Windhaven Insurance Company was ordered into receivership for purposes of rehabilitation by the Second Judicial Circuit Court in Leon County, Florida on December 12, 2019. The Florida Department of Financial Services is the court appointed Receiver for Windhaven.
Windhaven Insurance Company was later ordered into liquidation, effective on January 6, 2020. The policy cancellation date is February 5, 2020. The claims filing date was January 6, 2020.
The now insolvent Miami-based insurance company had approximately 73,000 active polices as of November 30, 2019. Windhaven was licensed in Florida in 2005 as a domestic property and casualty insurer to write private passenger auto liability and private passenger auto physical damage lines of business. It commenced business in 2006. The company wrote non-standard private passenger insurance coverage. Jimmy E. Whited served as Windhaven Chief Executive Officer.
Windhaven underwrote coverage through State National Company, Inc., an A.M. Best “A”-rated admitted insurance carrier.
As recently as July, 2019, the company announced the appointment of a Windhaven board member as the new Chief Financial Officer for Windhaven® Insurance and The Hearth Insurance Group™. The previous CFO was appointed in November 2018 and apparently only lasted for a few months.
The Hearth Insurance company is a Windhaven affiliate, focused on homeowner policies in Florida and Texas. Together they have written close to $2 billion in home and auto insurance premiums from offices in Tampa and Dallas since the company was founded. The company also owned ClutchAnalytics®, an insurtech software technology company.
According to its website, The Hearth is a company known for pairing cutting-edge technology with old school values. Founded by a group of people who wanted to shake up the homeowners’ insurance market for the better, it’s been part of the Florida market since 1990, and the Texas market for a number of years. This group, via their commitment to independent agents and entrepreneurship, quickly grew from a condo in Miami to over $500M in premium and recently ranked #11 in direct written premium in the state of Florida with over 700 employees.
Litigation and Panel Counsel Considerations
The Florida Insurance Guaranty Association (FIGA) has been activated to help pay covered outstanding claims for Windhaven policies.
The Department of Insurance, Division of Rehabilitation and Liquidation, is currently working to transition claim files and claim data to FIGA to continue the processing of claims. There may be a slight delay in claim processing during this transitional period. Once the transition is completed, updated contact information will be posted to the website to assist policyholders.
The processing and payment of covered claims will be made by FIGA (subject to the lesser of policy limits or FIGA’s maximum cap). The maximum amount FIGA will cover is the existing policy limit or $300,000. No claim will be paid in excess of this cap.
There is an automatic stay in place prohibiting judicial and administrative proceedings against the company in the event of existing lawsuits, pursuant to the Receivership Order and to Section 631.041(1), Florida Statutes.
Law firms that served as panel counsel members to Windhaven Insurance will want to be looking for replacement work quickly.
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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.