Capitol to Courthouse Florida Insurance Report: Friday, December 16

Dec 16, 2011


To go directly to the section of your choice, click on a hyperlink below.  Other hyperlinks to meeting information, bills and news are noted in bold type.




Daily Florida Insurance-Related Events

There are no insurance-related events scheduled for today.



Daily Florida Insurance-Related Bills Filed for 2012


HB 1055 Relating to Life Insurance by State Representative Rachel Burgin

HB 1055 would require life insurance policies or riders to provide for accelerated payment of death benefits to insureds who have been residents of a nursing home for a specified amount of time, and who are expected to remain residents of a nursing home until their death.  The bill would require insurers to offer applicants for life insurance policies or riders providing accelerated death benefit payments, as well as require insurers to offer by specified date riders providing accelerated death benefit payments to insureds holding policies in effect before HB 1055’s effective date.  A policyholder who applies for Medicaid benefits in order to pay for long-term care would be required to determine fair market value of a life insurance policy and spend down all proceeds from converting the policy to pay for long-term care in a specified manner.  A long-term care benefit plan would be required to ensure payments are made to an insured’s estate, and guarantee payment of funeral expense benefits to the insured’s estate, with an exception.  Further, HB 1055 would authorizes the Florida Office of Insurance Regulation, in consultation with the Florida Agency for Health Care Administration and the Florida Department of Children and Family Services  would be required to adopt rules. Insurers also would be required to provide written notifications containing specified information and statements to life insurance policy owners who are of a certain age, or terminally or chronically ill.  The bill provides penalties and remedies under chapter 501, F.S. relating to deceptive and unfair trade practices.  Effective Date: July 1, 2012


SB 1306 relating to Long-Term Care Insurance by Senator Garrett Richter

SB 1306 would define the term “guaranteed renewable” for purposes of the Long-Term Care Insurance Act.  It also would provide that the continuation or renewal of a guaranteed renewable long-term care insurance policy does not result in the making of a new policy or contract or incorporate certain statutory or regulatory changes into the policy or contract.  Effective Date: July 1, 2012  (Identical:  HB 1053)



Daily Insurance-Related News


Florida insurance industry executive Daniel C. O’Leary III Dies

Daniel C. O’Leary, III, passed away suddenly December 13, 2011.


Chinese drywall victims’ lawsuit settled for up to $1 billion

For thousands of Florida homeowners, a settlement with a German maker of defective Chinese drywall that some say could reach $1 billion closes a long and often painful ordeal.


Experts leery of proposed legislative changes to insurance

Insurance providers and customers face a number of changes on coverage and claims if several proposed bills pass during the 2012 Florida legislative session, which begins next month.


Personal injury protection working group releases its final report

The report from the personal injury protection working group does not recommend specific policy changes.


Memorial Jacksonville faces overbilling lawsuit

A key word in Personal Injury Protection Insurance is “protection.”


Blog:  South Florida Earns a Spot on the List of “Judicial Hellholes” for the Ninth Year in a Row

Another year has just about gone by, which means it’s time for South Florida to appear once again on the American Tort Reform Association’s list of “judicial hellholes.”


Medicaid waiver receives Federal approval

The Agency for Health Care Administration secretary gets the OK to continue mandatory Medicaid managed care through June 2014.


Feds turn down state’s request for Medical Loss Ratio insurance waiver

Federal officials said they did not accept the Office of Insurance Regulation’s argument that immediate implementation of an 80 percent medical loss ratio would force some carriers to exit the state and diminish the number of choices people have to buy coverage.


Blog:  Group floats major medical-malpractice legal changes

With supporters saying they want to reduce “defensive medicine,” Florida lawmakers could consider proposals that would dramatically change the medical-malpractice legal system.


Employers Offers 5 percent Workers’ Compensation Discount for Florida Businesses

Some small businesses in Florida will see an automatic 5 percent discount on their workers’ compensation policies through a new program offered by Employers Holdings, Inc.


Associated Industries of Florida taps Tom Feeney as next Chief Executive Officer

Associated Industries of Florida announced Thursday it had tapped former House Speaker Tom Feeney as its next president and chief executive officer.


Florida Supreme Court Says State Needs 72 Judges

Florida’s highest court says the state needs 71 additional trial court judges and one for the Second District Court of Appeal in Lakeland because of an increase in mortgage and civil cases and demands on reduced staff time by a growth in those who self-represent themselves in legal matters.


Struggling homeowners gain favor in key ruling

Homeowners in foreclosure may have a better chance of getting a true trial, instead of a quickie judgment, following a 4th District Court of Appeal decision that requires banks to prove ownership of the note at the time they file for repossession.


Voter registration group sues over elections law

The American Civil Liberties Union of Florida filed a lawsuit Thursday asking that a federal court block new restrictions on third-party groups that run voter registration drives.


State refuses to repay backyard citrus owners in canker fight until Legislature OKs funds

More than 100,000 South Florida households that lost trees to the fight against the citrus canker disease will have to wait longer for compensation – if they receive it at all.


Senate report:  Ban or regulate internet sweepstakes cafes

Confusion in the law has led to uneven enforcement across the state, as some counties choose to arrest operators and shut down the stores that offer Internet time for sweepstakes cards that are played out on computers featuring casino games.


Allstate raising Texas homeowner rates beginning in January

Allstate Insurance is raising premiums for homeowners coverage in January, with increases in the Dallas-Fort Worth area ranging from 3.5 percent to 7 percent under a rate plan filed with the Texas Department of Insurance.


State Farm changes logo for first time since ’50s

State Farm is changing its logo for the first time since 1953.



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