Recent Changes Made to Citizens
Effective July 1, 2016,
Citizens Property Insurance, the state's largest insurer, is making policy changes that will impact the handling of claims – especially claims for emergency repairs. These changes, which will take effect on or after July 1, 2016 for new or renewed policies.
Policy changes include:
- The policyholder must take emergency measures to prevent further damage, and the policy includes only what is reasonable and necessary up to $3,000 or 1 percent of their coverage limit, unless Citizens approves additional measures.
- Citizens can inspect and adjust the claim. Permanent repairs cannot take place until 72 hours after Citizens has been notified, or the loss is inspected by Citizens, or verbal or written approval is given by Citizens property insurance.
In Florida, there's a rapidly growing scam in which shady home repair vendors pressure homeowners to sign away the rights and benefits of their insurance policies as a condition of performing work. This has led to Citizens and other insurance companies to pay for remodeling work that was not caused by the actual event that caused the claim. If the insurance company refuses to pay, they risk having to defend a lawsuit filed, not by the homeowner, but by the vendor, their adjuster, and attorney.
We've actually had phone calls from people being non-renewed by their home insurance company asking us for help because they still have an open claim 2 years after the event.
And if Citizens has been approved for these changes, you can bet a dollar to a donut, that the other Florida Insurance companies are already lining up to file similar changes to their policies.
If you have suffer a loss that needs emergency repairs, here are some do's and don'ts:
- Do what you can to prevent further damage- turn off the water- put out the fire!
- Do contact your insurance company and notify them as soon as possible.
- Don't make repairs until you discuss it with your claims adjuster- wait at least 72 hours.
- Don't sign away your rights and benefits by Assigning them to a home repair vendor.
- Do contact Cronin Insurance Agency if you have any questions- we'll be happy to help.
If you're interested in getting a quote, click below: