Insurance Commissioner Issues Emergency Order Providing Relief To Policyholders
Contact: Beth Scott
Tallahassee – Insurance Commissioner Kevin McCarty has issued an Emergency Order prohibiting insurers from cancelling or non renewing policies covering dwellings or residential properties damaged by Hurricane Dennis.
As a result of Hurricane Dennis, Governor Jeb Bush issued a state of emergency and requested by letter that President George W. Bush declare an expedited Major Declaration for the state and requested individual assistance for the counties covered by the Emergency Order.
This Emergency Order, effective July 10, is similar to action taken in 2004 by the Florida Cabinet and later codified into law by the 2005 Legislature in SB 1486 to assist those impacted by damage from hurricanes during and for 90 days after repairing their properties.
The following counties are covered by the Order: Escambia, Santa Rosa, Okaloosa, Walton, Bay, Gulf, Franklin, Wakulla, Calhoun, Jackson, Washington and Holmes.
Preliminary damage estimates from a number of hurricane models indicate expected damages ranging from $1.2 billion to $5.5 billion.
Hurricane damage has resulted in closing of businesses and financial institutions, suspending mail service, displacing people from their homes, loss of personal belongings and temporary loss of employment.
This Order is being issued pursuant to Sec. 627.4133(2)(d), Florida Statutes, which authorizes the Commissioner of Insurance Regulation to issue an Order invoking the provisions of this subsection upon the declaration of an emergency pursuant to Section 252.36, Florida Statutes.
"The Florida Cabinet (through previous Emergency Rules) and the Florida Legislature have provided an efficient way to protect the policyholders of this state that have had their property damaged as a result of hurricane or wind loss," McCarty said.