Citizens Property Insurance Corporation’s Board of Governors recommended an across-the-board rate increase of up to 12% for 2022-2023 after board members expressed concern over Citizens’ continued growth and inability to slow it down.

Citizens staff recommended a statewide increase of 11% for policies renewing from August 1, 2022, to December 31, 2022, and 12% for policies renewing after January 1, 2023, to comply with new caps put in place by the Florida Legislature in 2021. The recommendations were presented to the Office of Insurance Regulation on Thursday, March 31 at a virtual rate hearing.

While FIRM continues to emphasize the inequity in the rates paid by Monroe County compared to the rest of the state (counties with less stringent building codes), we are now faced with 1% increases every year until the cap reaches 15%.

CAT Models

FIRM opposes the rate increases based on the method for interpreting the rate indications of the 4 hurricane models. Two rate filings ago Citizens began to put more emphasis on the two highest hurricane models rather than the median of the four models. The reasoning cited by Citizens for this is adverse selection and increased litigation due to the AOB legislation. There is no adverse selection if there are no choices such as in Monroe County, furthermore, Monroe County does not contribute to the AOB problem. This skews rate indications higher and is not a true blended rate.

AOB Abuse

FIRM opposes across the board rate increases to cover Citizens expenses for the litigation of Assignment of Benefit (AOB) cases. Monroe County has very few policies of the type that contribute to AOB abuse. Instead of painting everyone with the same brush, Citizens should penalize all multi-peril policyholders with a litigation surcharge to bring home the point to each policyholder that everyone pays a price for insurance fraud.

Affordability

Finally FIRM reminds Citizens and the OIR that in section 1 of the statute enabling Citizens, the word affordable is used 6 times. FIRM is once again requesting a closer look be given at Monroe County and the need for a carve-out and a reinstatement of the 10% rate cap.

Monroe County has the strictest building code in the state. Local government building departments strenuously enforce this code, and residents have taken the steps necessary to protect their property and mitigate their losses. However, the ever-changing methods of analyzing the model indications, including going so far as to hide one of the models, takes none of this into consideration. It is unjust to continue to penalize homeowners by ignoring actuarial calculations and to ignore indicated rate decreases and arbitrarily increase to the highest allowable percentage.

What you can do to help

Please click the button below for a pre-formatted letter to the Office of Insurance Regulation. The OIR is accepting public comment through 5 pm, April 14.

Please add one sentence at the beginning stating your name and where you live, and add your name at the end of the email.

Under Florida law, written communications to the Office are public record; this would include email addresses. They are subject to public disclosure, including being available to the public and media if requested. For more information visit the Office of Insurance Regulation’s Internet Privacy Policy.

 

Email Office of Insurance Regulation

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