Originally published by Bay News 9 |
By In Focus Staff, Orlando
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An AOB is an agreement that, once signed, transfers the insurance claims rights or benefits of the policy to a third party. An AOB gives the third party authority to file a claim, make repair decisions and collect insurance payments without the involvement of the homeowner. AOBs have been used with life and health insurance policies for many years. However, it is now also being commonly used in homeowners insurance claims by restoration companies and contractors. Signing an AOB can be helpful with navigating the claims process, but if misused, it can lead to harmful consequences for the homeowner. It is also the main reason Citizens just filed an 8% increase in property insurance rates, along with other insurers raising rates throughout Florida, not just along the coastline. It has also led at least one insurance company to become insolvent in the past year. Hurricanes and windstorm events remain a driver for increasing insurance rates for the past 15 years, but in recent years AOB has been the primary cause.
David Altmaier, Florida Insurance Commissioner
Barry Gilway, CEO, Citizens Property Insurance Corp.
State Rep. David Santiago [R], District 27, Deltona
State Rep. Ben Diamond [D], District 68, St.Petersburg