Insurance-Related Bills Filed for Consideration During the 2012 Florida Regular Legislative Session
Oct 7, 2011
The following insurance-related bills have been filed for consideration during the 2012 Florida Regular Legislative Session, which is scheduled to begin January 10, 2012.
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HB 119 relating to Motor Vehicle Personal Injury Protection Insurance by State Representative Jim Boyd
(Compare to SB 254)
HB 119 would revise provisions relating to crash reports. Should it become law, HB 119 would authorize an officer to testify at trial or provide an affidavit. The bill also would revise requirements relating to the form that must be submitted by providers. In addition, HB 119 would revise provisions relating to payment and would provide that time for paying or denying a claim is tolled during investigation of a fraudulent act. The bill also would specify when benefits are not payable and would provide that a claimant violating certain provisions is not entitled to payment. HB 119 would authorize the recovery of payments. Should it become law, HB 119 would forbid those failing to comply with certain provisions from billing injured person or insured. The bill also would provide that an insurer has the right to conduct reasonable investigations. In addition, the bill would revise the reimbursement limitation. HB 119 would require a provider to ensure that an insured understands services provided. The bill also would revise discovery provisions. The bill would authorize an insurer to provide a discount to an insured selecting a preferred provider. Finally, it would authorize nonpayment for nonemergency services by performed by a non-preferred provider in certain circumstances. Effective Date: July 1, 2012.
SB 134 relating to Advertising of Legal and Medical Referral Services by Senator Gwen Margolis
SB 134 would require that advertising from a medical or lawyer referral service for services related to motor vehicle accidents comply with certain requirements regarding content and would require that advertisements or unsolicited written communications from certain legal referral services for services related to motor vehicle accidents comply with the Supreme Court of Florida’s Rules Regulating The Florida Bar. Should it become law, SB 134 would require that published advertisements from a lawyer referral service be filed with The Florida Bar along with an affidavit meeting certain criteria. The bill also would prohibit lawyer referral services from conditioning participation in the service based on certain criteria. In addition, SB 134 would prohibit a medical referral service from making referrals only to a medical clinic or health care provider in which the referral service has a financial or ownership interest. Effective Date: July 1, 2012.
HB 187 relating to Traffic Safety by State Representative Irving Slosberg
HB 187 would prohibit the use of handheld cellular telephones and other electronic communications devices by drivers under 18 years of age and persons driving school buses. The bill also would provide for a voluntary check-off on driver’s license applications to permit contributions to the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety. In addition, HB 187 would require the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles to issue a distinctive placard when issuing or reissuing a driver’s license to a person under a certain age and would require such person to display the placard at all times while operating a motor vehicle. The bill also would restrict the number of certain passengers permitted in a vehicle operated by a person under a certain age. Effective Date: October 1, 2012.
HB 211 relating to Property and Casualty Insurance by State Representative Larry Metz
(Identical to HB 4059)
HB 211 would repeal the requirement that the Florida Financial Services Commission provide an annual report to the Legislature consisting of specified data and analysis related to aggregate net probable maximum losses, financing options and potential assessments of the Florida Hurricane Catastrophe Fund and Citizens Property Insurance Corporation. Effective Date: July 1, 2012.
HB 243 relating to Expert Testimony by State Representative Larry Metz
(Identical to SB 378)
HB 245 provides that a witness qualified as an expert by knowledge, skill, experience, training or education may testify in the form of an opinion as to the facts at issue in the case. The bill would also require courts to interpret and apply principles of expert testimony in conformity with specified U.S. Supreme Court decisions and would subject pure opinion testimony to such requirements. HB 243 also provides that facts or data that are otherwise inadmissible may not be disclosed to a jury by a proponent of the opinion or inference unless a court determines that the probative value of the facts or data in assisting the jury to evaluate an expert’s opinion substantially outweighs the prejudicial effect. Effective Date: July 1, 2012.
HB 245 relating to Depopulation Programs of Citizens Property Insurance Corporation by State Representative Jim Boyd
HB 245 would provide that eligible surplus lines insurers may participate, in the same manner and on the same terms as an authorized insurer, in depopulation, take-out or keep-out programs relating to policies removed from Citizens Property Insurance Corporation (“Citizens”). The bill also would provide certain exceptions, conditions and requirements relating to participation by surplus lines insurer in Citizens’ depopulation, take-out or keep-out programs. Should it become law, HB 245 would authorize information from underwriting files and confidential files to be released by Citizens to specified entities that are considering writing or underwriting risks insured by Citizens. In addition, HB 245 specifies that only Citizens’ transfer of policy file to an insurer, as opposed to the transfer of any file, would change a file’s public record status. Effective Date: July 1, 2012.
HB 4019 relating to Repeal of Workers’ Compensation Reporting Requirement by State Representative Bryan Nelson
(Identical to SB 140)
HB 4019 would repeal the provision relating to the duty of the Florida Department of Financial Services to make an annual report on the administration of ch. 440, F.S., Workers’ Compensation Law, to specified officials. Effective Date: July 1, 2012
HB 4053 relating to Corporation Not For Profit Self-Insurance Funds by State Representative Jeff Clemens
HB 4053 would delete the requirement that a participating member of a corporation not for profit self-insurance fund receive at least a specified percentage of its revenues from certain governmental sources. Effective Date: July 1, 2012.
SPB 7000 relating to Open Government Sunset Review/Insurance Claim Data Exchange Information/Past Due Child Support by the Senate Committee on Children, Families, and Elder Affairs
SPB 7000 would amend provisions relating to a public-records exemption for insurance claim data exchange information used for identifying parents who owe past due child support and would save the exemption from repeal under the Open Government Sunset Review Act, as well as remove the scheduled repeal of the exemption. Effective Date: October 1, 2012.
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