsible with enforcing the milestone inspection requirements the option to set a 25-year inspection requirement if justified by local environmental conditions, including proximity to seawater;

·        Authorize the local enforcement agency to extend the inspection deadline for a building upon a petition showing good cause that the owner or owners of the building have entered a contract with an architect or engineer to perform the milestone inspection services and the milestone inspection cannot reasonably be completed before the deadline;

·        Provide that the inspection services may be provided by a team of design professionals with an architect or engineer acting as a registered design professional in responsible charge; and

·        Clarify that an association must distribute a copy of the summary of the inspection reports to unit owners within 30 days of its receipt.

Requires the Florida Building Commission to establish by rule a building safety program to implement the milestone inspection requirements within the Florida Building Code. The commission must specify the minimum requirements for the commission’s building safety program by December 31, 2024, including inspection criteria, testing protocols, standardized inspection and reporting forms that are adaptable to an electronic format, and record maintenance requirements for the local authority having jurisdiction.

Revises the requirement that all personal lines residential policies issued by the Citizens Property Insurance Corporation must include flood coverage to exempt condominium or cooperative units that are in certain flood-risk areas and above specified floors in a building.

Clarifies that both the condominium or cooperative unit owner and any person authorized by any owner as his or her representative may inspect the official records of the association.

The bill provides additional presale notice requirements in contracts for sales of a unit by a developer or non developer. This provision is similar to current contract notices to unit owners obligated to furnish certain governing documents to the prospective buyer of a unit more than three days before closing for sales by a non developer or 15 days before closing for sales by a developer. A contract that does not conform to these notice requirements is voidable at the option of the purchaser prior to closing.

2.     Collateral Protection Insurance on Real Property HB 793/SB 410

By Rep. Fernandez-Barquin and Sen. Garcia (I)

This is the first time this type of language has been introduced in Florida. The House and Senate bills have received three committees of reference. HB 793 is on the agenda in the Insurance & Banking subcommittee on March 14. SB 410 has not yet been heard.

The bill creates a new section of law dealing with real property collateral protection insurance, also known as “forced-placed” insurance. The bill seeks to promote the public welfare by regulating collateral protection insurance on real property, create a legal framework which collateral protection insurance on real property may be written in the state, help maintain the separation between mortgage lenders or servicers, and insurers or insurance agents, and minimize the possibilities of unfair competitive practices in the sale, placement, solicitation, and negotiation of collateral protection insurance.

The scope of the bill applies to insurers and insurance agents engaged in any transaction involving collateral protection insurance on real property and all collateral protection insurance written in connection with mortgaged real property, including manufactured and mobile homes.

3.     Insurance HB 505/SB 418

By Rep. Berfeild and Sen. Perry

This bill has turned into the Insurance Omnibus bill for the 2023 Legislative Session. As usual for every session the House and Senate versions will move through the process picking up smaller industry specific language and turning the bill into a train. The Senate bill is ahead of the House version and has the following provisions:

·        Allows a residential property insurer’s rate filing to estimate projected hurricane losses by using a weighted or straight average of two or more models approved by the Florida Commission on Hurricane Loss Projection Methodology.

·        Provides that, in lieu of themselves, the Executive Director of the Citizens Property Insurance Corporation, and the Director of the Division of Emergency Management, respectively, may appoint a designee to be a member of the Commission on Hurricane Loss Projection Methodology.

·        Authorizes an insurer to file a personal lines residential property insurance rating plan that provides premium discounts, credits, and other rate differentials based on windstorm construction standards developed by an independent, not-for-profit, scientific research organization.

·        Limits the requirement that an insurer provide a policyholder who has an automatic bank withdrawal agreement with the insurer with 15 days advance written notice of any increase in policy premiums. Instead, notice will only be required for premium increases that result in an increase in the automatic withdrawal of more than $10 from the previous withdrawal amount.

·        Revises provisions regarding the delivery of a policy to a policyholder by expanding the type of policies authorized to be delivered by electronic transmission to include individual and group health insurance policies, including dental.

·        Revises the mandated deductibles that must be offered for hurricane loss when issuing a personal lines residential property insurance policy. For policies with a dwelling limit of at least $1 million, the bill no longer requires the offer of the current mandated deductibles of 2 percent, 5 percent, and ten percent of the dwelling limit. Instead, the bill provides that an insurer may offer deductibles of up to:

*Ten percent, for a policy covering a risk with dwelling limits of at least $1 million, but less than $3 million;

*Fifteen percent, for a policy covering a risk with dwelling limits greater than $3 million.

·        Revises the requirement that the waiver by a policyholder of windstorm coverage or contents coverage, must be in the policy holder’s own handwriting, by also allowing the waiver to be typed.

·        Eliminates the requirement that a notice be stamped on the declarations page of limited coverage automobile policies. Such policies generally cover antique motor vehicles.

