Tag Archives: Property Insurance

Four Insurance Claim Innovations to Watch Out for in 2015

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Overview

There is some remarkable innovation going on in the homeowners insurance industry, and it’s only just begun. Everything around us is changing – the business, employees, customers, and systems. The technology tidal wave may be moments away from reaching the shores of the insurance industry.

Introduction

In 2014, we continued to swap the outdated for the new and more innovative. We began replacing humans with drones and cars with the Uber application. We do not need hotels anymore after Airbnb. Who needs gas when you can buy a Tesla? We can replace tablets with the iPhone 6 and 6+. Why pay for a “physical” when you can monitor your health with FitBit? Forget your wallet? No problem, you don’t need it anymore if you have Apple Pay. If you have a bad memory, you won’t miss a thing with a GoPro or Google Glass. What a year!

The disruptive forces are coming from everywhere, and they will continue to reshape every piece of the homeowners insurance industry in 2015. Following an exciting 2014 in innovation, it’s time to turn our focus to 2015.  Let’s take a look at the four insurance claim innovations to watch out for in 2015.

Innovative Employees: Disruptive Forces Overpower Legacies and Politics

The most important thing to watch for is the innovative employee in the homeowners insurance industry. The biggest innovations mentioned in the introduction were born within the walls of an existing company. The best technology advancement in the world cannot solve any problems without innovative employees who will ensure client and customer adoption. In 2015, innovative employees at homeowners insurance companies will continue the trend of disrupting current systems in the face of legacy systems and company politics. It’s not just “okay” to challenge the company status quo.  Rather, it’s celebrated. How long will it be until an innovative field adjuster scopes a loss with Google Glass and issues coverage using Google Pay? No one can be sure, but it’s likely right around the corner and will have lasting effects on customer experience.

Innovative Insurers: the Big Insurers are Getting Bigger

Innovative companies like Progressive Casualty Insurance Company use their financial resources to eliminate competition from weaker insurers, and they are headed for the homeowners insurance industry. The large automobile insurers have rapidly increased their homeowners insurance business. These companies changed the automobile insurance industry, and they are about to do the same to the homeowners insurance industry. As the market consolidates to reveal more power players, these colossal insurers will continue to innovate to grow their book of business and reduce competition. “Connected homes” are coming sooner than you may think. How long will it be until Progressive places a black box in each home to detect a water leak before it causes any damage? In 2015, innovative insurers will use their powers take an increasingly bigger share of the national homeowners insurance market.

Innovative Techniques: Introducing the Drone Field Adjusters

The third important thing to watch for is the drone field adjuster. If IBM’s Watson can defeat the best Jeopardy contestants, it is only a matter of time until insurers can program drones to conduct portions of the claims adjustment process. The technology is available, however, the industry is still years away from being able to confidently replace skilled field adjusters. Nevertheless, the industry will make significant strides in 2015 towards automating the adjusting process. Innovative people at innovative insurance companies are already making drones a priority, and it is only a matter of time until drones can hover over 1,000 hurricane-damaged roofs in one day to initiate the claim payment process.

Innovative Customers and Partners: Generation Y is Starting the Takeover

The fifth and final innovation is right in front of insurers: their current and future Generation Y customers and business partners. Each year, homeowners insurers’ traditional customers and partners look less and less like they used to. In their place, Generation Y members become a bigger part of insurers’ customers and business partners. Generation Y homeowners have an entirely different set of expectations, including immediate responses via social media; usage-based premiums for more customer-based products (for example, Progressive’s Snapshot); and rewards for being a good customer.

By the end of 2015, wearable technology may be able to document whether a homeowner turns off her water main before leaving for vacation. Shouldn’t she be rewarded if she takes a “selfie” next to her water valve showing she prevented a potentially disastrous water loss?  She’s surely going to tweet about it if she isn’t rewarded. #insurancefail. Even more, with the developments of Uber and Airbnb, customers may never have to pay for insurance again! That’s a scary thought. Ultimately, insurers need to pay close attention to the needs of their fastest growing customer base.

