Following an extremely active and devastating storm season in 2004-2005, Florida legislation urged homeowners to upgrade and improve their home safety against windstorms. As a result, homeowners insurance companies were required to offer discounts to residences complying with storm-proofing upgrades and features.
Hundreds of thousands of Florida homeowners reaped the benefits of these discounts and have
luckily enjoyed somewhat quiet hurricane seasons, until the most recent Hurricane Irma. However,
as the number of discount claims rose, insurance companies began to complain it was costing them too much money and too many fraudulent reports were being submitted.
In 2008 and 2009, new legislative changes made it much more difficult to qualify for these discounts, and also imposed penalties on home inspection companies falsifying reports to qualify non-compliant houses. After these changes, many homeowners saw their policy premiums spike as much as 60% in some cases when they were told they were no longer eligible for certain discounts.
Reevaluations of policies have led to these premium increases, and the new legislation also allows insurance companies to hire their own home inspection companies to perform the analysis
– a move many consider potentially unfair. Some fear insurance-hired inspectors are more apt to side with the insurance company to keep their business.
If you recently had your Florida homeowners insurance policy reviewed and have lost your rightful discounts, you may need to speak with an experienced Florida homeowners insurance attorney. The recent changes to the Florida homeowners insurance discounts can be confusing and frustrating to fight alone. If you are wrongfully denied discounts and need help providing evidence of your eligibility, an attorney can help.