Ver Ploeg & Lumpkin, P.A. - Insurance Dispute
Call Us - 305-577-3996
Main Menu
February 2011 Archives

Legislative session nears, insurance debate heats up

The Florida Legislature will convene next Monday, and media outlets are anxious to get some movement, finally, on Senate Bill 408, the insurance bill. After weeks of hearing the pros and cons of the bill's provisions, it may be a refreshing change to hear open debate about claims payment and sinkhole coverage, among other issues.

Florida politicians to battle mandatory health insurance law

It is usually policyholders and health-care providers that must go to battle over health insurance. But many Florida lawmakers have been busy fighting within the health insurance arena, by attacking the federal law requiring health insurance coverage for all Americans. Many politicians, including Governor Rick Scott, have found the health-insurance mandate to overstep the role of government in the lives of Floridians.

Long-term care coverage pitfalls (conc.)

This is the last in a short series of posts about long-term care insurance. The insurance is supposed to cover the costs of home care or a nursing facility when the policyholder becomes disabled. Many insurance companies underestimated their costs when they introduced the coverage, and they've pulled out of the market. Meanwhile, policyholders are getting frustrated when claims are denied or delayed, or when they realize the terms of their policy aren't quite what they thought. A recent article highlighted some of the issues and posed some thoughtful responses to common questions.

Long-term care coverage pitfalls (cont.)

In our last post, we were talking about long-term care insurance. The insurance has an interesting, and perhaps undeserved, reputation, thanks to headlines about companies pulling out of the business and reports of policyholders' denied or delayed claims. A recent article laid out some ways to ensure a long-term care insurance policy will actually cover the expenses associated with long-term care.

Long-term care coverage pitfalls

Long-term care insurance has received a lot of press coverage lately. Insurers are getting out of the market; companies holding on are asking for double-digit rate hikes. And as that big chunk of Americans, the Baby Boomers, reach retirement age, industry insiders were hoping more people would buy long-term care policies for themselves or for their Boomer parents. The market conditions have put a damper on those hopes. Market conditions may also be responsible for an increase in long-term care insurance claim denials.

OIR hears testimony on 28% rate hike

The Florida Office of Insurance Regulation heard testimony at a public hearing this week regarding State Farm Florida's proposed rate increase. The insurance company is asking that the OIR approve an average 28 percent increase for its homeowner policyholders in order to cover the rising costs of non-catastrophic claims.

Bill proposes more deregulation of commercial insurance (p. 2)

In our last post, we were talking about the "file and use" and "use and file" rate approval rules. Insurance companies in Florida may elect to use either, but the industry complains that the "use and file" rule is meaningless, because the Office of Insurance Regulation rarely approves the rate change. Insurers must then reimburse their policyholders for premiums collected at the proposed, but disapproved rate.

Bill proposes more deregulation of commercial insurance

Last year, Florida lawmakers took a step toward deregulating commercial motor vehicle insurance; this year, some legislators hope to go even farther. A bill that passed out of the Senate Banking and Insurance Committee this week would allow insurance companies to offer a number of different commercial insurance products before the rates are approved by the Office of Insurance Regulation.

Holocaust survivors protest insurer at golf tournament

An international insurance company is sponsoring a golf tournament in South Florida this weekend, and a group of Holocaust survivors and their families are planning to be there. Not in the stands, though; they plan to be protesting. The company, Allianz, owes them thousands of dollars for insurance claims made by family members who died at the hands of the Nazis. The insurer disagrees.

'Turtle' settlement slows construction, flood insurance

A settlement between environmental groups and the Federal Emergency Management Agency should put the brakes on development in Florida's hurricane-vulnerable coastal areas, according to the organizations. In their lawsuit against the federal agency, the National Wildlife Federation and Florida Wildlife Federation had alleged that managers at FEMA's National Flood Insurance Program failed to study specific environmental impacts of coastal developments before approving flood insurance.