2005 Florida Statutes
Powers and duties of the association.
631.57 Powers and duties of the association.--
(1) The association shall:
(a)1. Be obligated to the extent of the covered claims existing:
a. Prior to adjudication of insolvency and arising within 30 days after the determination of insolvency;
b. Before the policy expiration date if less than 30 days after the determination; or
c. Before the insured replaces the policy or causes its cancellation, if she or he does so within 30 days of the determination.
2. The obligation under subparagraph 1. shall include only that amount of each covered claim which is in excess of $100 and is less than $300,000, except with respect to policies covering condominium associations or homeowners' associations, which associations have a responsibility to provide insurance coverage on residential units within the association, the obligation shall include that amount of each covered property insurance claim which is less than $100,000 multiplied by the number of condominium units or other residential units; however, as to homeowners' associations, this subparagraph applies only to claims for damage or loss to residential units and structures attached to residential units.
3. In no event shall the association be obligated to a policyholder or claimant in an amount in excess of the obligation of the insolvent insurer under the policy from which the claim arises.
(b) Be deemed the insurer to the extent of its obligation on the covered claims, and, to such extent, shall have all rights, duties, defenses, and obligations of the insolvent insurer as if the insurer had not become insolvent. In no event shall the association be liable for any penalties or interest.
(2) The association may:
(a) Employ or retain such persons as are necessary to handle claims and perform other duties of the association;
(b) Borrow funds necessary to effect the purposes of this part in accord with the plan of operation;
(c) Sue or be sued, provided that service of process shall be made upon the person registered with the department as agent for the receipt of service of process; and
(d) Negotiate and become a party to such contracts as are necessary to carry out the purpose of this part.
(3)(a) To the extent necessary to secure the funds for the respective accounts for the payment of covered claims and also to pay the reasonable costs to administer the same, the office, upon certification of the board of directors, shall levy assessments in the proportion that each insurer's net direct written premiums in this state in the classes protected by the account bears to the total of said net direct written premiums received in this state by all such insurers for the preceding calendar year for the kinds of insurance included within such account. Assessments shall be remitted to and administered by the board of directors in the manner specified by the approved plan. Each insurer so assessed shall have at least 30 days' written notice as to the date the assessment is due and payable. Every assessment shall be made as a uniform percentage applicable to the net direct written premiums of each insurer in the kinds of insurance included within the account in which the assessment is made. The assessments levied against any insurer shall not exceed in any one year more than 2 percent of that insurer's net direct written premiums in this state for the kinds of insurance included within such account during the calendar year next preceding the date of such assessments.
(b) If sufficient funds from such assessments, together with funds previously raised, are not available in any one year in the respective account to make all the payments or reimbursements then owing to insurers, the funds available shall be prorated and the unpaid portion shall be paid as soon thereafter as funds become available.
(c) Assessments shall be included as an appropriate factor in the making of rates.
(d) No state funds of any kind shall be allocated or paid to said association or any of its accounts.
(4) The department may exempt any insurer from an assessment if an assessment would result in such insurer's financial statement reflecting an amount of capital or surplus less than the sum of the minimum amount required by any jurisdiction in which the insurer is authorized to transact insurance.
(5) Any necessary and proper expenses incurred by an insurer in the investigation, adjustment, compromise, settlement, denial, or handling of claims assigned to it shall, upon proper verification under the rules of the association, entitle the insurer to reimbursement. Any insurer whose employee serves on the staff of the association may set off from its assessment any necessary and proper expenses incurred by the insurer resulting from said service of its employee. An insurer which ceases to engage in the business of writing property or casualty insurance policies in this state shall have no right to a refund of any assessment previously remitted.
(6) The association may extend the time limits specified in paragraph (1)(a) by up to an additional 60 days or waive the applicability of the $100 deductible specified in paragraph (1)(a) if the board determines that either or both such actions are necessary to facilitate the bulk assumption of obligations.
History.--s. 8, ch. 70-20; s. 1, ch. 70-439; s. 3, ch. 77-227; s. 118, ch. 79-40; s. 809(1st), ch. 82-243; s. 9, ch. 85-339; s. 5, ch. 87-350; ss. 187, 188, ch. 91-108; s. 4, ch. 91-429; s. 5, ch. 92-345; s. 6, ch. 93-401; s. 411, ch. 97-102; s. 19, ch. 97-262; s. 47, ch. 99-3; s. 16, ch. 2002-25; s. 1355, ch. 2003-261; s. 128, ch. 2004-5.