Governor to Urge Lawmakers to Pass Home Insurance Relief During Special Session
Tallahassee- March 29, 2022: Despite skyrocketing home insurance premiums, Florida lawmakers failed to act on the problem during the recently concluded session. Governor DeSantis says he will urge lawmakers to provide some relief during the Special Session he has called in April.
Three-quarters of all home insurance litigation in the country was filed in Florida last year. That Litigation, says Insurance Commissioner David Altmaier, is the driving force behind rising insurance rates in Florida. "The one consistent theme is an excessive amount of litigation in our state," said Altmaier. "76% of all of the country’s litigation in the home owners insurance space happens in Florida.” A statistic that Governor DeSantis called dysfunctional.
The Governor and Insurance Commission Altmaier spoke to reporters Tuesday following a Cabinet meeting in Tallahassee.
“We just went through a legislative session where they failed to deliver," said DeSantis. "And so what I will do is I will ask legislative leaders – ‘Is there something you can get across the finish line?’ And I will encourage them to do that."
Altmaier said the litigation over roof claims is causing the surge in home insurance rates. It’s part of a pattern he says he’s seen over the years as litigants seek to exploit perceived loopholes in the insurance law. "You can go all the way back to mold claims, once you put a $10-thousand dollar cap on mold claims suddenly nobody had a mold claim anymore," he said. "Now they had sink-hole claims, and once you put a definition of catastrophic ground cover collapse in, now nobody had those kinds of claims anymore. Now they’ve got water claims. And so we move from issue to issue.”
One of the solutions is to put in a roof detectible, he said. An idea included in legislation now under consideration. “The way the legislation was worded is that companies would no longer have to offer the all other payroll deductible for roofs. It’s similar to the hurricane deductible," said the Insurance Commissioner.
"I am pretty confident that this will absolutely become a reality," said the Governor. "And it will not wait until the actual session in 2023. It will be done this year.”