Homeowners insurers must also remember that their Generation Y partners – third party adjusters, contractors, and agents – will continue to grow in 2015. They will want to partner with companies that reflect their “reality,” including innovating, taking risks, and communicating with clients in the digital world. Insurers’ third party agents may be able to convert more leads if they use WhatsApp or Twitter instead of traditional voice calls. Homeowners may use Snapchat to schedule a field adjuster inspection. As the demographics shift, more of insurers’ third party partners are savvy with this technology. If insurers’ Generation Y partners use Apple Pay to process payments without any human cost, then insurers should too. If insurers’ third party adjusters know how to use a GoPro to record their epic surf trip in the highest quality digital format, they can use that same breakthrough technology to document the proper coverage decision.

Generation Y is the “new normal” for homeowners insurers. If insurers fail to meet Generation Y’s expectations, homeowners and partners are one click away from damaging insurers’ reputations, and one more click away from choosing a different insurer.

This article was previously published in Claims Journal’s Windstorm magazine.

Citizens Approves Another Round of Florida Homeowners Insurance Takeouts

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Overview:

The Citizens takeouts continue. Insurers were recently authorized to assume nearly 100,000 policies from Citizens. Read more to find out the companies involved in this round of takeouts, and how successful the recent takeouts have been.



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Update on Citizens Takeouts

Florida regulators approved Florida insurers to assume approximately 93,500 policies from Citizens. The companies and their allotment include:

  • Mount Beacon: 35,000
  • Anchor Property & Casualty: 28,000
  • Heritage: 20,500
  • Southern Oak: 10,000

The Tampa Tribune gave us some interesting statistics on how many of these recent takeout approvals actually converted to takeouts. In 2014, although approximately 1.1M policies were approved for assumption, insurers only assumed approximately 415,000.

In the last two years, Citizens has seen its policy count decrease from approximately 1.5M to 661,000. As a result, Citizens’s exposure has decreased from $510B to $200B.

If you want to know more about the takeouts over the past several months, here are our articles:

If you want to learn more about some of the other insurers involved in the recent takeouts (Mount Beacon, Anchor, Homeowners Choice, and more), make sure to click on the links in the bullets above, or you can view all of our Takeout articles on one page here.


Upgraded First Party Property Insurance Blog Resources Page

If you want to see how we stay motivated and updated, check out are Upgraded First Party Property Insurance Blog Resources Page by clicking here. We put together a great list of resources we turn to on a daily basis.


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Florida Citizens Takeout Update: Homeowners Choice Insurance Authorized to Assume 50,000 Citizens Policies


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Homeowners Choice has been authorized to assume approximately 50,000 Citizens policies. 27,000 of these policies are wind-only coverage.

For those of you keeping track, here are the details on the takeouts occurring over the last few months:

If you want to learn more about some of the other insurers involved in the recent takeouts, make sure to click on the links in the bullets above, or you can view all of these articles on one page here.


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Florida Approves Takeout of More Than 180,000 Insurance Policies from Citizens

First Party Property Insurance Blog is Proud to Announce our New E-Book: the Florida Homeowners Insurance Claims and Litigation Handbook.

You know I am always here to provide tons of value to businesses in the insurance claims industry. We spent years collecting and analyzing leading industry data, strategies, action steps, and cases to know for our clients. We decided to make this available exclusively to the First Party Property Insurance Blog Community.

In this 99 page book, we provide our readers with:

  • the 16 Strategies You Need to Know to Master Florida Homeowners Insurance Claims, including pages of Action Steps and Cases to Know for evaluating each strategy
  • the 6 Key Statutes You Need to Know to Master Florida Homeowners Insurance Claims, including Practice Tips and Cases to Know for handling each statute
  • The 3 Tools You Need in Your Florida Homeowners Insurance Claims Toolbox, including our Resources, Legal Document Library, and Affirmative Defenses analysis, and
  • our CaseGlide Florida Homeowners Insurance Databases with insurer data, attorneys, and public adjusters

We’ve been conducting Webinars and Training Sessions on this material for years, and they have always helped our clients’ businesses. The Florida Homeowners Insurance Claims and Litigation Handbook has everything you need to help your colleagues, staff, and partners master our claims industry. Our clients have used the material in this E-Book to revolutionize how they handle claims and litigation.

We’re so confident in this E-Book that we offer you a money-back guarantee if it does not have the information you and your insurance claims business needed to improve. Click the image of the E-Book now or click the Add to Cart Button to share this book with your staff, colleagues, and clients.


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Quick Side Note:

Anchor Property & Casualty

If you are visiting our site because you want to know more about Anchor Property & Casualty, please visit their website for more information. Their website is hard to find so we suggest bookmarking this page or their website.


