Florida Officially Rejects State Farm Homeowners Insurance Hike

Florida Insurance Commissioner Kevin McCarty has affirmed the ruling of an administrative law judge and officially disapproved a State Farm Insurance homeowners rate filing that has been in dispute since last July.

McCarty was affirming an Dec. 12, 2008 order by Administrative Law Judge Daniel Manry, who ruled that State Farm Florida failed to support its request for a 47.1 percent average rate increase.

State Farm had appealed an earlier rejection of its rates by McCarty to the administrative judge.

State Farm’s rate proposal ranged from 23 percent in inland areas to 86 percent along Florida’s coasts.

The ruling is the latest in a series of rate skirmishes between the insurer and the state regulator.

In 2007, McCarty and State Farm agreed on a 9 percent rate reduction after the company obtained a 52.8 percent increase in 2006.

Last September, McCarty ordered State Farm to issue credits and refunds totaling $120 million to current and former hurricane policyholders who didn’t receive or weren’t told they could get a discount for making their homes more resistant to wind damage.

State Farm is Florida’s largest privately owned homeowner insurer.