FLORIDA – Florida’s senate has introduced four proposed bills that could make significant changes to the state’s insurance laws. Florida’s insurance regulators began a financial analysis of several insurance carriers to determine what regulation could resolve the state’s insurance industry’s underlying issues and expand litigation.
Although the final 2020 loss estimates for Florida’s domestic property insurers have not been calculated, the losses are projected to reach over $1.3 billion, according to Mark Friedlander. Mr. Friedlander is a Florida representative with the Insurance Information Institute.
The following are a few proposed Senate bills that are picking up momentum in the Florida legislature.
Motor Vehicle Windshield Senate Bill 906 – Thousands of lawsuits are filed by glass replacement companies every year due to disputes involving the fair price of windshield replacement. Although most comprehensive auto insurance covers auto glass repairs, glass companies say the repairs’ costs are higher than what insurers are willing to pay.
This Florida Senate bill would prevent automobile glass repair companies from offering incentives or gifts to attract customers. In other words, repair shops would not be able to “offer anything of value” in exchange for filing an auto glass insurance claim.
Motor Vehicle Insurance Senate Bill 54 – One of the more notable proposed modifications to Florida’s motor vehicle insurance laws targets Florida’s no-fault law concerning vehicle accidents. The proposed Senate Bill would require drivers to carry a minimum of $25,000 in bodily injury or death coverages for accidents they cause against another and $50,000 for two or more people. Also, drivers would be required to carry $10,000 in property damage that they could cause in an accident. Also, auto insurers would be obligated to provide medical payment coverage with limits of $5,000 or $10,000. Insurance companies would also be subject to standards surrounding the auto accident claims process to curb accident claims bad faith.
Residential Property Insurance Senate Bill 76 – Florida homeowners’ insurance companies have suffered a substantial number of lawsuits for water damage claims not caused by storms. These claims pushed up the monthly premiums paid by policyholders. This Senate Bill seeks to reimburse policyholders based on the age of the roof and the roof’s material. The Senate bill also reduces the amount of time claimants can file their claims from three years to two years.
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