The Story

Florida recently approved more than 180,000 takeouts of personal and commercial property insurance policies from Citizens. This follows September’s takeout opportunity of approximately 425,000 policies discussed in this article, and an earlier October takeout of over 200,000 policies discussed here.

In the most recent takeout, Florida regulators approved the following takeouts:

Anchor Property & Casualty Insurance Company Insurance Company – 50,000 personal residential policies

• Avatar Property & Casualty Insurance Company – 10,000 personal residential policies

Cypress Property & Casualty Insurance Company – 23,000 personal residential policies

Heritage Property & Casualty Insurance Company – 20,000 personal residential policies and up to 500 commercial residential polices

Mount Beacon Insurance Company – 38,485 personal residential policies

Prepared Insurance Company – 20,000 personal residential policies

Security First Insurance Company – 8,555 personal residential policies

Southern Oak Insurance Company –  10,000 personal residential policies

United Property & Casualty Insurance Company – 2,027 commercial residential policies

 


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Florida Approves Takeout of More Than 210,00 Insurance Policies from Citizens

First Party Property Insurance Blog is Proud to Announce our New E-Book: the Florida Homeowners Insurance Claims and Litigation Handbook.

You know I am always here to provide tons of value to businesses in the insurance claims industry. We spent years collecting and analyzing leading industry data, strategies, action steps, and cases to know for our clients. We decided to make this available exclusively to the First Party Property Insurance Blog Community.

In this 99 page book, we provide our readers with:

  • the 16 Strategies You Need to Know to Master Florida Homeowners Insurance Claims, including pages of Action Steps and Cases to Know for evaluating each strategy
  • the 6 Key Statutes You Need to Know to Master Florida Homeowners Insurance Claims, including Practice Tips and Cases to Know for handling each statute
  • The 3 Tools You Need in Your Florida Homeowners Insurance Claims Toolbox, including our Resources, Legal Document Library, and Affirmative Defenses analysis, and
  • our CaseGlide Florida Homeowners Insurance Databases with insurer data, attorneys, and public adjusters

We’ve been conducting Webinars and Training Sessions on this material for years, and they have always helped our clients’ businesses. The Florida Homeowners Insurance Claims and Litigation Handbook has everything you need to help your colleagues, staff, and partners master our claims industry. Our clients have used the material in this E-Book to revolutionize how they handle claims and litigation.

We’re so confident in this E-Book that we offer you a money-back guarantee if it does not have the information you and your insurance claims business needed to improve. Click the image of the E-Book or the Add to Cart button to purchase the book for you, your team, and your clients.


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Citizens Property Insurance Corporation Logo

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Late last week, Florida approved more than 210,000 takeouts of personal and commercial property insurance policies from Citizens.  This follows September’s takeout opportunity of approximately 425,000 policies discussed in this article.

In this October takeout, Florida regulators approved the following takeouts:

American Colonial Insurance Company – 22,050 personal residential policies

Cypress Property & Casualty Insurance Company – 23,000 personal residential policies

Heritage Property & Casualty Insurance Company – 20,000 personal residential policies and up to 600 commercial residential polices

Homeowners Choice Property & Casualty Insurance Company – 69,000 personal residential policies

Mount Beacon Insurance Company – 29,515 personal residential policies

Olympus Insurance Company – 10,000 personal residential policies

Safepoint Insurance Company – 18,000 personal residential policies

United Property & Casualty Insurance Company – 2,027 commercial residential policies

Weston Insurance Company – 19,515 personal residential policies and up to 1,781 commercial residential and non-residential policies



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Have Any More Questions about Florida Homeowners Insurance Claims?

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photo from: https://www.citizensfla.com/about/newsroom.cfm

Florida Homeowners Insurance Claim for Long Term Water Leak Not Excluded as a Matter of Law

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Overview:

In Price v. Castle Key Indemnity Company, Florida’s Second DCA recently dealt a heavy hit to homeowners insurers’ arguments using the continuous/constant or repeated seepage defense.

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First Party Property Insurance Blog is Proud to Announce our New E-Book: the Florida Homeowners Insurance Claims and Litigation Handbook.

You know I am always here to provide tons of value to businesses in the insurance claims industry. We spent years collecting and analyzing leading industry data, strategies, action steps, and cases to know for our clients. We decided to make this available exclusively to the First Party Property Insurance Blog Community.

