January 5, 2012
TALLAHASSEE—Florida’s Insurance Consumer Advocate Robin Westcott announced today the addition to her staff of Brian Deffenbaugh, an attorney, insurance expert and long-time legislative staffer. With nearly 20 years of experience in the Florida Legislature supervising insurance-related committees, Deffenbaugh brings legal and policy expertise on Florida’s insurance laws and marketplace to the advocate’s office. He will serve as Senior Counsel.
“Brian will be another strong voice fighting for and protecting Florida’s insurance consumers,” said ICA Robin Westcott. “With many issues facing Florida’s consumers and the insurance market, there is no better person to supplement our already strong team of advocates.”
Deffenbaugh began his career as an attorney in the Florida Senate in 1978. He served as an attorney for many committees in the House of Representatives before leaving the Legislature to join the former Department of Insurance. In 1989, he returned to the House of Representatives as the Staff Director of the Insurance Committee, leaving in 1996 to direct the Senate Banking and Insurance Committee where he served until 2008. Deffenbaugh was most recently the Director of Ethics at Citizens Property Insurance Corp.
Deffenbaugh has a bachelor’s degree in economics from Notre Dame University and a Juris Doctorate from Florida State University.
The Insurance Consumer Advocate’s Office, with Deffenbaugh’s assistance, will be focusing on the sinkhole crisis facing Florida’s property insurance market, its economic impact on Florida’s housing market, and monitoring the implementation of SB 408, passed during the 2011 Legislative Session, and the effects on Florida’s consumers.
The Insurance Consumer Advocate is appointed by Florida Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater and is committed to finding solutions to insurance issues facing Floridians, calling attention to questionable insurance practices, promoting a viable insurance market responsive to the needs of Florida’s diverse population and assuring that rates are fair and justified.