Protestors Rally Against Proposed Insurance Hikes

MIAMI – (CBS4) – Homeowners frustrated by the increasing insurance costs gathered Saturday afternoon to protest future rate hikes being proposed in the state legislature.

Floridians In Action, the group protesting the hikes, said the bills being introduced in the state House and Senate will further depress cash-strapped homeowners and increase unemployment.

They expressed their discontent by gathering at Tropical Park from noon to 3 p.m.

Emiliano Antunez was among those who protested Saturday.

“Well, they’re proposing to go up almost 200 percent then on top of that Citizens Insurance would have to charge an additional 25 percent over whatever any private insurance company charges,” Antunez said. “We’re trying to bring awareness to the people. What’s going on in Tallahassee? It’s not in their best interest at this moment that they should get behind groups like these and contact their legislators and let ‘em know that we just can’t take it anymore.”

Luis Meurice said he’s fed up.

“It’s just a habitual problem with [insurance companies] just sticking their hands in our pockets and we are fed up with it,” said Luis Meurice, a protestor.

State legislators backing a variety of bills addressing homeowners’ insurance say the bills will bring insurance companies back to the state and boost the state’s property insurance market.

Floridians In Action disagrees and issued the following statement about insurance companies.

“They have emptied your pockets through higher insurance rates, which have affected employment, (depleted spending capital to purchase goods, services or construction.This translates into higher unemployment numbers); cost of living swells by additional premium hikes that affect every single business and Floridian,” the group said in a statement.

The group is protesting the following bills:

If passed, SB 1714 and HB 1243 would give Citizens Property Insurance Corporation the right to raise premiums by as much as 25 percent – a 10 percent increase over what state law currently allows.

SB 1462 and HB 4115 would do away with a state law that requires a consumer advocate group to score insurance companies based on claims handling.

SB 1330 and HB 885 would allow insurers to hike premiums by as much as 30 percent  a year without approval from regulators.

SB 408 and HB 803 proposes shortening the time homeowners have to file hurricane and sinkhole claims. Insurance companies could be allowed to drop sinkhole coverage all together.

To send a letter to your state representative, click here.

(©2011 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The South Florida Sun-Sentinel contributed to this report.)

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Comments

One Comment

  1. bobbyb says:

    sounds like someones getting a kickback here!

    1. Leslie says:

      Ask Rick Scott!!! De Regulate? Are they Serious??? Does he not remember the BANKS being DEREGULATED!!! ???
      No Major Storm in 5 Years!!! My insurer Allstate showed over a BILLION in PROFITS!!!
      I paid them a fair price…based on my homes history… If they can show a profit and still charge a fair price …. what is the problem?

  2. Agustin Bel says:

    Your Republican House at work. Do not complain, you voted for it!

    1. Philip Scharfy says:

      Another socialist kool-aide sipper…ho-hum

      1. Atheist says:

        Stop watching fox news bro you’ve been lied too! Can you please explain why republicans continue to give more breaks and tax holidays to the rich while we are losing the middle class. It’s coming to the point where 2 % will be filthy rich and 98% will be on the brink of poverty.

        Please do someresearch before you preach what you heard on tv from a bible thumper,

    2. democrat says:

      agreed, friggin republicans!

  3. MARVIN PURSER says:

    ANYONE WHO VOTES IN THE STATE OR FEDERAL CONGRESS TO RAISE INSURANCE RATES FOR HOMEOWNERS POLICIES WILL NOT GET MY VOTE FOREVER. and, SINCE I HAVE NO MORTGAGE, I WILL NOT CARRY ANY INSURANCE WHATSOEVER. THAT MEANS I WILL DROP WHAT I HAVE AND WHEN A HURRICANE DEVASTATES MY HOME, THE STATE OF FLORIDA CAN COME TO MY RESCUE AND PROVIDE ME A HOME JUST LIKE THEY DO IMMIGRANTS AND OTHER LOW-INCOME FAMILIES. THE PITY PARTY IS OVER!

  4. Harriett says:

    The rape of Florida by the republicans continues.

  5. Ana says:

    Teachers first and now homeowners. Who did Florida really vote for and how did they look at these candidates who are sinking us as a state? This is unbelievable!!! By the end of the four years our governor will turn our state into chaos!!!

  6. bobbyb says:

    perhaps Norman Brahman will expand his horizons!

  7. Waldo Faura says:

    If you want complete information on these bills please visit floridiansinaction.com
    The additional information on these bills is scary and you need to contact your legislators.

  8. Cristexposer says:

    You don’t want home insurance don’t buy it. I believe in free enterprise, it’s American. Atheist doesn’t believe in anything, most believe only lies.

    You don’t like insurance don’t buy it. You have to have it, shop it. Just quit complaining about business unless you got the money to insure yourself. Insurance is a two way street. It’s time for American to get off the government tit.

  9. bobbyb says:

    There is only one problem with your thinking here. Anyone with a mortgage doesn’t have a choice about buying or not buying homeowners insurance.. How about all the people that bought rental houses as their investments. Now they will have a 68% increase on their already unaffordable insurance premiums — don’t forget that many of them are upside down in their properties.

  10. bobbyb says:

    Oh- just realized that you are an insurance agent and have the nerve to advertise your company on your comment.

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