In this 99 page book, we provide our readers with:

  • the 16 Strategies You Need to Know to Master Florida Homeowners Insurance Claims, including pages of Action Steps and Cases to Know for evaluating each strategy
  • the 6 Key Statutes You Need to Know to Master Florida Homeowners Insurance Claims, including Practice Tips and Cases to Know for handling each statute
  • The 3 Tools You Need in Your Florida Homeowners Insurance Claims Toolbox, including our Resources, Legal Document Library, and Affirmative Defenses analysis, and
  • our CaseGlide Florida Homeowners Insurance Databases with insurer data, attorneys, and public adjusters

We’ve been conducting Webinars and Training Sessions on this material for years, and they have always helped our clients’ businesses. The Florida Homeowners Insurance Claims and Litigation Handbook has everything you need to help your colleagues, staff, and partners master our claims industry. Our clients have used the material in this E-Book to revolutionize how they handle claims and litigation.

We’re so confident in this E-Book that we offer you a money-back guarantee if it does not have the information you and your insurance claims business needed to improve. Click the image of the E-Book or the Add to Cart button to purchase the book for you, your team, and your clients.

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Facts

The facts in Price were a prime example of a long term water damage insurance claim. The homeowners insurer gathered strong evidence, and was able to show that this leak continued for weeks and weeks without any stoppage. The insurer’s evidence was startling: over a period of more than 30 days, over 195,000 gallons of water escaped from a pipe going to the homeowner’s toilet.  Faced with this evidence, the trial court granted summary judgment for the insurer.

The Second DCA disagreed with the insurer and the trial court. The Second DCA’s reason: the terms “sudden” and “seepage” were “less than clear” when applied to these facts. Accordingly, the Second DCA determined that these words created a latent ambiguity.  The Second DCA instructed the trial court to allow a jury to determine coverage in this case, instead of a judge.

Disappointing Discussion

Although this is the most heavily litigated coverage issue in Florida homeowners insurance, the Second DCA did not take much time to explain its decision.

These long term water damage opinions don’t come often. Usually, claims do not have such egregiously long leaks, or they have some type of dispute on the duration … so they should be determined by a jury. When the rare case like this pops up, you would think the Second DCA would take the chance to explain what types of long term water damage should be covered as a matter of law under these policies; and what types shouldn’t be.

Unfortunately, the Second DCA did not take that opportunity. Moving forward, this leaves many unanswered questions, and a lot of room for interpretation for trial court judges. I wouldn’t be surprised if there were tens of thousands of pending claims with this issue. The parties and lawyers handling those cases don’t seem to have much to work with from that case, unless they are to assume every insurance policy is ambiguous.

Takeaway

In trial court hearings, this Price opinion will give homeowners’ attorneys stronger arguments, but only if the homeowners insurer tries to obtain summary judgment.  Most of these cases don’t go that route.

I would not be surprised to see other DCAs take a different approach than the Second DCA did in Price.  I doubt all courts will be willing to find that every insurance policy is ambiguous as to long term water losses. A case like this is the perfect example of a case where insurers could be granted summary judgment.

We will see how this changes the strategies. Hopefully, we will get some more opinions on this issue soon.


Have Any More Questions about Florida Homeowners Insurance Claims?

If you’re not ready to contract us, go to our information hub at the Getting Started page by clicking HERE.

If you’re ready to contact us, please send us a confidential message in the form below and we will immediately respond:


Here is a full copy of the order:

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If you want to learn more about water damage insurance claims, here are some of our previous articles on Florida water damage insurance claims:

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Florida Regulators Approve Takeout of 425,000 Citizens Policies

First Party Property Insurance Blog is Proud to Announce our New E-Book: the Florida Homeowners Insurance Claims and Litigation Handbook.

You know I am always here to provide tons of value to businesses in the insurance claims industry. We spent years collecting and analyzing leading industry data, strategies, action steps, and cases to know for our clients. We decided to make this available exclusively to the First Party Property Insurance Blog Community.

