Florida’s Insurance Consumer Advocate Takes Aim at Contractor Fraud

In observance of Consumer Protection Week, at the end of last week, Florida’s Insurance Consumer Advocate (ICA) Tasha Carter launched “Demolish Contractor Fraud: Steps to Avoid Falling Victim,” an online guide to address one of the biggest contributors to increased insurance rates – fraud.

Insurance fraud costs more than $40 billion annually, which increases the average family’s insurance premiums between $400 and $700 a year. Fraudulent tactics and schemes perpetrated by professionals who are utilizing harmful contracting and unlicensed adjusting practices are resulting in higher insurance premiums for all Floridians.

“Deliberate deception and intentional acts of fraud are driving up insurance rates and harming consumers. Consumers are essentially paying more for less. The availability and accessibility of adequate insurance coverage is decreasing significantly,” said Carter. “I created Demolish Contractor Fraud to educate consumers on how to spot fraud and protect themselves from falling victim.”

“The increased involvement of contractors, roofers, and water extraction companies in the insurance claims process is harming Florida’s consumers. Many of these contractors often engage in practices that inflate and exaggerate claims while also acting as unlicensed public adjusters,” said Florida Association of Insurance Agents President and CEO Kyle Ulrich. “The Florida Association of Insurance Agents applauds Florida Insurance Consumer Advocate’s efforts to fight contractor fraud that leads to higher insurance premiums for Florida’s consumers.”

The new guide outlines how contractor fraud is committed; contractor prohibitions and unlicensed adjusting, as outlined in the law; and how consumers are impacted.

Carter was appointed by CFO Jimmy Patronis as Florida’s Insurance Consumer Advocate in August 2019. The ICA serves the interests of Florida’s insurance consumers by representing the general public before the Department of Financial Services (DFS) and the Office of Insurance Regulation (OIR); examining rate and form filings submitted to OIR; recommending actions to DFS and OIR; and representing the general public on appointed boards and public forums.

 

1 COMMENT

  1. My neighbor and I were defrauded and targeted as seniors by a local man who was found out to be unlicensed contractor for many thousands of dollars. When I tried to pursue it through Senior Protection Laws and made a report, I was just swept under the carpet because the man’s FATHER has connections with local law enforcement officials and the perpetrator even stated as he threatened us, “Go ahead and try to get me, my father bails me out of everything so have at it”. This man drives with no license, has vehicles registered in his father’s name and intentionally took cash and my boat and defrauded me into putting the title in his name, although he was hired to fix it and was seen in the water using it for him and his family in photographs two days later on Facebook What can we do to get retribution and restitution. This is insane.

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