Tallahassee, Fla. — The following statement regarding Florida Office of Insurance Regulation Commissioner David Altmaier’s presentation on Assignment of Benefits (AOB) abuse at today’s Florida Cabinet Meeting can attributed to Logan McFaddin, regional manager of state government relations for the Property Casualty Insurers Association of America (PCI).
“Today’s presentation by Insurance Commissioner Altmaier is further proof that assignment of benefits abuse is a real threat, and this type of abuse must be stopped in order to protect hardworking Floridians.
“Citizens Property Insurance Corporation announced a net loss of $27 million for 2016 due to increased water loss claims attributed to AOB abuse and litigation costs - the first net loss for Citizens in over a decade. This data is proof that skyrocketing litigation costs are a major problem. Another report by the Office of Insurance Regulation shows that homeowners’ insurance rates could increase 10 percent a year for all Floridians because of AOB abuse.
“Homeowners are not the only victims as some auto glass repair shops are now trying to convince unsuspecting motorists to sign over their insurance benefits. These shops may inflate the glass claim and then turn around and sue the insurance company, often without the policyholder’s knowledge. According to the Florida Department of Financial Services, in 2006, approximately 400 auto glass AOB lawsuits were filed against auto insurers. In 2016, nearly 20,000 lawsuits were filed.
“The bottom line is these shady tactics have to stop. As a member of the Consumer Protection Coalition, we are encouraging Florida lawmakers to end AOB abuse once and for all, so that Floridians can stay in control of their insurance policies.”