Please call  Lee from L & S Insurance, Inc. Your Insurance Consultant  about Home Insurance, Auto, Flood, Private Flood, Car, Life Insurance & Financial Products, Business  & Commercial Policies, and Group Products for business owners to give Employees benefits at no cost to them.

A bill the Florida insurance industry says will help reign in assignment of benefits abuse that is plaguing the state and raising insurance costs has passed its final committee in the Florida Senate and is now headed to the full Senate floor for debate.

The Florida Senate Rules Committee passed SB 122 on Wednesday, inching AOB reform one step closer to being a reality after seven years of failed attempts by the Florida Legislature.

“Year after year we have watched the AOB crisis negatively impact our consumers – many of which are recovering from hurricanes. Now, more than ever, is the time to pass meaningful reform so we can protect consumers and start recovering from years of compounding abuse,” Florida Insurance Commissioner David Altmaier said in a statement Wednesday. “The advancement of SB 122 is a significant step towards protecting Floridians from future AOB abuse.”

The Senate bill, introduced by Senator Doug Broxson, is now identical to Florida House Bill 7065, which passed that chamber last week.

“This is a great development. For the first time in nearly seven years we are poised for final passage of meaningful AOB reform. The bill will directly address cost drivers that are pushing up rates by reducing AOB abuse and fraud. Florida consumers will benefit, and the insurance market will be healthier as a result,” said Michael Carlson, president of the Personal Insurance Federation of Florida (PIFF).

The bill includes certain consumer protection provisions such as rescission and emergency services sublimit provisions, and creates a new rate filing requirement for Citizens Property Insurance Corp., which has filed rate increases for the last several years that it has largely blamed on AOB.

Please enjoy the full article below;

https://www.insurancejournal.com/news/southeast/2019/04/18/524155.htm

 

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Please call  Lee from L & S Insurance, Inc. Your Insurance Consultant  about Home Insurance, Auto, Flood, Private Flood, Car, Life Insurance & Financial Products, Business  & Commercial Policies, and Group Products for business owners to give Employees benefits at no cost to them.

Two bills seeking to change the way Florida surplus lines business is handled are currently working their way through the Florida State Legislature and advocates say the potential laws could bring much needed efficiency to the state’s surplus lines market.

The bills – Senate 538 and House Bill 387 – propose small changes with potentially large effects on Florida surplus lines agents. The bills were introduced by Senator Jeff Brandes, R- St. Petersburg, and Representative Colleen Burton, R-Florida, respectively.

Please enjoy the full article below;

https://www.insurancejournal.com/news/southeast/2019/04/09/523091.htm

Please call  Lee from L & S Insurance, Inc. Your Insurance Consultant  about Home Insurance, Auto, Flood, Private Flood, Car, Life Insurance & Financial Products, Business  & Commercial Policies, and Group Products for business owners to give Employees benefits at no cost to them.

The “Underwater Homeowners Association” sounds like a sad joke about the future of real estate in flood-prone Miami.

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Starting in his affluent suburb of Pinecrest, artist Xavier Cortada hopes his concept will spread, helping people nationwide understand that melting polar ice is no abstract threat.

Cortada repurposes “for sale” signs, painting partially-submerged numbers that announce exactly how many feet above sea level each property is, for people to plant in their front yards. A growing number of members have signed on at underwaterhoa.org since Cortada launched the idea in December.

Cortada’s signs show his home is on relatively high ground: 6 feet (2 meters) above sea level. His studio is at 8 feet (2.5 meters).

Rising seas will spare no one concerned about quality of life in Pinecrest, a village of 19,000 not far from Biscayne Bay. Like the rest of South Florida, it’s trapped between the ocean and the swampy Everglades, which act as a western coastline. Water also rises through Florida’s porous bedrock, making seawalls and levees less effective.

t’s actually an earnest effort to turn neighbors into climate-change advocates, block-by-block.

Please enjoy the full article below;

https://www.insurancejournal.com/news/southeast/2019/04/05/522959.htm

Please call  Lee from L & S Insurance, Inc. Your Insurance Consultant  about Home Insurance, Auto, Flood, Private Flood, Car, Life Insurance & Financial Products, Business  & Commercial Policies, and Group Products for business owners to give Employees benefits at no cost to them.

More than $40.5 million was recovered for Florida insurance consumers in 2018, including $17.4 million recovered for Hurricane Michael victims, by the state’s Insurance Consumer Helpline, according to a statement from Florida CFO Jimmy Patronis.

Patronis said the Florida Department of Financial Services Insurance Consumer Helpline (1-877-MY-FL-CFO) received more than 297,500 calls for assistance and opened more than 22,500 complaints on behalf of consumers last year.

 

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https://www.insurancejournal.com/news/southeast/2019/03/22/521395.htm

Please call  Lee from L & S Insurance, Inc. Your Insurance Consultant  about Home Insurance, Auto, Flood, Private Flood, Car, Life Insurance & Financial Products, Business  & Commercial Policies, and Group Products for business owners to give Employees benefits at no cost to them.

As lawmakers convene for the Florida Legislature for the 2019 Legislative Session, Sen. Doug Broxson (R-Gulf Breeze), an independent agent and member of the Florida Association of Insurance Agents (FAIA), has introduced a bill supported by the industry to reform a law that is being abused by attorneys and unscrupulous contractors

The current law provides that a policyholder who sues an insurance company for underpaying or denying a claim will not have to pay the insurance company’s attorney fees should the company win.

In theory, it levels the playing field for consumers who don’t have the financial resources to compete with a large insurance company.

In practice, it creates an environment ripe for abuse.

Please enjoy the full article below;

https://www.insurancejournal.com/news/southeast/2019/03/19/520981.htm

Please call  Lee from L & S Insurance, Inc. Your Insurance Consultant  about Home Insurance, Auto, Flood, Private Flood, Car, Life Insurance & Financial Products, Business  & Commercial Policies, and Group Products for business owners to give Employees benefits at no cost to them.

Companies can be shut down or be told to non renew a large book of their business. This will be a huge problem for so many of his happens.

After reviewing the year-end financial statements of the Florida-based carriers it rates, Ohio-based ratings agency Demotech is warning that many insurers could see underwriting and operating losses in their year-end financial statements and that those insurers should be prepared to shore up and strengthen their reserves going forward.

“Florida has experienced three straight years of storms, as well as an [AOB] issue and other court issues – it’s a complex environment,” said Demotech President Joe Petrelli.

On Feb. 18, Demotech announced it had affirmed the Financial Stability Ratings (FSRs) of 51 of the 52 Florida-focused carriers it rates prior to the public release of their year-end financial statements, saying the companies had demonstrated to Demotech realistic estimates of gross and net loss and loss adjustment expense reserves related to claims arising from 2017’s Hurricane Irma and 2018’s Hurricane Michael and that their reinsurance was of “sufficient quality and quantity to expect reimbursement for outstanding losses and loss adjustment expenses…”

Despite these Florida-focused insurers having their ratings affirmed, on Feb. 28 Demotech said underwriting and operating losses should be anticipated from the year-end financial statements of many Florida carriers.

“Matthew, Irma and Michael represented a named event for each of the past three years,” the statement from Demotech said. “Operating profits proved to be elusive for many.”

Demotech further stated that going forward insurers will need to strengthen their loss and loss adjustment expense reserves to deal with the “difficult operational environment associated with assignment of benefits [AOB] and other judicial precedents that expanded insurer liability…”

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Despite these Florida-focused insurers having their ratings affirmed, on Feb. 28 Demotech said underwriting and operating losses should be anticipated from the year-end financial statements of many Florida carriers.

“Matthew, Irma and Michael represented a named event for each of the past three years,” the statement from Demotech said. “Operating profits proved to be elusive for many.”

Please call  Lee from L & S Insurance, Inc. Your Insurance Consultant  about Home Insurance, Auto, Flood, Private Flood, Car, Life Insurance & Financial Products, Business  & Commercial Policies, and Group Products for business owners to give Employees benefits at no cost to them

Florida Chief Financial Officer (CFO) Jimmy Patronis has announced a new initiative aimed at reducing fraud in the state.

According to a statement from the Florida Department of Financial Services, the “Fraud Free Florida” initiative will work to better coordinate collective investigative efforts to protect Florida’s large population, especially seniors, from “scam artists.”

“Florida currently ranks first in fraud and second in identity theft nationwide. In 2017, identity theft cost Americans nearly $905 million,” Patronis said. “This is unacceptable, and we must use innovative ways to stay two steps ahead of criminals who want to take your identity, steal money from families who need it, and prey on vulnerable Floridians.”

Fraud Free Florida will bring together statewide law enforcement officials, local state attorneys, private sector stakeholders, and members of CFO Patronis’ fraud investigative teams. The goal will be to help Florida stay ahead of new scams and take on fraud already taking place in the state including: fraud at unscrupulous opioid treatment centers, public assistance fraud, identity theft, and cybersecurity issues.

Patronis noted fraud is especially rampant after every hurricane, when “millions of dollars are stolen as crooks prey on Florida families in their time of need to make a quick buck.

https://www.insurancejournal.com/news/southeast/2019/03/05/519550.htm