Attorney Fees Drive Up Property Insurance Costs for Homeowners

Dear Editor,

It was no surprise to see that the rising cost of property insurance was one of the key topics of the gubernatorial debate last week between Governor Ron DeSantis and Charlie Crist.

Florida’s insurance marketplace was already suffering due to a variety of reasons, and more and more consumers were being hit with notices that fees were going up or that policies were being cancelled.

One of the things that Governor DeSantis pointed to as a major cost driver for insurance policy holders is exorbitant attorney fees. 

Few people realize that in Florida, we have a system of one-way attorney fees.  That sounds great in concept because it puts insurers on the hook for picking up the tab for a policy-holder’s attorney fees if that policy-holder has to sue his insurer for failure to perform.

However, it has gotten out of control.  Now, many times, a policy-holder is prodded to sue, and the judgment awarded ends up being tiny relative to the outrageous attorney fees being awarded at the same time.  Every other policy-holder has to pick up the bill for that with higher premium.

The governor made it clear this has to stop, and I support the governor.  He’s been right on every policy issue since he’s been in office, and I think he’s right on this one too.

Ashton Norton
1705 Carabelle Beach Drive
Carabelle, FL  32322

3 Responses to "Attorney Fees Drive Up Property Insurance Costs for Homeowners"

  1. This letter misses a key fact. Those attorney’s fees only get paid if a jury finds that the insurer failed to pay. In most of these cases, the only way the person that has been paying for insurance to get anything from the insurance company is to sue. There is one quick and wasy way for insurance companies to avoid paying large attorney’s fees…..Stop trying to stiff your paying customers. Florida is plagued by shady insurance companies due to non-existent regulation because of the insurance industry controlling state government. Combine that with hurricanes doing extensive damage to coastal communities, and you have companies designed to take in fees and pay shareholders and executives heavily, and when the storm hits, deny payments and then declare bankruptcy so leadership can pocket all that profit and move on to the next scam.

  2. If that is the case that he supports repeal of one way fees, why wasn’t this part of SB2D/4D? They kicked the can as usual so they could keep their big donors from the Bar happy and now we have an industry in total collapse because of the abuse that will continue from Ian. Ian is the new Irma ATM machine for all the crooks. Had the governor and Legislature taken proper action back in May we wouldn’t have the citizens of this great state facing 4-figure increases again in insurance premiums. Nothing tells me that they will actually fix it. Their goal is to keep the industry on life support, keep making Floridians paying unaffordable rates all to fund the corruption and abuse that keep these donors happy.

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