Insurers say no-fault repeal would be costly to Florida drivers
Stock image via Adobe.

Insurance policy contract concept with toy model cars having a crash. Auto insurance, car insurance, PIP, no-fault.
Drivers who purchase minimum coverage could pay up to $165 to $876 more a year.

The American Property Casualty Insurance Association says repealing the no-fault auto insurance system could jack up insurance rates for Florida’s low-income drivers.

Bills moving in both chambers (HB 719/SB 54) would replace the currently required $10,000 personal injury protection (PIP) coverage in favor of mandatory bodily injury (MBI) coverage that pays out up to $25,000 for a crash-related injury or death or up to $50,000 for injury or death in a crash involving two or more people.

The higher coverage will translate to higher rates, APCIA says. Especially for the 40% of Florida drivers who carry minimum limits below what is described in the PIP repeal bills.

If the current proposals are passed as-is, those drivers could see their auto insurance costs rise by $165 to $876 a year, according to data assembled by APCIA, a trade group representing auto, home and business insurers.

APCIA warned that the House proposal would raise rates for all drivers — even those whose coverage far exceeds the proposed minimums — by an average of 5%. The figure comes from a preliminary analysis produced by Milliman and stems from the House bill’s failure to address Florida’s bad faith laws, APCIA said.

“Low-income drivers who purchase minimum limits in Florida are likely to be hit the hardest financially if Florida’s no-fault auto insurance system is eliminated and replaced with a mandatory bodily injury coverage system,” said Logan McFaddin, Assistant Vice President of state government relations for the APCIA. “This could result in even more uninsured motorists on Florida’s roads, which is a serious concern as Florida has one of the highest rates of uninsured motorists in the nation at approximately 20%.”

“Florida drivers already pay the highest premiums in the country for full auto insurance coverage. With the pandemic putting financial strains on consumers and businesses, now is not the time for lawmakers to implement major policy changes that will likely increase costs drastically for those who can least afford it.”

McFaddin said the state’s legal system is “rife with rampant lawsuit abuse” and repealing no-fault without addressing bad faith laws would only make it worse.

“Our state’s court system is experiencing a backlog of more than one million cases due to the pandemic. This is not the time to send more auto insurance claims to court by repealing the no-fault auto insurance system,” added McFaddin.

Drew Wilson

Drew Wilson covers legislative campaigns and fundraising for Florida Politics. He is a former editor at The Independent Florida Alligator and business correspondent at The Hollywood Reporter. Wilson, a University of Florida alumnus, covered the state economy and Legislature for LobbyTools and The Florida Current prior to joining Florida Politics.


6 comments

  • martin

    March 31, 2021 at 3:41 pm

    This bill is being pushed by the greedy trial lawyers, or ambulance chasers. The driving public will be harmed, but the lawyers will pocket an estimated 3-5k or more per case they represent.

    Does anyone see the conflict of interest here?

    Reply

  • Vince

    April 1, 2021 at 9:09 am

    Car accidents are the leading cause of non natural deaths in the U.S. but Florida currently allows people to operate 2,000 pound pieces of machinery at speeds up to 70 Miles Per Hour on public roads with no requirement that if you cause an accident and hurt someone else you are capable of paying for their medical bills or pain. Does that sound right?

    Nearly every other state has a requirement that if you hurt someone your insurance company pays, but the insurance lobby spouts numbers like this to prop up legislation propped up by Pro Big Business politicians who are bought and paid for by the insurance lobby. Does anyone see a conflict of interest here?

    It’s all just numbers and hyperbole until you are hurt by someone driving with insurance that doesn’t do anything for you.

    Reply

  • Stan Parsons

    April 1, 2021 at 2:59 pm

    I worked for Insurance Commissioner Bill Gunter when he overcame the objections of the “Florida Academy of Trial Lawyers” to implement PIP in the late 70’s.
    Two groups that are not involved in the current legislative fray today that had a lot to say were County Governments who were paying astronomical unreimbursed hospital bills and the court system. the trial dockets in Dade County were out 3 years worth of BI cases.
    I remember stories, that Family Practice firms were chartering busses to Naples for undisputed dissolutions’ of marriage.
    Increased healthcare costs 1971(pre MRI) to 2021 aprox.549.4%.
    Building on the Covid backlog the courts should gridlock pretty quick.

    Reply

    • Michael Niemond

      April 1, 2021 at 7:50 pm

      Trial dockets are already backed up 6 years with PIP cases. Good point on county costs though.

      Reply

  • Vivian

    April 1, 2021 at 4:03 pm

    I remember Bill Gunther.
    Thank you for sharing all these truths!!

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


#FlaPol

Florida Politics is a statewide, new media platform covering campaigns, elections, government, policy, and lobbying in Florida. This platform and all of its content are owned by Extensive Enterprises Media.

Publisher: Peter Schorsch

Contributors & reporters: Phil Ammann, Jason Delgado, Drew Dixon, Renzo Downey, Rick Flagg, A.G. Gancarski, Joe Henderson, Janelle Irwin, Ryan Nicol, Jacob Ogles, Scott Powers, Andrew Wilson, and Kelly Hayes.

Email: [email protected]
Phone: (727) 642-3162
Address: 204 37th Avenue North #182
St. Petersburg, Florida 33704