Originally published by Consumer Protection Coalition |
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (Jan. 24, 2018) – The Consumer Protection Coalition (CPC)
culminated AOB Awareness Week today with a march to the Capitol and the
release of two new videos highlighting new poll results and the need for
Assignment of Benefits reform this legislative session.
Representatives of the CPC joined more than 125 members of the Florida
Association of Insurance Agents (FAIA) from across the state in marching
from downtown Tallahassee to the state Capitol to raise awareness about
AOB abuse and its negative impact on Florida consumers. Marchers carried
“STOP AOB ABUSE’’ signs and wore stickers in solidarity of reform efforts.
“FAIA’s agents are on the front lines, working with Florida’s consumers every
day to help protect families and properties, and they see first-hand how
unchecked AOB fraud and abuse is driving up costs and reducing coverage
for average, hardworking people,’’ said Edie Ousley, vice president of public
affairs for the Florida Chamber of Commerce, which is spearheading the CPC.
“This huge showing from our agent community should send a strong
message to state Senators that AOB insurance abuse is hurting Floridians,
and that they should protect consumers, like their counterparts in the state
House have already voted to do.’’
Today’s “March to the Capitol” followed the release of new polling data
commissioned by the Property Casualty Insurers Association of America (PCI)
showing that 60 percent of voters surveyed say the current system for using
AOBs in property insurance claims needs to be reformed.
“The latest poll results underscore the critical need for Florida lawmakers to
take action this session to address AOB abuse. This type of abuse is hurting
insurance policyholders by making it more expensive to own a vehicle or home,” said Logan McFaddin, PCI regional manager. “OIR has projected
homeowners’ insurance costs would increase by 10 percent a year across
Florida if no action is taken. Now is the time for the legislature to act and
The CPC urges the Senate to take up House Bill 7015 by Rep. Jay Trumbull or
Senate Bill 62 by Sen. Dorothy Hukill, both of which include commonsense
protections for consumers and modifications to one-way attorney fee rules,
which have created unfair incentives for filing lawsuits. The CPC opposes
Senate Bill 1168 by Sen. Greg Steube because it does not go far enough to
protect consumers and would not allow insurers to include litigation costs in
AOB abuse has skyrocketed as more home repairs vendors and their trial
attorneys have used AOB contracts to take control of a homeowner’s
insurance policy, jack up the cost of repairs, then sue an insurance company
that disputes the bill. More than 28,000 AOB-related lawsuits were filed in
2016, up from 405 a decade earlier. What results are higher insurance rates.
To watch videos of FAIA agents and CPC members marching to the Capitol
and CPC members talking on the negative impacts of AOB abuse, click here
Caption for attached photo: Members of the Consumer Protection Coalition
and the Florida Association of Insurance Agents march from downtown
Tallahassee to the state Capitol to raise awareness about Assignment of
Benefits abuse and its negative impact on consumers.
Photo is courtesy of the Florida Chamber of Commerce, but no credit is
The Consumer Protection Coalition is a broad-based group of business leaders, consumer advocates, real estate agents, construction contractors, insurance agents and insurance trade groups pushing for reforms to end Assignment of Benefits (AOB) abuse. Learn more about the Coalition at www.FightFraud.Today, follow the Coalition on Twitter @CPC_FL and “like” our page at FB.com/consumerprotectioncoalition.