Florida Senate Bill (SB) 76, which covers a number of points concerning property insurance coverage, was signed into law by Gov. Ron DeSantis, whereas a shopper safety invoice that can change public adjuster necessities within the state is anticipated to be signed quickly.
“Florida’s property insurance coverage market has been in disaster for years. Apart from climate occasions, unhealthy actors have been concentrating on owners and insurance coverage corporations. Over the previous seven years, insurance coverage corporations have paid out over $15 billion in claims, out of which over $10 billion went to lawyer’s charges,” State Consultant Bob Rommel mentioned in a launch. “We have now over 1,100 folks a day shifting to Florida, and we have to be certain that customers have the flexibility to acquire reasonably priced insurance coverage insurance policies from non-public corporations and never simply Residents, which was initially arrange because the insurer of final resort. SB 76 will stabilize the market and will entice new insurance coverage carriers to Florida.”
Intending to handle litigation value drivers and hailed as a regulation that might save Florida’s economic system, SB 76’s provisions embrace requiring plaintiffs to file a pre-suit demand at the very least 10 days earlier than submitting a lawsuit in opposition to an insurer that features an estimate of the demand, the lawyer charges and value demanded, and the quantity in dispute. It additionally makes it unlawful for roofing contractors to solicit a declare from policyholders, in response to PropertyCasualty360.com sister web site the Insurance Coverage Law Center (ICLC).
Further provisions mandate that attorneys’ charges are “contingent on acquiring a judgment for indemnity that exceeds the pre-suit provide made by the insurance coverage firm,” ICLC reported. Additional, SB 76 requires claims to be made inside two years from the date of the loss and supplemental claims should be filed inside three years of the loss. An insurer could require mediation or ADR after receiving discover.
The invoice additionally proposes a alternative value protection desk that takes into consideration the helpful life left on a roof. For instance, if a roof is 10 years previous, an insurer would use the desk to subtract 10 years of helpful life from the alternative value of the roof.
For attorneys, the invoice additionally consists of an intent to litigate provision that requires plaintiff attorneys to present discover that they intend to sue. The service will then have the chance to do additional investigation or pay the demand to keep away from litigation, in response to ICLC, which took a deep dive into the provisions of SB 76.
In a launch, Florida Insurance coverage Commissioner David Altmaier commented: “The motion builds on the dedication the DeSantis administration has proven since day one to make significant insurance coverage reforms that assist defend all Floridians by selling the long-term sustainability of Florida’s insurance coverage market and holding our market aggressive. Senate Invoice 76 takes vital steps to handle the distinctive challenges dealing with the Florida property insurance coverage market, deal with value drivers throughout the market, and assist stabilize charges for customers.”
Adjustments to public adjuster guidelines
Anticipated to be signed into regulation quickly, SB 1598 is a shopper safety invoice that, amongst different issues, overhauls some guidelines concerning public adjusters.
A provision of the invoice would lengthen the time shopper must rescind a contract with a public adjuster from three days to 10. Moreover, the proposal would require public adjusters to ship insurers an in depth estimate, together with itemized restore prices, 60 days after signing a contract with an insured.
Additional, the brand new regulation would require public adjusters to be licensed by the state and would prohibit compensation by contractors or attorneys.
SB 1598 would additionally require insurance coverage corporations to reply to policyholders promptly, pay curiosity on undisputed funds made 90 days after the date of loss, hold data on assigned adjusters and notify policyholders of the adjuster project.