Florida Senate - 2018                                    SB 1812
       By Senator Rader
       29-01105A-18                                          20181812__
    1                        A bill to be entitled                      
    2         An act relating to sovereign immunity; amending s.
    3         768.28, F.S.; authorizing political subdivisions to
    4         insure for certain amounts to pay certain claims or
    5         judgments; providing requirements with respect to such
    6         insurance; prohibiting payments in excess of such
    7         insurance limits from such political subdivisions;
    8         providing a remedy against insurers who act in bad
    9         faith; authorizing counties to purchase umbrella
   10         policies to insure certain municipalities; authorizing
   11         parties to pursue judgments in excess of policy limits
   12         under specified circumstances; providing for
   13         applicability; providing an effective date.
   15  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   17         Section 1. Subsection (17) of section 768.28, Florida
   18  Statutes, is amended to read:
   19         768.28 Waiver of sovereign immunity in tort actions;
   20  recovery limits; limitation on attorney fees; insurance and
   21  self-insurance limits; statute of limitations; exclusions;
   22  indemnification; risk management programs.—
   23         (17)(a)A political subdivision may purchase insurance or
   24  self-insure to cover liabilities under this section:
   25         1.In an amount equal to $5 million to pay a claim or
   26  judgment by any one person or $7.5 million to cover the total
   27  claims or judgments arising out of the same incident or
   28  occurrence.
   29         2.In an amount equal to $10 million to pay a claim or
   30  judgment by any one person or $15 million to cover the total
   31  claims or judgments arising out of the same incident or
   32  occurrence.
   33         (b)1.Insurance purchased pursuant to paragraph (a) must
   34  pay for covered liabilities up to the policy limits and not be
   35  contingent upon further act of the Legislature.
   36         2.Self-insurance maintained pursuant to paragraph (a) must
   37  require that, within 45 days after receipt of the notice of loss
   38  from the claimant, the lesser of the amount the claimant is
   39  willing to accept or the policy limits is deposited into a
   40  contingent liability account and held there pending the
   41  resolution of the related litigation.
   42         (c)Notwithstanding other provisions of this section, a
   43  political subdivision that purchases insurance or self-insures
   44  in compliance with paragraph (a) is only liable for its
   45  deductible under the policy and is not liable for any judgments
   46  in excess of the limits of such policy. A party injured by a
   47  tort covered by such a policy may not seek payment from the
   48  insured beyond the insurance coverage for such tort and any
   49  claim for relief related to such tort submitted to the
   50  Legislature in the future shall be treated by the Legislature:
   51         1.As a local claim bill, if the political subdivision was
   52  insured or self-insured in compliance with subparagraph (a)1. on
   53  the date the claim arose.
   54         2.As a claim bill against the state to be paid from state
   55  funds, if the political subdivision was insured or self-insured
   56  in compliance with subparagraph (a)2. on the date the claim
   57  arose.
   58         (d)A county may purchase an umbrella policy that, in
   59  addition to insuring the county, offers insurance to
   60  municipalities within the county; however, a municipality is not
   61  required to be insured by such umbrella policy purchased by a
   62  county. The county shall charge on a pro-rata basis the
   63  municipalities that choose to be insured by the umbrella policy.
   64         (e)Notwithstanding paragraph (c), a party injured as a
   65  result of a tort covered by this subsection may pursue a
   66  judgment in excess of the policy limits if the insurer is found
   67  to have acted in bad faith in meeting its obligations under its
   68  policy with the political subdivision. This section, as amended
   69  by chapter 81-317, Laws of Florida, shall apply only to causes
   70  of actions which accrue on or after October 1, 1981.
   71         Section 2. The amendments made by this act to s. 768.28,
   72  Florida Statutes, apply to causes of action filed on or after
   73  October 1, 2018.
   74         Section 3. This act shall take effect October 1, 2018.