This past month, Governor DeSantis signed into law the Florida Bill Senate Bill 76. After years of fighting for property insurance litigation reform, this bill finally sets new standards that will help curve the rising number of lawsuits being filed. On top of new property insurance reform, another bill – Senate Bill 630 -was passed that includes some needed updates for Community Associations themselves. Below are some of the highlights from each of the new bills passed in Florida:
Senate Bill 76: Property Insurance Reform Highlights
· Reduces the claims deadline on all claims to two years from the date of loss. While supplemental claims will have an additional year.
· Changes the eligibility, rate glide path, and actuarially sound rate indication for Citizens Property Insurance Corp.
· The recovery of attorney fees and costs contingent on obtaining a judgment for indemnity that exceeds the pre-suit offer made by the insurance company.
· Prior to a lawsuit, a claimant must now provide written notice of intent to file litigation at least 10 business days before filing suit under the subject insurance policy. The notice must also include an itemized list of damages and attorney fees. Upon receipt of the notice, the insurer has the ability to review and evaluate the claimed dispute and respond in writing within 10 business days.
· The bill now prohibits soliciting by contractors, including both in-person and electronic solicitation (phone, text, email, etc.) and prohibits contractors from offering residential property owners inducements in exchange for allowing them to inspect the roof.
Senate Bill 630: Community Association Updates Highlights
· There is now a term limit of eight consecutive years for board members unless an exception is approved by two-thirds of unit owners.
· Addresses insurance subrogation, that insurers now pursue the party at fault to recover money paid out on an association claim that was not the association’s fault.
· Clarification that associations’ emergency powers extended to a health emergency, not just a natural disaster. This now allows for board members to attend virtual meetings to conduct vital business operations.
· Condominium associations can now use the same pre-suit mediation process for dispute resolution that is used by homeowner’s associations. Will help reduce cost for both parties.
Do you still have questions regarding the new bills passed? Call us today to speak with a licensed agent who can answer any of your questions. 727-360-8190