In this 99 page book, we provide our readers with:

  • the 16 Strategies You Need to Know to Master Florida Homeowners Insurance Claims, including pages of Action Steps and Cases to Know for evaluating each strategy
  • the 6 Key Statutes You Need to Know to Master Florida Homeowners Insurance Claims, including Practice Tips and Cases to Know for handling each statute
  • The 3 Tools You Need in Your Florida Homeowners Insurance Claims Toolbox, including our Resources, Legal Document Library, and Affirmative Defenses analysis, and
  • our CaseGlide Florida Homeowners Insurance Databases with insurer data, attorneys, and public adjusters

We’ve been conducting Webinars and Training Sessions on this material for years, and they have always helped our clients’ businesses. The Florida Homeowners Insurance Claims and Litigation Handbook has everything you need to help your colleagues, staff, and partners master our claims industry. Our clients have used the material in this E-Book to revolutionize how they handle claims and litigation.

We’re so confident in this E-Book that we offer you a money-back guarantee if it does not have the information you and your insurance claims business needed to improve. Click the image of the E-Book or the Add to Cart button to purchase the book for you, your team, and your clients.


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Citizens Property Insurance Corporation Logo

Yesterday, Florida insurance regulators announced that several Florida homeowners insurance companies will have the option to takeout a total of 425,000 policies. According to the Tampa Bay Times, the two biggest approvals went to Heritage Property & Casualty Ins. Co. (approximately 70,000) and Elements Property Insurance Co. (approximately 60,000.00).

These 425,000 policies comprise nearly half of the estimated 933,000 outstanding Citizens policies.

In addition to Heritage and Elements, regulators also authorized the following companies to assume policies from Citizens:

  • American Integrity Insurance Co.
  • Avatar Property & Casualty Insurance Co.
  • Capitol Preferred Insurance Co.
  • Mount Beacon Insurance Co.;
  • Olympus Insurance Co.
  • Safepoint Insurance Co.
  • Southern Fidelity Insurance Co.
  • Southern Fidelity Property & Casualty Insurance Co.
  • Southern Oak Insurance Co.
  • Tower Hill Signature Insurance Co.
  • United Property & Casualty Insurance Co.
  • Universal Insurance Co. of North America

This will shake up First Party Property Insurance Blog’s Florida Homeowners Insurers Lists.  Take a look at that page if you want to know where the policy counts stood earlier this year.


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photo from: https://www.citizensfla.com/about/newsroom.cfm

New Florida Homeowners Insurance Statutes Page

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Getting Started

New to the First Party Property Insurance Blog? Take five minutes to find the answers to your insurance questions by clicking here.


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rty Property Insurance Blog; however, I think it will be the most helpful one yet.

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We recently put together a very improved page outlining all of the laws that apply to Florida homeowners insurance claims.  I encourage you to check it out here, and bookmark it in your internet browser for future reference.

We hope its a helpful tool for you. It is much easier to navigate than any alternative.  I categorized all of the laws so that you could find the law you are looking for as quickly as possible.  I also provided a brief summary of each law to help you.

As always, if you have any questions about these laws or anything else related to Florida homeowners insurance claims, please contact us.


Did this Article Answer Your Homeowners Insurance Question?

If not, then go to our Getting Started page by clicking here, where we have a guide with easy-to-find links to the laws, cases, and articles that will answer your question.


Contact MeCall or message me today if you have any questions about Florida homeowners insurance claims or if you want to know about the benefits of joining the First Party Property Insurance Blog‘s “In the Know” Community.

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Florida Homeowners Insurance Claims for Hail Damage to the Roof

Overview:

This article about hail damage and insurance claims is the most popular article on First Party Property Insurance Blog for a reason…

What happens when a homeowner has a roof leak?  Was the leak from the eventual wear and tear on the roof?  Or did hail cause the damage to the roof and the roof leak?  Is it covered by insurance, or it is not? How do I find out if it was hail?  What if my roofer is saying hail caused it, but I am not sure? These are some of the toughest questions facing homeowners and homeowners insurers today.

You have heard it in the news whether you are in the insurance industry or not: hail claims are increasing in rapid numbers.  Hail claims raise many insurance issues.  What do you need to know about them?


First Party Property Insurance Blog is Proud to Announce our New E-Book: the Florida Homeowners Insurance Claims and Litigation Handbook.

You know I am always here to provide tons of value to businesses in the insurance claims industry. We spent years collecting and analyzing leading industry data, strategies, action steps, and cases to know for our clients. We decided to make this available exclusively to the First Party Property Insurance Blog Community.

