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Florida's New Insurance Law and Potential Bad Faith Litigation

June 02, 2023 1:46 PM | Anonymous

Originally posted by jdsupra.com on June 2, 2023

It has been five months since the Florida Legislature took a metaphorical blowtorch to the Florida first-party property insurance litigation landscape. When signing Florida Senate Bill 2A, Governor DeSantis specifically stated that “this bill reins in the incentive to litigate.” While the full impact of Florida Senate Bill 2A is still unknown as it could take years to reshape and/or reduce the volume of property insurance litigation, its elimination of one-way attorneys’ fees will likely change whether and how property insurance cases are litigated. Specifically, it may open the door for plaintiffs to pursue different types of litigation more actively against insurers, including bad faith litigation.

Florida Senate Bill 2A significantly changed the timelines for insurers to adjust and handle claims.1 An insurer does not have to strictly comply with the new time limits if the failure to comply is due to “factors beyond the control of the insurer.”2 § 627.70131(5)(a). Additionally, the insurers’ timing requirements are tolled “upon the failure of a policyholder or a representative of the policyholder to provide material claims information requested by the insurer within 10 days after the request was received. The tolling period ends upon the insurer’s receipt of the requested information. Tolling under this paragraph applies only to requests sent by the insurer to the policyholder or a representative of the policyholder at least 15 days before the insurer is required to pay or deny the claim or a portion of the claim.” § 627.70131(8)(b).

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