The National Association of Mutual Insurance Companies commends Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, Speaker Paul Renner, President Kathleen Passidomo, and leaders in the Legislature for successfully passing a comprehensive tort reform package that will create a fairer litigation environment in the Sunshine State. Today’s passage supplements the positive actions also taken during the December 2022 special session to improve the civil justice environment.
“For years, Florida’s legal environment has encouraged opportunists to take advantage of residents and small businesses at the expense of the state’s economy,” said Neil Alldredge, president and CEO of NAMIC. “This abuse has added to the challenges of providing insurance coverage in the state. Those who have been victimized by the proliferation of costly, abusive lawsuits can now breathe a sigh of relief knowing that greater fairness and balance will be good for Florida, bringing much-needed stability, so important to the long-term goal of achieving a healthy and competitive insurance marketplace.”
Specifically, the Florida tort reform package contains the most significant set of positive reforms in the state in decades, if not ever. Provisions cover seven major areas of tort reform: third-party bad faith, comparative negligence, fee multipliers, one-way attorneys' fees, statute of limitations, transparency in damages, and premises liability.
Currently about 9 percent of homeowner property claims nationwide are filed in Florida, yet the state accounts for 79 percent of insurance-related lawsuits, illustrating how out of hand the legal system abuse has become in recent years. Lawsuit abuse is not limited to property and negligence claims. There are tens of thousands of personal injury protection and auto glass insurance lawsuits filed each year, using the same litigation-for-profit model that HB 837 seeks to reduce. Litigation abuse has added exponentially to the challenges of providing insurance coverage in Florida, and addressing the litigation environment is imperative to restoring a functioning and competitive insurance market.
Article Posted: 03.24.23
Last Updated: 03.24.23