Understanding Homeowners Insurance in Florida

closeup of a person typing on a calculator; a tiny model of a house sits on the desk nearby

Homeowners in Florida need to know where they stand under the state’s insurance law. It is important for them to understand their rights and responsibilities in the event that they must file a claim. These are some of the more important issues regarding homeowners insurance in Florida:

Seeking Reimbursement for Property Damage
The reimbursement is based on the actual value of the property and will cover the cost of repairs at the time the damage was suffered. An insurance provider must in fact offer either a policy or a promise to cover property based on the adjusted cost of repairing or replacing what was damaged. Coverage will also be based on the limits of the policy.

Replacing Property That Has Been Destroyed
In the event of a total loss, the owner of the house, building or mobile home will reimbursed for the amount stipulated in the insurance policy and based on the cost of the premium and the amount paid. A homeowner who was insured for $100,000 can expect to receive that amount. However, the policy will only provide coverage for the event directly responsible for the destruction of the property. The insurance provider will not be liable for destruction caused by some other factor, such as flooding.

Understanding the Reimbursement Process
An insurance provider is legally required to respond to a claim within 14 days of its receipt of the request. It then has up to 90 days to either make the payment or deny the claim. Once the claim has been settled in writing, the provider has 20 days to make the required payment. An insurer that denies reimbursement must explain in writing the reason for its refusal to make the payment. A homeowner who is denied payment will have the opportunity to appeal the decision.

When to Take Legal Action
In the event that an insurance provider fails to fulfill its obligations, a homeowner may consider initiating a lawsuit. One reason for such action would be the failure of a provider to act in a “fair and honest” manner. Action could also be taken if the insurer fails to explain the coverage it provided or when it does not settle a claim when its responsibility to do so becomes reasonably clear. Homeowners who run into difficulty with insurance companies should seek assistance from an attorney who has experience in such cases and can help guide them through the complex process of securing a claim.

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