If there were MASSIVE changes set to occur to your Florida automobile insurance coverage, wouldn’t you expect your insurance company to tell you about them? Wouldn’t you expect your insurance company – you know, the one you pay premiums to every month – you know, the one you are expecting to have your back and protect you from harm when you are involved in Florida car accident – to explain these MASSIVE changes to you? Wouldn’t your insurance company to give you the opportunity—after explaining the MASSIVE potential reductions in benefits to you – to make alterations to your insurance coverage so that you could avoid any problems? Governor Rick Scott and his cabinet apparently don’t think so. Insurancejournal.com is reporting that the Florida cabinet has passed an emergency rule that seems to be intended to provide cover for Florida auto insurance carriers – who have been well aware of these changes since they were passed by the Florida Legislature at the insurance industry’s urging last March. The emergency rule calls for the creation of a form that the insurance companies can send to their customers explaining the changes. No explanation was provided in the story for why the insurance companies couldn’t prepare their own explanation for their own customers. Under the new law that takes effect on January 1, 2013, many Florida drivers and their passengers will see their Personal Injury Protection (PIP benefits) reduced to $2,500.00 or zero, unless certain procedures are followed. This amounts to either a $7,500.00, or $10,000.00 reduction in benefits. Most PIP customers have not seen, and will not see, a reduction in premium bills to offset this reduction in benefits. The insurance companies sought the emergency rule because they claimed they didn’t know what to tell their customers, and could result in them being sued it they told their customers the wrong thing. Apparently, they hope that the form generated as a result of this emergency rule will keep them from being sued. Having read the new law, I think there is going to be a TON of litigation over this confusing and clearly unfair law – regardless of this emergency rule. Because the insurance companies refused to do it, I wrote a book describing the changes in plain language. You can download a copy of the book at...Read More »
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