April 2022

April 2022 • Florida Pool Prosm 25 INSURANCE UPDATE responsible for 12%. The firm has declined to name those contractors. CaseGlide is a maker of litigation management software, which also tracks claims disputes, they reported that the number of new litigated claims for the 17 largest P/C insurers in Florida were just under 4,600 in January – a 37% increase from December. That followed an almost steady decline from July’s high of 6,633 litigated claims, the company said. Miami-Dade County represents 23% of new litigated cases, with Broward County at 17%, Hillsborough County at 7%, Palm Beach County at 6%, and Orange County, home of Orlando, at 6%. Given the pain being felt by consumers because of staggering rate increases and company insolvencies, many believed that the Legislature would do something! Recently released year-end financials show that Florida's property insurers, for the third year in a row, lost more than $1.6 billion. Astonishingly, those results do not include the financial losses from St. Johns Insurance and Avatar Insurance. St. Johns Insurance Co. was declared insolvent in January 2022 and two weeks later Florida regulators took steps to begin liquidating Tampa-based Avatar Property & Casualty Insurance Co., making it the second carrier this year to falter and the sixth in the last 30 months. Avatar’s receivership is expected to have the state-run Citizens Property Insurance Corp. taking the book of business and other insurers making takeout offers in the next few months, one executive said. Avatar and St. Johns are two of seven insurers in recent months to suspend new business or to non-renew thousands of policies in Florida. Others have asked for double-digit rate increases. Industry insiders and CEOs have warned for months that Florida’s insurance market is in crisis, with most carriers seeing significant losses from hurricanes, roof claims and litigation expenses. The latest insolvency will likely require the Florida Insurance Guaranty Association to cover Avatar’s outstanding claims. It’s unclear if that will result in another assessment by FIGA on member insurance companies. After the St. Johns liquidation, FIGA approved a 1.3% assessment on premium for carriers, an assessment that will be passed on to Florida policyholders. United Property and Casualty Insurance Co., which has ranked in the top 10 homeowners insurers in Florida with more than 180,000 policyholders, stopped writing new policies in Florida on Jan. 1, 2022, according to a memo

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