Homeowners got no help from our Legislature

The following Letter to the Editor was published in The Daily Sun on Dec 21, 2022.  Please write to your FL legislators to ask them to reconsider this law  in their March 2023 session to make it a bit favorable to policy holders.  If you do not protest and change this law,  we will see HUGE insurance rate increases in order to subsidize this gift to  insurers. 

My wife and I are Englewood homeowners with property insured by Citizens. Many neighbors were hammered by Hurricane Ian. We were all hopeful that the Special Session devoted to property insurance reform held this past week might benefit Floridians, but this rushed legislation only benefits insurers.

This SB 2 bill is yet another $1 billion bailout, in addition to a $2 billion gift during a previous Special Session, to the insurance industry which had contributed $10 million to Gov. DeSantis’ political ambitions.

It did nothing to reduce or stall the increasing insurance rates that policyholders are experiencing. House and Senate Democrats proposed about 50 amendments to help policyholders, all of which were voted down. Republicans admitted that homeowners will not see reduced rates for at least 18 months.

The bill is punitive to policyholders. It doesn’t address bad-faith insurers who refuse to administer claims in a quick and fair manner. It makes it harder for policyholders to retain legal counsel to fight insurers.

To force customers out of Citizens Property Insurance, the insurer of last resort in Florida, it will require policyholders to purchase up to 20% higher-priced policies on the private market and purchase additional flood insurance policies.

Francis Dance, Englewood