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Insurers Call on Lawmakers to Pass AOB Reform

January 24th, 2018 by Jake Stofan
About 125 insurers marched on the state capitol in to spread the word about an issue they say is driving up insurance rates in the state.
When you sign a form to allow your doctor to bill your insurance company, you are doing what is called Assignment of benefits.
When it comes to home repairs, similar  agreements are often hidden in the repair contracts. Often they allow a contractor to sue a persons insurer without their consent or knowledge.
Insurers say some attorneys are abusing the system.
“In my opinion there’s huge fraud here,” said President and CEO of Citizens Property Insurance Corporation, Barry Gilway.
Lawsuits filed on behalf of homeowners have increased by 6,800 percent since 2006.
“The ultimate payer in this situation is the consumers,” said Gilway. “They will pay the price. Otherwise you wont have any insurance companies that will do business in this state.”
Florida is ranked the state with the fifth worst legal climate in the country. Insurers say Assignment of Benefits fraud is a major factor in the ranking.
The House has passed A bill that would allow people to back out of assignment benefit agreements and put restrictions on when attorneys can collect fees.
Jeff Grant owns Bone Dry Restoration and Cleaning. He says he’s low balled by almost every insurer he deals with. 
“If they can save $50 in doing the wrong thing than they’re going to try to save $50,” said Grant. “They don’t truly take the consumer in to account in any of this.”
He says Assignment of benefits helps him recover full costs, and ensures consumers repairs are up to standards.
A poll by the Florida Chamber of Commerce found 4 out of 5 Floridians don’t think contractors should be able to sue their insurers without their knowledge.

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