In this 99 page book, we provide our readers with:

  • the 16 Strategies You Need to Know to Master Florida Homeowners Insurance Claims, including pages of Action Steps and Cases to Know for evaluating each strategy
  • the 6 Key Statutes You Need to Know to Master Florida Homeowners Insurance Claims, including Practice Tips and Cases to Know for handling each statute
  • The 3 Tools You Need in Your Florida Homeowners Insurance Claims Toolbox, including our Resources, Legal Document Library, and Affirmative Defenses analysis, and
  • our CaseGlide Florida Homeowners Insurance Databases with insurer data, attorneys, and public adjusters

We’ve been conducting Webinars and Training Sessions on this material for years, and they have always helped our clients’ businesses. The Florida Homeowners Insurance Claims and Litigation Handbook has everything you need to help your colleagues, staff, and partners master our claims industry. Our clients have used the material in this E-Book to revolutionize how they handle claims and litigation.

We’re so confident in this E-Book that we offer you a money-back guarantee if it does not have the information you and your insurance claims business needed to improve. Click the image above or the Add to Cart button to join those whom have bought this for their staff, colleagues, and clients.


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Understanding the Issue: Could the Actual Roof Be Covered by Homeowners’ Insurance?

Here is the issue: when an aged roof leaks, people understand that the Florida homeowners insurers will not pay to replace the roof. Most people know that the Florida homeowners insurers specifically exclude wear and tear from coverage, and the only time a homeowners insurer will pay for a new roof is if there was a hurricane or some other event. So, when a roof fails, people report a claim for the damage that was caused by the actual water leaking through the roof, but not the roof itself.

Now, however, people are reporting more hail claims than ever, and homeowners insurers are seeing some suspicious hail claims.

Why is this an issue?  Because if someone reports a roof leak as a hail claim instead of from wear and tear, the homeowner may be entitled to insurance coverage for the roof repairs (in addition to the damage from the water leak).

Thus, now you see where the suspicion comes in: when a homeowners insurer responds to dozens to hundreds of homeowners insurance claims where the adjuster cannot find hail damage on the roof … but the homeowners’ roofer is 100% certain that there is hail damage.

So, have homeowners insurers taken the suspicion too far?

Have the homeowners insurers’ attorneys taken the suspicion too far?

That’s what Chip Merlin says.  In that article, he explains his objections to this hail article in Claims Journal from Steve Badger, an attorney who represents homeowners insurance companies.


I am not going to say who is right and who is wrong, but I will take the chance to quickly point out some of homeowners insurers’ biggest mistakes when handling an insurance claim for hail damage, and how to fix them.

The Mistakes in Handling a Hail Claim

In my experience, the worst thing an insurer can do is simply hand a hail damage property insurance claim to an adjuster or attorney and ask them to have an engineer or roofer provide a cause and origin opinion. First, its expensive.  Second, it will become even more expensive if the insurer relies solely on the expert without considering whether there is evidence of a hailstorm in that area.

Easy Ways to Avoid Costly Mistakes

Even if you don’t have your own database to evaluate similar claims in the area, similar claims from that roofer, or similar claims from that attorney, there are plenty of databases that reflect evidence of a hail storm, including online search tools (Hailstrike and StormIntel for example) and public records requests to see if anyone else in the neighborhood replaced their roof.

If there is evidence of hail reports in the area, it will be difficult and costly to defend against coverage, and the insurer should use the available technology to limit its loss adjustment expenses moving forward.  If there were not any hail reports, then a cause and origin expert and attorney might be necessary to solidify a defense (wear and tear, marring, and oftentimes late notice).

As the author of the Claims Journal article noted, the only ways to actually stop suspicious claims would be to amend policies and statutes. Otherwise, insurers’ most likely method of defending this cases requires a costly jury trial on the factual issue of causation.

Takeaway:

Remove the emotion and judgment from these cases and just focus on the facts.  How do you focus on the facts?  First, figure out what those facts are.

Next, once you have decided what you need to know about a claim to make a coverage decision, make a checklist, provide some guidelines, use software, or do anything.  Just don’t leave these determinations up to a subjective decision without any structured evaluation prepared by your top management and top attorneys.

Software can make this issue much simpler.  If you want to know more about how software is doing remarkable things to control hail claim litigation, please message me.



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Did this Article Answer Your Homeowners Insurance Question?

If not, then go to our Getting Started page by clicking here, where we have a guide with easy-to-find links to the laws, cases, and articles that will answer your question.