4.     Hurricane Protection for Condominium Association HB 395/SB 556

By Rep. Tuck and Sen. Hooper

Both House and Senate bills have received three committee references. The bill should move through the process but opposition from condo members may create some problems. 

Adds in the definition section of condominium a term “hurricane protection” which covers hurricane shutters, impact glass, code-compliant windows or doors and other code-compliant hurricane protection products in order to potentially earn insurance mitigation credits. 

The bill allows for condominium associations to let members vote and by a simple majority require unit owners to install hurricane protection that complies with or exceeds the applicable building code. 

5.     Residential Property Insurance Rates HB 799/SB 594 (Mitigation Credits)

By Rep. Griffitts and Sen. Martin

The House and Senate bills have received three committee references and should move through the process minus any objections from the engineers regarding vagueness of the term. 

The bill adds “wind uplift prevention” to a list of techniques that can be used to reduce property loss and potentially receive a discount, credit or other rate differentials on property insurance. 

HB 799 has passed its first of three committees, while SB 594 is on the agenda in the Banking & Insurance committee on March 15.

6.     Flood Zone Disclosures for Dwelling Units HB 1291/SB 716

By Rep. Antone and Sen. Stewart

Both the House and Senate versions have received three committees of reference, however the fact that this policy was filed by democrat members probably means it will not move. Neither of these bills has been heard in committee.

Requires landlords or persons authorized to enter into rental agreements on behalf of landlords to make specified disclosures relating to flood zones before the commencement of a tenancy and reinform tenant if the flood zone changes. 

7.      Flood Damage Prevention HB 859/SB 1018 (Mitigation Credits)

By Rep. Basabe and Sen. Trumbull

The bill has three references in the House and Senate. SB 1018 is on the Senate Community Affairs committee agenda on March 15. The House bill has not yet been heard.   

The bill creates the “Flood Damage Prevention Act of 2023.” The bill seeks to allow the Florida Building Commission to develop certain mitigation strategies in rule to mitigate property damage and encourage continued investment in Florida. 

8.     Resolution of Disputed Property Insurance Claims HB 1141/SB 1174

By Rep. Gottlieb and Sen. Polsky

The bills received three references each in the House and Senate. The bills have not been heard and with the current climate in both House and Senate, I would expect this bill not to pass.

The bill creates mandatory mediation for resolution of disputed property insurance claims. If agreed to by both parties, it allows for mediation to be conducted via telephone. Once mediation is invoked, the policyholder must, within 10 days, provide to the insurer any and all supporting documents and information that serve as the basis for the claim. 



1.     Motor Vehicle Liability Policies – HB 57/SB 516 for Risk Retention Groups


The House version only received two committee stops and cleared House Insurance and Banking 15-0 and goes next to the Commerce committee. The Senate version was referred to three committees and was supposed to be on the Banking & Insurance committee agenda on March 16 but was postponed. 

The bill permits the owner or operator of a motor vehicle to provide proof of financial responsibility by obtaining an insurance policy from a risk retention group that: 1) has an “A” or higher rating for financial strength, and “VIII” or higher for financial size by the A.M. Best Company, and 2) only provides commercial coverage to its members and shareholders. The bill would permit an RRG to directly provide commercial auto insurance at a lower price to its Florida members.

2.     Motor Vehicle Insurance and Driver Licenses for Foster Youth SB 168

By Sen. Garcia (I)

The Senate version is moving quickly through the process and only has two committees to go. A House bill has not been filed. The only hold-up may be the fiscal impact associated with the expansion of the program. 

Expands the Keys program by removing language in statute that restricts one of the eligibility paths to receive Keys support. Currently, youth and young adults who achieve eligibility for the Keys program via enrollment in postsecondary educational services and supports (PESS) must also have been in licensed care when he or she reached 18 years of age. The bill expands eligibility for the Keys program by removing the requirement for young adults who are eligible by enrollment in PESS to also have been in licensed care when turning 18 years of age.

The Keys to Independence program (Keys program) is a state-funded normalcy support program designed to remove barriers to obtaining a driver license for foster and former foster youth. The program removes barriers to obtaining a driver license by young adults by paying, subject to available funding, the cost of driver education, licensure, other costs incidental to licensure, and motor vehicle insurance for certain populations. The change will allow approximately an additional 450 young adults to be eligible to participate in the Keys program.

3.     Electronic Motor Vehicle Registration Certificates SB 370

By Sen. Brodeur

The Senate version has moved through its first of three committee stops. A House version has yet to be filed. 

Authorizes acceptance of an electronic certificate of motor vehicle registration as documentation required to be in the possession of a motor vehicle’s operator or carried in the vehicle while the vehicle is being operated on the roads of this state. The bill provides that displaying an electronic registration certificate does not constitute consent for an officer or agent to access any other information on the electronic device, and the person who presents the device assumes liability for any resulting damage to the device.

