Following the 2010 legislative session, Citizens Property Insurance customers were on their heels, with many facing the very real possibility of losing their homes. The Policyholders of Florida, launched in March 2011 and founded by former Insurance Consumer Advocate Sean Shaw, voiced immediate opposition to Senate Bill 408 – a bill that months later led to proposed 2000% sinkhole rate hikes.
Publicizing the looming rate hikes and then harnessing the outrage that followed, the Policyholders of Florida, flanked by State Senator Mike Fasano and a small minority of legislators, pushed back. Through protests, social media, and ultimately a public hearing relocated to Tampa, legislators and regulators backtracked, and rate hikes were slashed.
During the 2012 legislative session, the Policyholders of Florida legislatively took on an even more outrageous proposal - allowing surplus lines carriers to poach Citizens Property Insurance Corporation customers, without prior approval, putting Floridians at the risk of unregulated rate hikes and vulnerable to unpaid claims.
Through aggressive outreach to media, stakeholders, and consumer advocates, we were able to accurately brand the bill as a “vulture” bill and expose the true motive of surplus lines companies – ultimately defeating the bill.