Florida Task Force Issues Final Report on Citizens’ Claims Handling

June 16, 2008

The Task Force on Citizens Property Insurance Claims Handling and Resolution, created during the 2007 Legislative Special Session, issued its third and final report.

In addition to the June 11 submission, the task force will release a supplemental report, sometime before its statutory authority expires in November, after working with Citizens to understand why so many consumers asked to have their claim for damages from the 2004-2005 hurricanes re-opened in 2007. The task force will also examine the results of these requests.

The new study is in direct response to questions raised by the governor and the chief financial officer regarding the need for the Florida Hurricane Catastrophe Fund to issue bonds to raise $625 million to pay claims from the 2004-2005 hurricanes that were just filed or re-opened in 2007.

Citizens is not the only insurer that received and paid new and re-opened claims. Most insurers who wrote coverage in the areas hit by Hurricane Wilma in 2005 are also impacted by the same situation.

Since May 21, 2007, the task force reviewed and monitored Citizens closure of its 2004/2005 hurricane claims; the implementation of procedures to handle future catastrophic events; the implementation of programs relating to the training of insurance agents, consumer services, administration of policies, and claims operations; and the establishment of its Office of the Internal Auditor.

Source: Florida Chief Financial Officer

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