Large Hurricane Deductibles for Condominium associations will be in effect for the Hurricane Season
The Florida Supreme Court, finally made its decision and it is not good news fr policy holders. The Court recently rejected a condominium association’s arguments relating to five important questions of law in QBE Insurance Corporation v. Chalfonte Condominium Association Inc., Case No. SC09-441 (Fla. May 31, 2012).
While the analysis and consequences of this thirty-two page decision cannot be fairly summarized in a single post, one important point that will adversely effect many associations is the negative response to the fourth certified question:
Does an insurer’s failure to comply with the language and type-size requirements established by Florida Statute §627.701(4)(a) render a noncompliant hurricane deductible provision in an insurance policy void and unenforceable? Any policy that contains a separate hurricane deductible must on its face include in boldfaced type no smaller than 18 points the following statement: "THIS POLICY CONTAINS A SEPARATE DEDUCTIBLE FOR HURRICANE LOSSES, WHICH MAY RESULT IN HIGH OUT-OF-POCKET EXPENSES TO YOU." A policy containing a coinsurance provision applicable to hurricane losses must on its face include in boldfaced type no smaller than 18 points the following statement: "THIS POLICY CONTAINS A CO-PAY PROVISION THAT MAY RESULT IN HIGH OUT-OF-POCKET EXPENSES TO YOU.
Florida Hurricane Insurance Laws
By Stephanie Ellen, eHow Contributor
Florida Hurricane Insurance Laws thumbnail
The aftermath of a hurricane can be devastating.
When a hurricane hits, the consequences can be devastating. Hurricanes are the most destructive storms on Earth and can cause billions of dollars of damage. Insuring against windstorm damage in a hurricane-prone state like Florida can be problematic. However, there are laws in place to protect the homeowner and allow fair access to insurance.
By law, property insurance policies that cover homes in Florida must include coverage for windstorm damage caused by a hurricane. When you apply for homeowner's insurance, the company must provide you with a price for windstorm coverage. Windstorm, or hurricane, coverage covers losses that occur as a result of a hurricane and includes damage to the interior and exterior of a building. By law, hurricane insurance must also include damage caused by dust, snow, sleet or rain.
Florida law mandates that insurance companies must give discounts to homeowners who install wind-resistant features on their homes. A second law requires insurance companies to notify their policyholders of the available discounts so that they can take advantage of the premium reductions. One example of a feature that would reduce your hurricane insurance premium is the installation of windstorm shutters. Discounts can add up to a 42 percent reduction in the cost of your homeowner's insurance.
If you have property insurance in Florida, your insurer is allowed by law to include a separate deductible for the hurricane portion of your policy. The deductible for the windstorm portion is set by law. For homes up to $100,000, the mandated maximum deductible allowed is 2 percent of the home's value. For homes worth $100,000 to $500,000, the deductible can be set as high as 5 percent, and for homes valued at more than $500,000, there is no limit to the amount of the deductible.
Citizens Property Insurance
Citizens Property Insurance Corporation was created by the state of Florida for the purpose of insuring homes for people who can't get insurance from private companies due to high risk factors. Citizens Property Insurance is Florida's largest property insurance company and covers 1.2 million homes, as of January 2011. In addition to Citizens, the state of Florida also created the Florida Hurricane Catastrophe Fund to give insurance companies a source of funding in the event of a catastrophe.
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