Please call Lee at Acentria Insurance at 954-351-1960 for free quotes on Home, Insurance, Flood, Private Flood, Car and Auto Insurance, Business & Commercial polices & Life & financial as well as group benefits. I will refer to our best agents around the state of Florida.

 

New NFIP Re-authorization Deadline Holds:   December 8, 2017

 

Despite the recent flood events, it seems that the NFIP re-authorization will likely not occur in time for the Dec. 8 deadline with another short term extension likely.  The good news is that the Disaster Relief proposed by the Administration has forgiven $16 B in NFIP debt and the focus would indicate that it is unlikely that a lapse of the NFIP will occur.

NFIP Debt Forgiveness & the Trump Administration

 

The NFIP’s debt will drop to approximately $14.5B and offer enough available borrowing authority to pay all outstanding claims due to yesterday’s passage of a Disaster Relief Spending bill proposed by the Trump Administration and sent to the President for signature.

 

The Administration’s disaster spending proposal, including 16 B in NFIP debt forgiveness, came with 15 proposed NFIP reforms which could complicate any future NFIP re-authorization discussions.

 

While Wright Flood continues to work to oppose eliminating access to the NFIP for any property unable to find coverage in the private market, we do support proposed reforms that strengthen the development of a private flood insurance market.

What Does it All Mean for NFIP Re-authorization

 

While Congress remains engaged with NFIP re-authorization and reform

issues, Wright Flood looks to take advantage of the additional time afforded by the short term re-authorization to continue the push for our combined priorities including:

  • Long term, prompt NFIP re-authorization;
  • Fair, business driven compensation for WYO insurers and our insurance producer partners;
  • An even playing field to allow private insurers the opportunity to further develop a private market for flood insurance;
  • The ongoing financial stability of a robust NFIP

Please keep in touch and be on call should we need your political action and support during this process.  In the coming weeks, Members of Congress will be visiting areas impacted by Harvey and Irma.  If you see or gain access to any Member of Congress, make certain they understand the importance of long term NFIP re-authorization for the communities you serve and for you as a business in those communities. 

 

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Please call Acentria Insurance at 954-3151960 to ask me about quotes for Home, Flood, Private Flood, Auto, Business & Commercial and Life & Financial products as well.

They say they have no choice after the Florida Legislature for the fifth year in a row failed to address the crisis in water damage claims abuse.

“We keep saying help us try to solve this problem,” said Michael Carlson, president of the Personal Insurance Federation of Florida.

AOB will ultimately be addressed by the marketplace if lawmakers don’t do anything

Since lawmakers reneged on enacting reforms, insurance carriers are now taking matters into their own hands and the state’s regulator is warning consumers to be prepared.

“We will continue to see homeowners’ insurance companies raise their rates for our consumers in a best-case scenario, and in a worst case scenario just simply stop offering their products in certain regions of the state,” Insurance Commissioner David Altmaier told the Florida Cabinet last month

Please enjoy the full article below;

http://www.insurancejournal.com/news/southeast/2017/07/19/457961.htm

Please call L & S Insurance at 1-888-244-7400 for free quotes on Home Insurance, Auto, Flood, Private Flood, Business & Commercial, & Life & Financial products as well.

Please watch this video and read the story to see how much money Insurance could cost you.!

http://www.abcactionnews.com/money/consumer/taking-action-for-you/assignment-of-benefits-abuse-driving-up-cost-of-home-car-insurance-in-florida

 

Please call L & S Insurance at 1-888-244-7400 for free quotes on Home Insurance, Auto, Flood, Private Flood, Business & Commercial & Life & Financial.

 

II. AUTO

Motor Vehicle Insurance/ PIP Repeal Measure

SB 156 (Brandes);1766 (Lee, T); HB 461 (Hager); HB 1063 (Grall)

HB 1063 by Representative Grall has emerged as the main House vehicle for the PIP repeal initiative; none of the other bills in the House have moved.

The bill was reported favorably as a committee substitute out of the Insurance and Banking Subcommittee with a vote of 12 to 2. The bill repeals existing PIP law and requires 25/50 bodily injury coverage and does not require any MedPay coverage and also contains no bad faith limitations.

The Senate plans to hear SB 1766 by Senator Tom Lee on April 3 in the Banking and Insurance Committee. While this bill also repeals the requirement to carry minimum PIP benefits, the bills are not identical, as SB 1766 contains a medical payments component of $5,000. A linked bill includes a public records exemption for medical payment information held by the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles.

Unfair Insurance Trade Practices/ Rebate Bill

SB 1032 (Mayfield); HB 1029 (Yarborough)

SB 1032 and HB 1029 amend statute to permit an insurer or its agent to give certain promotional items to insureds, prospective insureds, and others for the purpose of conducting a promotional or advertising program. The bills limit the value of promotional items and prohibit items exceeding $100 in total value from being given. Further, the bills prohibit an insurer or its agent from giving an aggregate total value exceeding $100 in a single calendar year to a single individual. Previously the value was capped at $25 and limited to insurer or agent logo items only.

HB 1029 was passed unanimously by the House Insurance and Banking Subcommittee on March 27 and is now in its final committee of reference, House Commerce Committee. The Senate bill is scheduled to be heard on April 3 by the Senate Banking and Insurance Committee.

SB 420 and HB 813 mandate that the Florida Commission on Hurricane Loss Prevention Methodology to revise hurricane loss prevention models every four years. The House and Senate bills differ in two respects. One, the House bill requires a surplus lines insurer to be rated by A.M. Best in order to be eligible to write flood policies without a diligent effort and the Senate bill requires a rating from any rating agency acceptable to the OIR. Two, the House bill allows flood insurance policies to be exported to the surplus lines market without a diligent effort only until July 1, 2025 and the Senate bill allows this for an indefinite period.

The bills require an agent placing a policyholder with a private flood insurer to get a signed disclosure from the insured 20 days before the expiration of the Federal Flood Insurance policy explaining that if the consumer tries to go back to the Federal Flood Program, they may be subjected to significantly higher rates. We are working to switch this time frame to 20 days after the expiration of the policy.

The Senate bill is scheduled for a hearing on April 3 by Senate Community Affairs, its second of three committee stops. The House bill was approved by Insurance and Banking and moves next to the Commerce Committee.

Workers’ Compensation

SB 1582 (Bradley); HB 7085 (Insurance & Banking Subcommittee)

HB 7085 addresses the recent decisions declaring some components of Florida’s Workers Compensation law unconstitutional. The bill would permit direct payments of attorneys by or on behalf of claimants and increases the total combined temporary wage replacement benefits (TTD/TPD) from 104 weeks to 260 weeks. It also allows a Judge of Compensation Claims (JCC) to award an hourly fee that departs from the statutory percentage based attorney fee schedule under certain situations. Among several other components, HB 7085 also permits insurers to uniformly reduce premiums by no more than 5% if they file an informational-only notice within 30 days. Insurance industry representatives believe that the ability of a judge to award additional attorneys’ fees makes this bill less than ideal, and likely means that litigation will continue to expand causing rates to increase.

SB 1582 seeks to stabilize worker’s compensation rates paid by Florida Businesses. The bill requires insurance carriers to authorize or decline requests for authorization from health care providers within a three-day period and provides that a request is deemed to be authorized if the carrier fails to respond. Like the House bill, the Senate bill increases the temporary partial disability benefits from 104 weeks to 260 weeks, in compliance with the Florida Supreme Court’s decision in Westphal v. City of St. Petersburg. SB 1582 retains the statutory fee schedule for setting claimant attorney’s fees but allows the JCC to consider certain factors and permit deviation from the schedule.

The House bill was scheduled to be heard by the Commerce Committee on March 29, but was removed from the agenda at the last minute; it has not been rescheduled at this point. The Senate bill was filed on March 14 and is scheduled for its first hearing on April 3 by the Senate Banking and Insurance Committee.

 

The Florida Division of Insurance Fraud announced the arrest of Tania Michel, 41, for failing to notify the Department of Financial Services of a federal fraud conviction, continuing to work in the insurance industry after having her license expire, and knowingly misappropriating premium funds while working at an insurance agency.

For a period of nine months, Michel worked at a North Miami Beach insurance agency with an expired professional license and with an unreported federal felony conviction. By failing to reapply for her license, she was able to further conceal the felony fraud conviction that would cause her to become permanently barred from the insurance industry. She was fired by the insurance agency owners for suspected misappropriation of funds and sought employment at another Miami insurance agency where she continued the same unlawful behavior of diverting, or stealing, clients’ monthly premium payments for personal use.

Please call  L & S Insurance & Financial Services, Inc. at 1-888-244-7400 for quotes on Home, Flood, Auto, Business & Commercial & Life & Financial products as well. Please enjoy the full article below!

http://www.insurancejournal.com/news/southeast/2015/09/02/380349.htm

Please call  L & S Insurance at 1-888-244-7400 for quotes on Home, Auto, Flood, Business & Commercial & Life & Financial Insurance as well.

The Florida Department of Financial Services’ Division of Insurance Fraud has arrested Roxana Suarez La Rosa on charges related to PIP (personal injury protection) fraud. In 2012, the Saint Jose Injury Center in Jacksonville, Fla., which Suarez La Rosa owned and operated, generated more than 50 insurance claims. During this time, at least three cooperating witnesses indicated that they participated in staged automobile crashes. Each stated that Suarez La Rosa had participants sign for treatments they never received in order to fraudulently bill their insurance companies.

Suarez La Rosa faces charges of fraud and racketeering and up to 50 years in prison if convicted. Additional cases related to the Saint Jose Injury Center are pending. The case is being prosecuted by office of 4th Judicial Circuit State Attorney Angela Corey.

http://www.insurancejournal.com/news/southeast/2015/05/04/366686.htm

Florida’s Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater announced nine arrests were made last month for personal injury protection (PIP) fraud in Miami.  Charged in eight separate cases involving seven staged accidents, the individuals were arrested and charged for their involvement in the filing of more than $242,000 in fraudulent billings submitted to 11 insurance carriers.

“While their injuries may have been fake, PIP fraud is real and it is not a victimless crime,” said Atwater. “When insurance carriers absorb such high-dollar losses to fraud, we all pay in the form of higher insurance premiums.”

Please call L & S Insurance at 1-888=244-7400 for quote on Home, Flood, Auto, Business & Commercial, & Life & Financial products as well. Please enjoy the full article below;

http://www.insurancejournal.com/news/southeast/2015/02/12/357330.htm