This week, Florida’s Chief Financial Officer (CFO) Jimmy Patronis turned his attention to how coronavirus is impacting the Sunshine State.
On Monday, Patronis sent a letter to travel insurance companies and agents, calling on them to make quick payments to claims resulting from travel cancellations due to coronavirus. Travel agents across the state are regulated by the Division of Agent and Agency Services which Patronis oversees.
“With the spread of COVID-19 in Florida, the United States, and the world, many Floridians travel plans have been canceled and they will be filing claims based on their travel insurance policies,” Patronis said. “I’m calling on travel insurance companies and agents to work together to pay claims promptly and remove any delays associated with the claims process. During this public health emergency, my office remains committed to ensuring Florida consumers are protected and we’re closely monitoring consumer complaints. I encourage any consumer experiencing travel insurance-related claims delays or issues to call my Insurance Consumer Helpline for assistance toll-free at 1-877-MY-FL-CFO (693-5236).”
In the meantime, on Monday, the Florida Department of Financial Services (DFS), which is also under the CFO, offered the following update on activities regarding COVID-19.
• The agency is coordinating with division leadership and the office of information technology to promote telework opportunities.
• DFS is identifying upcoming public events and gatherings that can be rescheduled or facilitated via electronic communication.
• The Department continues coordination with fire chiefs across the state to ensure information and best practices are shared as information becomes available.
• DFS has issued a travel-freeze for non-law enforcement personnel.
• DFS is working with the Division of Emergency Management (DEM) to streamline procurement processes.
• DFS is staffing various emergency support functions at DEM.
• The CFO issued a letter to encourage travel insurance companies and agents to pay travel insurance claims quickly.
• The CFO issued a directive waiving enforcement of statutory provisions for licensed insurance professionals affording them flexibility to conduct business outside of the office.
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