TAMPA, Fla. — Thousands more Florida homeowners will soon be without property insurance.
Last week the Floria Office of Insurance Regulation moved forward with placing United Property & Casualty Insurance Co. into receivership. This comes after the insurer was declared insolvent following higher-than-expected losses from Hurricane Ian.
“UPC failed because of a high volume of Hurricane Ian claims combined with the fact they did not have an adequate level reinsurance coverage which insurers typically need to make sure they don’t fail after a major loss like a hurricane,” said Mark Friedlander with the Insurance Information Institute.
On Feb. 1, Tampa-based Slide Insurance Co. took over 72,000 of United’s policies, however; it is not liable for claims filed before Feb.1.
Friedlander said the Florida Insurance Guaranty Association will step in to help pay United claims. The non-profit was created to handle claims of insolvent companies and can collect surcharges on insurance premiums to cover the additional costs.
The decision to place UPC in receivership is yet another hit to Florida’s property-insurance market.
“Now with UPC, that’s 10 Florida insurance companies that have failed since the beginning of 2021,” said Friedlander.
The state-backed insurer of last resort, Citizens Property Insurance Corp., has provided policies to thousands of homeowners who lost coverage because of last year’s insolvencies.
“The best advice that we can give United policyholders right now is to contact your agent. Your agent is going to be your go-to person as you make the transition. They are the ones that are going to be best suited, best able to take care of your individual needs,” said Michael Peltier with Citizens Property Insurance Corp.