Consumers are clearly not the focus of the current group that was elected to the legislature. Insurance companies and large corporations seem to be the acknowledged constituents for them.
The Sun Sentinel just reported on some of the bills that look like they could pass and how they stack up against the best interests of consumers (voters):
- Insurance companies can charge as much as they want to charge for coverage of sinkhole damages or they can drop sinkhole coverage altogether. Great news for insurance companies – not so much for consumers living on a sand bar.
- Allow insurance companies to raise rates without any regulatory review whatsoever in order to cover costs of advertising and agent commissions. So, the costs for selling you and me the product are going to be borne by, well, you and me.
- Shorten the time in which policyholders can file claims under insurance contracts. Currently, consumers have (5) years to file a claim or a lawsuit. The new legislation will shorten that time to (3) years for hurricane claims and (2) years for sinkhole damage (assuming your carrier is nice enough to provide that coverage).
- Allow insurance companies who insure both your home and your auto to drop coverage as long as they give you notice 90 days in advance. Legislators say this will invite at least one, as yet undisclosed insurance company, into our state.
Legislators say they are trying to ease the “insurance crisis” and lure insurance companies to Florida. I am not at all sure when we had an “insurance crisis” develop, but I have an idea for legislators:
Why not just pass a bill that unregulates insurance premiums, provides for consumers to pay all overhead costs of the insurance companies and permits insurance companies to deny claims whether they have a valid basis to do so or not.
Should you be concerned about what your legislators are doing to or for you in Tallahassee, visit them at “find your elected officials” and be sure to stop by and see the Governor at “contact Rick Scott”.