Insurance customers could get additional protections

Author: The Associated Press

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) – Florida legislators may try once again to give additional protections to customers of Citizens Property Insurance.

A Senate panel on Thursday approved a bill that would put a limit on how many times a year a homeowner could be asked to leave the state-created insurance carrier. The bill sponsored by Sen. Anitere Flores would also make it easier for a homeowner to switch their insurance coverage back to Citizens in case their rates spike upward.

The legislation (SB 1630) is heading to the full Senate, and a companion bill is moving in the Florida House.

Citizens has nearly 500,000 policyholders. In recent years, legislators have pushed to shrink the size of Citizens by trying to encourage homeowners to switch to privately run insurance companies.

Gov. Rick Scott last year vetoed a similar bill to the one that Flores is sponsoring this year.

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