United Property & Casualty plans to withdraw its personal lines coverage in Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, and New York, according to a company news release issued on August 25, 2022.
UPC, a subsidiary of United Insurance Holdings Corp. (UIHC), is a homeowners insurer operating in the coastal states of Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, New York, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Texas. It has been covering Florida homeowners since 1999.
The move follows a downgrade in the UPC Financial Stability Rating® (FSR) issued by ratings company Demotech from “A” to “M” (Moderate) on August 1, 2022. Demotech later withdrew its FSR on UPC as of August 25, 2022.
In addition to homeowners’ multi-peril insurance, United Property & Casualty is authorized to sell the following types of direct insurance and reinsurance in Florida: earthquake, allied lines, fire, inland marine, boiler and machinery, other liability, burglary, and theft.
We wrote about homeowners’ insurance in Florida recently in an article titled, “Florida Homeowners Insurance Market in Turmoil.” The move by United Property & Casualty follows similar actions by other carriers, which are either pulling back on coverage in the Sunshine State and/or raising premiums.
Implications for UPC Panel Counsel Members and Insurance Defense Law Firms
United Property & Casualty panel counsel law firms should be scrambling about now to look for new business to replace the loss of this carrier. Many homeowners will be flee to the protection offered by Citizens Insurance, the state-sponsored insurer of last resort. CBS News reported in July, 2022, “Citizens had 937,835 policies as of Friday, up from 883,333 at the end of May. As longer-term illustrations of the growth, Citizens had 638,263 policies on June 30, 2021, and 474,630 policies on June 30, 2020, according to data on its website.”
The Citizens panel counsel program is established on multi-year cycles through a detailed application process. It is generally not possible for a law firm to be added to the Citizens panel outside of the established procedures.
For law firms looking for information on how to get on an insurance panel, it takes time and a concentrated effort to reach out to many insurance carriers.
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This article is provided for educational purposes only. It is not to be interpreted as legal advice or an opinion in regard to any topic discussed. The article should not be used as a substitute for legal advice from a licensed attorney in your state. Every situation is different and circumstances vary widely depending on the governing state law, policy provisions, and related considerations.