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Volume 3, No. 5 - May 2014

Compliance Corner

This section has been created to assist you in keeping your insurance business in compliance. The items are intended as reminders only and are not necessarily the exact text of the Florida Statutes or Florida Administrative Code. The legal cites have been provided for your further reference.

Charging Consumers for Motor Vehicle Reports (MVRs)

An agent/agency may charge a consumer the actual cost of the MVR for each licensed driver. However, you may not include subscription or access fees associated with obtaining the MVR in the cost to the consumer.

[See subsection 627.7295(5)(b), Florida Statutes]

Assessing Credit Card Fees to Consumers

If a credit card company charges a fee for payments of policies/premiums, neither an agent nor an agency can charge the consumer that fee for reimbursement. Pursuant to Section 501.0117, F.S., a seller in a sales transaction may not impose a surcharge on the buyer for electing to use a credit card in lieu of payment by cash, check, or similar means, if the seller accepts payment by credit card.

[See section 501.0117, Florida Statutes]

Public Adjusters: Declaration of Emergency in North Florida

On April 30, 2014, Governor Rick Scott signed Executive Order 14-144, declaring a state of emergency for the following Florida counties: Escambia, Santa Rosa, Okaloosa, Walton, Holmes, Washington, Bay, Jackson, Calhoun, Gulf, Liberty, Franklin, Gadsden, Leon, Wakulla, Jefferson, Madison, Taylor, Hamilton, Suwannee, Lafayette, Dixie, Columbia, Gilchrist, Levy, and Alachua. A copy of the executive order can be found here: Executive Order 14-144 - Emergency Management-Severe Weather and Flash Flooding.

The Division of Agent and Agency Services' Bureau of Investigation reminds public adjuster licensees of the following important laws related to adjusting claims located in the counties named in the Executive Order during a state of emergency declared by the Governor:

  • Section 626.854, Florida Statutes, provides specific direction regarding fees and the insured's right of cancelation of a public adjusting contract.
    • Subsection (7) provides that during any state of emergency as declared by the Governor and for one year after the date of loss, the insured or claimant has five business days after the date on which the contract is executed to cancel a contract for public adjusting services. The five day cancellation period applies to only those contracts related to damages from this recent heavy weather event.
    • Subparagraph (11)(b)1 states that a public adjuster may not charge, agree to, or accept any compensation, payment, commission, fee, or other thing of value in excess of ten percent of the amount of insurance claim payments made by the insurer for claims based on events that are the subject of a declaration of a state of emergency by the Governor. This provision applies to claims made during the year after the declaration of emergency.
  • Section 626.8796, Florida Statutes, provides additional information regarding public adjusting contracts:
    • Subsection (2) states in part: "An unaltered copy of the executed contract must be remitted to the insurer within 30 days after execution."
      Note: The requirement to provide the insurer with an unaltered copy of the contract is also a requirement for non-emergency claims.

Please govern yourself accordingly.

You may direct any questions you have regarding this to askDFS@MyFloridaCFO.com.

[See sections 626.854 and 626.8796, Florida Statutes]

Appointments and the Easy Way to Do Them Online

Appointments must be completed online (except bail bond agents). Depending on the type of license and appointment, the steps to complete the appointment may be different. Please view the appropriate category below for instructions:

  • Customer Representative: Customer representatives (4-40) and limited customer representatives (4-42) must be appointed through the MyProfile account of the supervising general lines agent (2-20) OR the licensed/registered insurance agency where the customer representative works. To do this:
    1. Go to MyProfile and log in to the supervising general lines agent's or the agency's account.
    2. Select the "Access eAppoint" link under "Apply". If you have never used eAppoint, you must first register and will need to select "Register to become an appointing entity".
    3. Once in the eAppoint Workbench, select the required tab (New Appointment, Renew Appointment, or Terminate Appointment) and follow the instructions on the page. You will need to remit the appropriate appointment fee(s). Appointments must be renewed every 24 months during the birth month of the appointee.
  • Self-Appointing Surplus Lines Agent, Viatical Settlement Broker, Public or All-Lines Adjuster: Self-appointing surplus lines agents, viatical settlement brokers, public or all-lines adjusters must log in to their own MyProfile account and complete an appointment. To do this:
    1. Go to MyProfile and log in to your account.
    2. Select the "Access eAppoint" button under "Apply". If you have never used eAppoint, you must first register and will need to select "Register to become an appointing entity".
    3. Once in the eAppoint Workbench, select the required tab (New Appointment, Renew Appointment, or Terminate Appointment) and follow the instructions on the page. You will need to remit the appropriate appointment fee(s). Appointments must be renewed every 24 months during the birth month of the appointee.
  • Adjusting Firm Appointing a Public or All-lines Adjuster: Adjusting firms that are attempting to appoint a public or all-lines adjuster must use eAppoint by logging in with an email address and password. To do this:
    1. Go to eAppoint at https://iportal.fldfs.com/eappoint. If you are having a problem logging in, try clicking the "Retrieve lost password" link on the left side of the screen. If this does not resolve the issue, please email us at AgentLicensing@MyFloridaCFO.com.
    2. Once in the eAppoint Workbench, select the required tab (New Appointment, Renew Appointment, or Terminate Appointment) and follow the instructions on the page. You will need to remit the appropriate appointment fee(s). Appointments must be renewed every 24 months during the birth month of the appointee.
  • Insurance Companies and All Other Entities: Insurance companies and all other entities must use eAppoint and will log in using an email address and password. To do this:
    1. Go to eAppoint at https://iportal.fldfs.com/eappoint. If you are having a problem logging in, try clicking the "Retrieve lost password" link on the left side of the screen. If this does not resolve the issue, please email us at AgentLicensing@MyFloridaCFO.com.
    2. Once in the eAppoint Workbench, select the required tab (New Appointment, Renew Appointment, or Terminate Appointment) and follow the instructions on the page. You will need to remit the appropriate appointment fee(s). Appointments must be renewed every 24 months during the birth month of the appointee.

New Website with Compliance Information

We recently launched a new section on our website dedicated to compliance information. The new section also provides consumers and licensees with an overview of the investigative process and many functions performed by our Bureau of Investigation. We encourage you to visit this new section to our website and come back often as we update and add more information to it. You can visit the new compliance site at www.MyFloridaCFO.com/Division/Agents/Compliance.