Florida Legislative Session Review – Part IX: Financial Services & Insurance

Insurance

HB 1381 makes changes pertaining to the regulation of insurance agencies, agents and adjusters under the authority of the Department of Financial Services. Passed 117-0 and 40-0.

HB 743 makes a number of changes to the Florida Trust Code, including limiting the power of a trustee to distribute principal in some cases and expanding the power of a bank or trust company that is acting as a trustee to invest in instruments the bank or trust company owns or controls, among other provisions. Passed 112-0 and 39-0.

SB 1748 prohibits the rejection of workers’ compensation insurance policies issued by certain self-insurance funds under certain circumstances. Passed 40-0 and 117-0.

SB 2198 allows specified insurance administrators and viatical settlement providers to file specified financial statements with the Office of Insurance Regulation on a fiscal year, rather than a calendar year, basis. Passed 33-0 and 115-0.

HB 411 changes to two limited insurance licenses issued by the Department of Financial Services (department). It changes the license for personal accident insurance to “travel insurance,” and changes the license for baggage and motor vehicle excess liability insurance to “motor vehicle rental insurance.” Passed 105-0 and 40-0.

SB 1894 provides requirements for joint underwriting plan of insurers which operates as Fla. Workers’ Compensation Joint Underwriting Association, Inc. Passed 40-0 and 117-0.

HB 1549 extends the interval at which insurers must be examined by the Office of Insurance Regulation, deletes the provisions allowing OIR to accept an audit report from a CPA in lieu of conducting its own examination and revises the guidelines for conducting such examinations. Passed 118-0 and 39-0.

Financial Services

SB 672 provides that credit balances resulting from performance of or participation in check-clearing functions are not subject to certain reporting requirements concerning unclaimed property. Passed 39-0 and 117-0.

SB 1638 prohibits gift certificates (or gift cards) sold or issued in Florida from having an expiration date, an expiration period, or any type of postsale charge or fee. Passed 33-0 and 117-0.

SB 640 removes condition for the waiver of certain certified public accountant licensure requirements. Passed 39-0 and 117-0.

SB 562 modifies the procedures for acquiring a controlling interest in a specialty insurer, domestic stock insurer or controlling company and modernizes Florida law by expanding the scope of permissible custodians to allow licensed securities brokers and dealers to also serve as custodians of securities bought and sold by domestic insurance companies. Passed 38-0 and 109-0.

HB 111 provides for a number of following changes to the title insurance law:

  • Requires nonresident title insurance agents to qualify for licensure by passing an
    examination and completing continuing education requirements in the same manner as
    Florida resident title insurance agents;
  • Allows for the rebating of an attorney’s fee charged for professional services, the title
    agent’s portion of the insurance premium, or any other agent charge or fee, to the person
    responsible for paying the premium, charge, or fee;
  • Clarifies that no portion of the attorney’s fee, the title agent’s portion of premium, any
    agent charge or fee, or any other monetary consideration or inducement, may be paid
    directly or indirectly for the referral of title insurance business;
  • Clarifies definitions within the title insurance law and provides that “primary title
    services” do not include closing services or title searches, for which a separate charge
    may be made;
  • Repeals the authority for the Financial Services Commission to establish limitations on
    related title services charges by rule; and
  • Provides that a title insurer may not issue a title policy until the insurer has made a
    determination of insurability based upon the evaluation of a reasonable title search;

Passed 109-0 and 39-0.

SB 1100 increases the annual licensing fee for security agents from $30 to $50. Passed 119-0 and 39-0.

HB 405 revises various provisions relating to vacation and timeshare plans. Passed 108-1 and 39-0.

SB 1824 provides greater consumer protections related to the mortgage loan application process and provides greater compliance and enforcement authority for the Office of Financial Regulation. Passed 38-0 and 119-0.

SB 666 bill revises the laws regulating health maintenance organizations (HMOs) which provide for the regulation of fiscal intermediary services organizations (FISOs) by the Office of Insurance Regulation. The law is designed to protect funds received from an HMO and held by these entities, which have an obligation to distribute those funds to health care providers who contract with the HMO. The definition of entities that must be registered as a FISO is changed by deleting the exemption for entities that are owned, operated, or controlled by certain licensed entities. Passed 37-0 and 113-3.


Schedule of Review Posts:

Mon May 21: Public Records/Public Meetings
Thu May 24: Education
Tue May 29: Environment, Growth Management, & Natural Resources
Mon Jun 4: Legal System & Public Safety
Mon Jun 18: Veterans/Military Affairs
Tue Jun 19: Elections
Wed Jun 20: Transportation & Economic Development
Sat Jul 7: Health Care
Mun Jul 9: Financial Services & Insurance (excluding property)
Wed Jul 11: Human & Social Services
Fri Jul 13: Gambling & General Government
Sun Jul 15: Property Insurance & Property Taxes
Tue Jul 17: Miscellaneous Bills not included in previous reviews

About Jim Johnson

Editor and publisher of The State of Sunshine.
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