Insurance companies use underwriting guidelines to determine whether or not they will issue a policy to an applicant and if so, how much it will cost. Underwriting guidelines protect consumers as well as insurance companies by making sure that everyone who applies for coverage is measured against the same standard. Normally, a car insurance policy is in effect until the term expires. But sometimes, the insurance company may cancel your policy before your policy term expires.
If your auto insurance policy was recently cancelled without explanation, you may be wondering what you can do about the situation. Florida has set rules for when and under what circumstances insurance companies can cancel policies and how much notice must be given before cutting off coverage. Some of the most common reasons for cancellation include nonpayment, fraud, misrepresentation or suspension of your license.
In Florida, an insurance company must provide at least 10 days’ notice for any cancellation due to nonpayment and 45 days’ notice for any other reason. Most people know that you cannot be denied a policy due to your gender, ethnicity or religion but in Florida, there are several more reasons that an insurer cannot use to cancel your auto insurance policy prematurely.
Specifically, Fla. Stat. § 626.9541(1)(x) states that an insurance company cannot refuse to insure or continue to insure an individual or risk solely because of the following:
- Race, color, creed, marital status, sex or national origin;
- The residence, age or lawful occupation of the individual or the location of the risk, unless there is a reasonable relationship between these;
- The insured’s or applicant’s failure to agree to place collateral business with them, unless the coverage applied for would provide excess liability coverage over that provided in policies on property or motor vehicles;
- The insured’s or applicant’s failure to purchase non-insurance services, including automobile services as defined in Section 624.124, Florida Statutes;
- The fact that the insured or applicant is a public official; or
- The fact that the insured or applicant had been previously refused insurance coverage by another insurance company.
If you receive a cancellation notice, you may have trouble finding coverage from other standard insurance carriers or will have to pay more for coverage going forward. If you think your cancellation was unfair or illegal under Florida law, call your agent or insurance company and ask for details. By statute, they must provide you with the underlying reason for their cancellation.
After any type of crash, you should consider talking to a car accident lawyer to learn what your rights and obligations are under the law. Let the personal injury attorneys at Suarez & Montero review the circumstances of your case and discuss your legal options. Our attorneys are ready to provide proven legal representation in pursuing your claim and stand ready to protect your rights.
Contact us today at 786 Lawyers for a free consultation!