FLORIDA CHIEF FINANCIAL OFFICER TOM GALLAGHER'S WEEKLY NEWSLETTER
Volume 3, Number 37, September 11, 2006
Today marks the fifth anniversary since this tragedy
unfolded, and the pain of that day’s events is still with us.
On behalf of those who lost their lives that day, we must remain
vigilant in safeguarding our country, our freedom and our democracy. And
for those who fought bravely to save lives or lost loved ones, we must
continue to fight against oppression and hatred.
To that end, we must support and pray for the men and women who are now
on the front lines working to root out the evil that targeted us merely
for being Americans.
We must remain unified in our resolve to never forget and to never let
it happen again.
-- Tom Gallagher
GALLAGHER SUSPENDS AGENT
FOR MISLEADING PARENTS TRYING TO SAVE FOR THEIR CHILDREN’S COLLEGE
Chief Financial Officer Tom Gallagher has suspended the licenses of an
agent who misrepresented insurance policies to consumers, making them think
they were saving money for their children’s college funding.
Franz Caville Wallace III, 54, of Jacksonville, agreed to a one-year
suspension and restitution to settle a 13-count administrative complaint
that found he had misled a dozen consumers into buying life insurance
policies by telling them the policy was a “savings-type account“ that could
later be used in its entirety to pay for college expenses. He failed to
disclose that the only way to access the money was through an
“These parents were looking for a way to invest in their children’s future,
and this individual sought to steal their children’s dreams,” said
Gallagher, who oversees the Department of Financial Services which conducted
the investigation that led to the charges.
Gallagher also ordered Wallace to serve a year on probation following the
one-year suspension and to pay $10,000 in restitution to the victims.
Investigators with the department’s Bureau of Investigation said Wallace
induced customers to buy a so-called “flexible life accumulator” insurance
policy, issued by the Southern Security Life Insurance Company. Wallace told
the consumers that this product constituted a college savings plan for their
children. In addition to failing to disclose that the only way to access the
money was through a loan, Wallace also failed to disclose that a portion of
their monthly premiums was being applied as premium for life insurance
policies on their children.
YOUR HOME THROUGH MY SAFE FLORIDA HOME
Interest in the My Safe Florida Home program has been tremendous! Over
42,000 completed applications have been received for free home inspections from
Floridians throughout the state who want to strengthen their homes against
the devastating effects of hurricanes. The need to create a culture of
preparedness in Florida continues, and the My Safe Florida Home program is a
significant step towards that goal.
The goal of completing 12,000 inspections within the first 12 twelve weeks
of the program is on track. The program, through its partnership with the
Federal Alliance for Safe Homes (FLASH), has held two training sessions for
inspectors who are interested in working with the program. Inspections in
the pilot project counties, which include Miami-Dade, Broward and Lee
counties, are being scheduled. As the inspector workforce grows with
qualified, drug-tested inspectors who have undergone background checks, the
My Safe Florida Home program will expand into other hurricane-vulnerable
areas throughout Florida. The program will also cap the number of
inspections that can be performed in each county based on the county’s
population, in order to prevent a handful of counties from receiving the majority
of the free home inspections.
On September 13, contractors who perform retrofit work improvements will be
able to apply to participate in the My Safe Florida Home program through
www.mysafefloridahome.com. Prior to participating, contractors must have
a valid contractor’s license and complete a four-hour course on techniques
and standards for effective wind-resistant retrofit improvements. The
Department of Financial Services has been working with FLASH to offer these
courses around the state over the next few months. The class, which is
approved by the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation
for four continuing education credits, was first conducted on August 29th in
To learn more about the My Safe Florida Home program, please visit
The website continues to be the best resource for up-to-date information
about the program, and homeowners can also learn about a wide variety of
topics including tips on hiring a contractor and ways homeowners can
strengthen their homes from the possibility of storm damage.
WANT TO SAVE MONEY ON YOUR INSURANCE
Many Floridians who live in a home built after
2002, or after 1994 in Miami-Dade or Broward
counties, do not realize that their homes may
qualify for one or more insurance discounts.
Tools and resources
are available at
www.mysafefloridahome.com to help you learn
what you can to do strengthen your home against
hurricanes and the discounts that may be
available to you when you apply
hurricane-resistant building techniques to your
Take the Florida
Wind Insurance Incentives Survey
Provided by the Florida Department of Community
This web site allows Floridians in single-family
homes or duplexes to see what insurance
discounts are available based on certain
building features that better protect the home
or duplex from hurricane damage. Some features
include improved roof shingles, hurricane clips
or straps, shutter protection for windows and
other construction techniques.
DISCLAIMER: The discounts presented at
the end of the survey are given as a percentage
of the wind portion of your total insurance
premium. The wind portion of your premium is
between 15 and 70 percent of your total premium,
depending where you live in Florida.
Sheet by Insurance Company
Provided by the Office of Insurance Regulation
Florida law requires insurance companies to
offer homeowners discounts or credits for
existing building features or home improvements
that reduce damage and loss from hurricanes.
Florida insurance companies are required to file
these discounts with the Office of Insurance
This website offers homeowners general discount
information by insurance company and explains
what range of discounts may be available.
Discount information is available for an
estimated 60 insurance companies, and updates continue to be posted.
DISCLAIMER: A new law passed during the
2006 Session requires the Office of Insurance
Regulation to evaluate all discounts filed by
insurance companies and to ensure insurance
companies are providing eligible homeowners with
applicable discounts by July 1, 2007. The
discounts presented at the end of
the survey are given as a percentage
of the wind portion of your total
insurance premium. The wind portion
of your premium is between 15 and 70
percent of your total premium,
depending where you live
APPLY FOR YOUR INSURANCE DISCOUNT
1. Contact your agent
or your company directly to find out the specific
items for which discounts are available.
2. Verify the amount of the discount for each item
as it applies to YOUR policy. Example: Hurricane
shutters will result in a 30 percent discount on the
windstorm premium. The windstorm premium, in this
example, is $300 of
the total $600 annual premium. Therefore, the
discount will equal a $90 annual savings on the
3. Request the specific criteria that is needed to
apply for and receive the discounts that are listed
for your company. Example: Does the roof need to be
inspected by a certified wind inspector? Do the
shutters need to meet a specific wind-resistance
4. Verify the documentation that needs to be
submitted in order to apply for and receive the
discounts. Example: photos of the items installed,
proof of purchase and installation.
5. Verify to whom the documentation should be
submitted. Be sure to keep copies of all
documentation, the date submitted and the mailing
6. Request confirmation of when the discount will
7. Verify if the discount will be in the form of a
premium discount, a credit to your premium balance
or a refund on premium paid.
Consumer Services HelpLine (800) 342-2762