Florida Insurance Commissioner Issues Notice of Intent to Disapprove Proposed Rate Hike for Florida Farm Bureau Insurance
– Florida Insurance Commissioner Kevin McCarty today announced that the Office of Insurance Regulation (Office) has issued a Notice of Intent
to disapprove the June 20 rate filing submitted by Florida Farm Bureau Insurance Companies (Farm Bureau) – Farm Bureau General and Farm Bureau Casualty.
Farm Bureau was seeking a double-digit state-wide, overall average increase of 28.4 percent for its homeowners insurance product. Some Farm Bureau policyholders could have seen increases of as much as 96 percent in Dade County. On the other end, the smallest requested change was a decrease of 1.0 percent in Citrus County.
"The Notice of Intent is based on a thorough review of the information provided by Farm Bureau in its recent rate filing and the testimony it provided at the July 30 public hearing," said Deputy Commissioner Belinda Miller. "Farm Bureau failed to provide necessary support for the rate increase it requested."
Farm Bureau now has 21 days, if they choose, to petition the Office for an administrative hearing. In the meantime, the company cannot implement the proposed rate increases. The 24.9 percent rate reduction that became effective in June 2007 remains in effect.
The decision to deny the rate increase followed a public hearing in which a panel of representatives from the Office questioned various aspects of the rate filing. Video of the hearing will be available soon on the Office’s Web site.
The Commissioner has the authority to hold a public hearing to question a company about its filing pursuant to Florida law. Florida law requires the Office to hold a public hearing for property insurance rate increase filings if they exceed a statewide average of 15 percent and if they are based on a computer model.