Plus, changes afoot at Citizens
The search is expected to begin later this month for a new Florida insurance commissioner following the resignation of David Altmaier along with his two deputy commissioners, there’s a new report on Florida insurance companies’ policy numbers, and the state’s Citizens Property Insurance Corporation is embarking on a new method of resolving disputed claims without going to court. It’s all in this week’s Property Insurance News.
Altmaier Resignation: David Altmaier, who has served as Florida’s insurance commissioner since 2016, submitted his letter of resignation to Gov. DeSantis right after the special legislative session on property insurance ended in mid-December. The resignation was effective December 28 and did not include his future plans. The former insurance agent had been working with the Florida Office of Insurance Regulation (OIR) since 2008 and served as president of the National Association of Insurance Commissioners in 2021. His resignation followed those of Deputy Commissioner of Property & Casualty Susanne Murphy and Deputy Commissioner for Life & Health John Reilly.
The Governor and Cabinet sitting as the Financial Services Commission is expected to formally start a search for Altmaier’s replacement at its January 17 meeting. By law, both the Governor and CFO Jimmy Patronis must agree on a replacement.
New Statewide Policy Data: OIR has released a third quarter 2022 update of statewide commercial and personal lines property insurance data submitted by insurance companies and groups. The data is available on OIR’s website here through its QUASR (Quarterly and Supplemental Reporting System) system as two downloadable Excel documents. It includes statewide policyholder counts, policies cancelled/non-renewed, total policy values, total direct premium written, and total exposure in both summary form for the 170 parent companies (and the detail for the 470 total parent & affiliated companies) authorized to write personal and commercial lines property insurance in Florida.
Citizens Insurance Changes: As the result of Florida’s tumultuous property insurance market, the state’s Citizens Property Insurance Corporation in 2022 saw its policy count increase almost 50%. Citizens ended the year with 1,145,178 policies, up from 759,305 at the end of 2021. It added about 19,000 policies in December alone, with that trend expected to continue. COO Kelly Booten said Citizens could have 1.6 million policies and a 22% market share by the end of 2023, with a potential exposure of $600 billion.
In other news, Citizens has gotten OIR approval to contract with the State of Florida Division of Administrative Hearings (DOAH) to provide alternative dispute resolution services for claims that were either denied because of a determination of no coverage or contract limitations regarding the coverage amount. The change will be as a new endorsement on non-commercial policy lines forms and is effective February 1, 2023, for new and renewal business.
Meanwhile, the Citizens Board of Governors voted last month to wait until March to make any changes to the carrier’s roof age eligibility requirement. Staff had recommended reducing those thresholds from 25 years to 20 years for soft roof types and from 50 years to 40 years for hard roofs. The Board did enact other product changes that include a higher wind/hail deductible.
LMA Newsletter of 1-9-23