Gov. Ron DeSantis on Wednesday signed a bill to allow auto insurance policy holders to fully exclude members of their household from their policy.
Currently, the Office of Insurance Regulation requires that insurers provide the minimum coverage even for drivers that are explicitly excluded from the policy. One driver can potentially drive up the rates for the entire household, pushing the household away from an insurance company they trust.
Under Clearwater Republican Sen. Ed Hooper‘s proposal (SB 420), policy holders can completely exclude a driver, such as a reckless teenager, from their policy to keep their premiums down or maintain coverage. The excluded driver will need to have their own car and own policy to keep driving.
In effect, policy holders can compartmentalize their high risk family members into coverage from “substandard” carriers.
Specifically, policy holders can exclude personal injury protection, property damage, bodily injury, uninsured motorist coverage and any coverage policy holders aren’t required to purchase.
However, the exclusion won’t be allowed if the Office of Insurance Regulation finds it unfairly discriminatory or breaks the insurer’s rules for denying insurance.
The measure received unanimous votes throughout the entire legislative process, but not without concerns from lawmakers who are members of the insurance industry. Sen. Doug Broxson, a Gulf Breeze Republican with years of experience as an insurance agent, feared that without limits, insurance companies could weaponize the option to drive out family members from a policy.
Hooper billed the measure as a way for families to carve a reckless teenage driver from their policy. That will prevent parents from having to scrap their trusted and favorite insurer because a young driver upped their rates.
“If you have a relationship with a provider and you want to continue that relationship at an affordable rate and not start over, this is one option,” Hooper said.
Longwood Republican Rep. Scott Plakon carried the companion measure in the House.
The proposal will take effect July 1.