Archive for the ‘Homeowners’ Policy’ Category

Public Adjusters Continue to Expand

In Florida, homeowner's insurance, Homeowners' Policy, Insurance on September 23, 2014 at 1:32

If you follow this blog, you’ll know that there is skepticism about some public adjusters.  While there are of course good, honest people in every occupation, homeowners must be aware that there is also a supply of PAs using homeowners’ damages for their own profits.

It’s important to check out PAs that are licensed, look into the reports on line for fraud, abuse or lack of resolutions.  Find ones that recognize that some of their colleagues may not be scrupulous.

Some public adjusters are national – others focus on just one state or just one region.

Research. Ask questions. Be diligent.

Check out the guide to recovery.


Florida Lawmakers Pass Homeowners’ Rights Bill With Credit Restriction

In Florida Legislation, homeowner's insurance, Homeowners' Policy, Insurance on May 6, 2014 at 1:32

A homeowners’ rights bill with credit restrictions on insurers is on its way to Florida’s Gov. Rick Scott’s desk for approval. The bill, SB 708, unanimously passed the Florida House and would require insurers to create a “homeowner claims bill of rights” so policy holders are aware of what to expect when filling a claim. The initiative became a top priority for Florida’s Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater after thousands of calls were made to his office over confusion on how to file a claim.

The bill also includes a provision that prevents insurers in Florida from using credit information to deny a claim or cancel a policy that have been in effect for more than 90 days. This provision came out of a dispute between regulators and one of Florida’s largest insurance companies.

Read the Insurance Journal article. 

Florida House Rejects Proposal that was Narrowly Passed by Senate

In Florida, Florida Legislation, homeowner's insurance, Homeowners' Policy on May 5, 2014 at 1:32

The Florida House rejected a proposal that the Florida Senate had passed the week before. The proposal would have allowed homeowners seeking coverage from Citizens Property Insurance to be shifted to out-of-state insurers. With the rejection from the House, this provision has now been stripped from Senate Bill 1672.

The concern: out -of-state and private surplus line insurance companies are not subjected to the same regulations as those that are based in Florida. The reality: this could have been another option for homeowners, and plenty of Florida residents already use these types of insurers. The result: This issue is dead for this year’s session, which means there will be no major changes in the way policies are shifted away from Citizens.

Whether this is a positive development for policyholders and insurers remains to be seen.

To view the full bill information click here. 

Buying Homeowners Insurance is Confusing, 4 Tips for First-Time Buyers

In homeowner's insurance, Homeowners' Policy, Insurance Industry on March 7, 2014 at 1:32

When it comes to searching for the right homeowner’s insurance policy, the experience can be overwhelming but the wrong coverage can end up causing more harm than good when you need it the most. Here are four tips for first-time buyers to guide them to getting the best coverage for their needs:

1. Compare coverage from at least three companies. It’s a buyer’s market out there for those looking to buy insurance and insurance companies are fighting for your business. Shop around and compare coverage, price and customer reviews for the best value for your money, not just the cheapest price.

2. Escrow your insurance payments with your mortgage payments. Lenders prefer you to tack on your monthly insurance payments onto your mortgage check. This lets them know your insurance premiums are being paid, and their investment is protected.

Read the last two tips!

Does What Happens in New York Stay in New York?

In homeowner's insurance, Homeowners' Policy on October 4, 2013 at 1:32

The New York Department of Financial Services just proposed a new rule that impacts force placed insurers.  The rule prohibits forced place insurers from placing coverage on a property that is served by an affiliated bank.  Why is this proposal on the table?

A profit-sharing plan seems to be the reason and this proposal will forbid carriers from paying commission on the force-placed insurance, thus limiting the appearance of a “kickback culture,” according to the Superintendent of the Department.  The proposal suggested other provisions including barring payment of contingent commissions based on underwriting profitability or loss ratios.

If this proposal becomes law in NY, will it set a precedent in other states? Will it really help homeowners? Read more.

Homeowners’ Policy and Claims Bill of Rights Working Group Meet

In Homeowners' Policy, Insurance News, Uncategorized on July 26, 2013 at 1:32

Many issues were addressed at the recent Homeowners’ Policy and Claims Bill of Rights Working Group.  It was a forum designed to allow consumer complaints to be heard in a series of public hearings and to heighten awareness of various issues.

Representatives from insurance companies were also involved as the occasion offered a venue for both sides to bring up concerns.

Participants debated numerous subjects and the conversation allowed discourse from policy holder lawyers, as well as attorneys who work for insurance companies.  In one instance, Security First Insurance, in response to a procedural complaint, said the company rarely uses the process in discussion.  With more than 180,000, records show only 138 instances of this specific concern, an extremely small percentage.

“It is in the insurance companies’ best interest to settle meritorious claims,” said Melissa Burt DeVriesse, a lawyer for the company.  “We want to make sure our customers are happy.”

For more information on the Working Group, read the story in the Herald Tribune or Gainesville Sun.