Senate Bill 2264 passed yesterday on a 37-1 vote, with Senator Rudy Garcia casting the lone "No." A corresponding bill must pass the House before the legislation can be sent to the governor.
Key points from the Senate legislation that passed:
- Certain statements in public adjuster’s advertisement or solicitation would be considered deceptive or misleading and a violation of § 626.9541.
- Defines “written advertisement” as including only newspapers, magazines, flyers, brochures and mailers.
- All written advertisements require a disclaimer.
- Limits compensation for a supplemental or reopened claim to no more than 20% of the supplemental or reopened claim payment.
- Public adjuster would ensure that notice of the claim and a copy of the contract be provided to the insurer.
- Public adjuster cannot obstruct or prevent an insurer or its adjuster from communicating directly with the insured.
- Provides an exception to the prohibition of a licensed contractor from adjusting a claim, if he is asked by the homeowner or insurer to discuss or explain a bid for repair, and is doing so for the usual and customary fees for the work to be performed.
- The above points apply only to residential and condominium association policies.
In order to qualify for a public adjuster license, a public adjuster apprentice shall complete a minimum of 8 hours of continuing education specific to the practice of public adjusting, 2 hours of which must relate to ethics.
A public adjuster contract must contain:
- Full name, permanent business address, and license number of the public adjuster;
- Full name of the public adjusting firm;
- Insured’s full name and street address;
- Brief description of the loss;
- Percentage of compensation for the public adjuster’s services;
- The type of claim (including emergency, nonemergency or supplemental claim);
- Signatures of the public adjuster and the insured;
- Date that the contract was signed;
- A copy of the contract must be remitted to the insurer within 30 days.
A claim, supplemental claim, or reopened claim for damage caused by windstorm or hurricane is barred unless notice of the claim, supplemental claim or reopened claim was given to the insurer within 3 years after the hurricane first made landfall or the windstorm caused the covered damage. this
- Only applies to personal lines residential coverage.
- Only applies to hurricane or windstorm damage claims.
- Defines supplemental and reopen claims as "any additional claim for recovery from the insurer for losses from the same hurricane or windstorm for which the insurer has previously adjusted pursuant to the initial claim.”
You can read the entire bill by clicking on the image below: