As a state with a history of severe hurricane and tropical storm damage, Florida is a location with an obvious link to weather insurance concerns. Residents can expect at least some relief soon, according to the Bradenton Herald, because the Florida Catastrophe Fund Emergency Assessment tax is dropping, leaving policyholders with less to worry about.
Although residents contribute to the fund to support hurricane-related damage concerns, the added cost has been seen by some as a burden on Floridians, especially since the state has avoided direct contact with a hurricane for about ten years. There are currently nearly $13 million in this fund, collected from tax payments during that time.
The source quotes the CEO of Florida TaxWatch, Dominic Calabro, on the benefits that will result from this change.
"Gov. Rick Scott and the State Board of Administration should be applauded for taking the right steps to help end the costly assessment a full year ahead of schedule," he said. "Eliminating this tax will allow consumers to save more of their hard-earned dollars and eliminate an impediment to Florida job growth and business development."
According to a press release from the Florida Office of Insurance Regulation, the tax officially no longer applies as of this January 1. Policies issued or renewed between this date and January 1, 2007, are still subject to the extra "assessment." The charge to premiums has been 1.3 percent since 2011, and was just 1 percent for four years before that.
Even as the status of disaster funding within a certain state changes and reflects growth, providers need to treat all claims with seriousness and work fast to satisfy policyholders. By outsourcing claims processing, they can help the victims of storm damage feel safer and more prepared.