4.     Motor Vehicle Insurance HB 429/SB 586

By Rep. Alvarez and Sen. Grall

This is the PIP repeal bill for the 2023 Legislative Session. It has been filed by members of the legislature who are plaintiffs’ attorneys. The bill repeals Florida’s Motor Vehicle No-Fault Law and replaces it with a bodily injury liability system. In talks with leadership in the House, they have told us that PIP repeal is off the table or this session. 

5.     Commercial Vehicle Insurance SB 434

By Sen. Wright

The Senate bill has received three committees of reference and no House bill has been filed. 

The bill increases the liability coverage from $350,000 per occurrence to $700,000 per occurrence for commercial motor vehicles with a gross weight over 44,000 pounds. 

6.     Towing Vehicles SB 438

By Sen. Rodriguez

The Senate bill has received three references and a House bill has yet to be filed.

This bill seeks to make tow operators whole when towing vehicles from a scene to an investigating agency’s storage facility by mandating that the agency collects the towing and storage cost from the owner of the vehicle before the agency releases the vehicle and if they fail to do so the agency must pay that amount to the tow operator within 5 days. 

7.     Post-lost Benefit Assignments Under Motor Vehicle Insurance Policies HB 541

By Rep. Griffitts

This tort bill has received three committee references in the House and its Senate companion has yet to be filed. A proposed committee substitute for HB 541 was adopted in the Insurance & Banking and the bill passed on March 14.

This bill eliminates auto “assignment agreements” for any policy issued after July 1, 2023. This is another anti-trial bar bill designed to stop excessive litigation on auto insurance policies. 


1.     Department of Financial Services HB 487/SB 1158

By Rep. Salzman and Sen. DiCeglie

This is an omnibus department package and includes the following:

·        Workers compensation – changes jurisdiction of the three-member panel and reimbursement schedule;

·        Guaranty funds: Makes changes to the board composition of FSIGA, FIGA, FLAHIGA and Medical Malpractice JUA. Allows CFO to remove a director for malfeasance.

·        Changes fingerprint requirements for agent licensing exam centers;

·        Exempts title, life insurance and annuity contracts from agency closure notification provisions.

·        Agent examination is not required for Professional in Claims (PIC) from 2021 Training, LLC;

·        Specifies elective continuing education courses for public adjusters may must be any course related to commercial and residential property coverages, claim adjusting practices, and any other adjuster elective courses;

·        Strikes prohibitions on agents holding limited lines licenses for credit insurance for sales of motor vehicle physical damage and physical breakdown insurance, and combinations of other lines as well;

·        Contains various public adjuster licensing updates;

·        Revokes health insurance Navigator licenses where they fail to maintain a valid federal navigator registration;

·        For property, casualty, except mortgage guaranty, surety, or marine insurance, other than motor vehicle insurance subject to s. 627.728 or s. 627.7281, reduces the period from 90 days to 60 days when such cancellation or termination occurs during the first 60 days during which the insurance is in force and the insurance is canceled or terminated for reasons other than nonpayment of premium, then at least 20 days’ written notice of cancellation or termination must be given accompanied by the reason why;

·        Corrects a glitch for HB701 (2021 session) for Behavioral Health notification and disclosure requirements;

·        Prohibits a liability insurer is prohibited from denying coverage for property and bodily injury liability claims made against an insured for up to the property and bodily injury liability limits set in s. 324.021(9) solely based on the insured’s failure to cooperate with the insurer’s investigation — unless the insurer can clearly demonstrate by a preponderance of the evidence that the insured’s lack of cooperation has resulted in actual prejudice to the insurer;

·        Alternative Dispute Resolution: Would require an insurer is to make a claim determination or elect to repair pursuant to s. 627.70131 before participating in mediation.

·        Imposes new restrictions against Collateral Protection insurance on a mortgaged property;

·        Mediation of Claims: Increases the jurisdictional amount from $10,000 per claim to $50,000 per claim for personal injury or property damage claims related to a motor vehicle; insurers must bear all costs of the mediation, which must be reasonable; allows DFS to adopt rules for the program;

·        FIGA: allows sharing of the insolvent insurers records with the prospective solvent assuming insurer for purposes of due diligence and allows transfer of the insolvent insurers book of business and policies; allows adjustment of cancellation date of policies by the receiver;

·        Establishes a Direct Support Organization for the State Fire Marshal;

·        Service Warranties: allows DFS to issue salesperson license for motor vehicle service agreement companies and insurers to nonresident applicant where there is reciprocity with the applicant’s home state; licensees charged with a felony may be immediately suspended; licenses must report actions against their license within 30 days of final administrative action;

·        Bail bonds: revises agency licensing requirements.