Homeowners Insurance Updates on Heavy Southern Storms, Hurricanes, Homeowners Bill of Rights Passes, and New Blog

Overview:

There’s a lot of insurance news already this summer.  We have had heavy storms, hurricane projections, and the homeowners insurance bill of rights passed the legislature.  Read this article to get the latest news on homeowners insurance in Florida.


Sponsor the First Party Property Insurance Blog

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Its important to note that we are looking for sponsors and guest contributors interested in getting exposure to our thousands of loyal readers and subscribers.

Do you want your company’s name sent to the inbox of insurance company executives and adjusters, sent to thousands of attorneys, and shared with all of the largest insurance consulting companies?

Of course you do. Reach out to us and we can tell you how to reach the tens of thousands of people in the First Party Property Insurance Blog Community.


Getting Started

New to the First Party Property Insurance Blog? Take five minutes to find the answers to your insurance questions by clicking here.


Heavy Storms in the South

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photo from @extremestorms

Over the past week, heavy storms pounded Alabama and Florida’s panhandle. Approximately 35 people died as a result of more than 20 inches of rain in parts of Alabama and Florida.  Officials describe it as the worst flooding in nearly 30 years.  30,000 people in the panhandle had no power.  Governor Scott declared a state of emergency for more than two dozen Florida counties.  Needless to say, rescue workers, government officials, and insurers have had a long weekend.

2014 Hurricane Season Projections

After a quiet 2013, everyone might be wondering how 2014 hurricane’s season may shape up.  According to the Weather Channel, 2014 is estimated to produce 11 named storms. This includes approximately 5 hurricanes, with only 2 of those hurricanes projected to reach a Category 3 or higher.  This is slightly below the average of 12 named storms per year.

photo from http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/8/8b/Hurricane_Fran_sept_1996.jpg

Homeowners’ Bill of Rights Passes

Florida’s legislature recently passed the Homeowners’ Bill of Rights. Last summer, First Party Property Insurance Blog reported on the Bill and its components in this article. Notable parts of the bill preclude post-claim underwriting by limiting insurers’ windows to cancel policies based on application misrepresentations to the first 90 days of coverage. In addition, insurers will be required to provide the Bill of Rights to insureds when they file claims. The Bill also provides DFS with more power to investigate neutral evaluators, mediators, and umpires. Lastly, despite earlier indications that the assignment of benefits/restoration contracting industry would be severly impacted, it appears the only related restrictions in the Bill concern disclosures these contractors need to make in their agreement with the insured homeowners.  Here is a copy of the complete Bill:

Download (PDF, 170KB)

New Blog: Hacking Litigation

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I am also proud to announce that I have launched a new blog, “Hacking Litigation,” here at the CaseGlide website.

The goal: help explain what I learned in my quest to build the CaseGlide Litigation Control System to substantially reduce insurers’ loss ratios through litigation software.

If you follow First Party Property Insurance Blog, then you are clearly passionate about your career, whether it be as a claims manager, general counsel, claims adjuster, or attorney.  I am, too, and homeowners insurance litigation in Florida is about to undergo some major innovation.

There is a movement going on in other legal practice areas.  High level fund managers invested $450M in legal technology innovators in 2013. Clients in many industries are demanding more from their attorneys for a cheaper price.  In response, startup legal technology companies are capturing the knowledge of the best attorneys and developing groundbreaking software to streamline litigation.  Furthermore, these companies are replacing emails and Word documents with web portals so that they can turn that costly information into data that can be used to predict virtually anything about “the next case.” So why is property insurance litigation so far behind?

Not so fast. Hacking Litigation will focus on how the following technology-related trends are impacting property insurance litigation in Florida:

  • litigation project management
  • document assembly software/automation
  • knowledge management
  • alternative fee arrangements
  • data analytics; and
  • transparency

Go check out the site now to learn more about where Hacking Litigation is headed, and how you can be a difference maker at your company or your law firm.

Takeaway:

There is a lot of news to stay updated on here at First Party Property Insurance Blog.  If the hurricane projections hold up, everyone in Florida will be happy except for the adjusters and the lawyers.

In regards to the Homeowners Bill of Rights, we will have to wait and see what the next step is.  As I have said in the past on the assignment of benefits issue, the only change that will work is legislative change. Until then, homeowners insurers need to make sure they are refining the process of handling these claims and cases.  They need to demand better from their lawyers and vendors.

Lastly, I am very excited about the Hacking Litigation Blog, and I hope you enjoy it.  Please take the time to review it and let me know if you have any questions or comments.


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