What Louisiana Policyholders Need to Know as Florida-Based Homeowners Insurer UPC Heads Into Insolvency
Published 3:18 am Saturday, February 25, 2023
Homeowners insurer United Property & Casualty Insurance Company (UPC) has declared insolvency in Florida after its estimated losses from Hurricane Ian increased to $1.5 billion, over $500 million higher than the insurer previously projected. The company had planned to non-renew the over 200,000 policies it had in force across the country, including about 30,000 in Louisiana, as part of a solvent runoff this year.
UPC policies will be canceled 30 days after the company is placed into liquidation by the Florida Office of Insurance Regulation and the Florida judicial system. While an exact timeframe will not be available until the liquidation order is in place, UPC policyholders should expect the 30-day window to begin within the next few days.
While most insurers have been reluctant to write new business in south Louisiana over the past year, the Louisiana Department of Insurance (LDI) expects several insurance companies to begin writing in the next few months following implementation of the Insure Louisiana Incentive Program.
The LDI is exploring options to help UPC policyholders avoid having to obtain a policy with Louisiana Citizens, the state’s insurer of last resort, for the short timeframe between the cancellation of their UPC policy and when the companies participating in the Incentive Program begin writing.
Providing an alternative option to UPC policyholders would allow those policyholders to avoid Citizens’ higher-than-market rates, reduce Citizens future reinsurance costs and rate increases; and make it less likely that every policyholder in the state will be assessed as a result of future Katrina or Ida-level losses at Citizens.
The LDI recommends UPC policyholders do the following:
- Contact multiple agents, including both captive and independent agents, to obtain as many quotes as possible for a new policy. Click hereto use the LDI Agent Search Tool for help finding an agent.
- Ask an agent to contact Citizens for a quote if you are unable to find a policy in the private market.
- If you do get a Citizens policy, continue shopping around for a new policy as the LDI expects more insurers to begin writing this Spring following implementation of the Insure Louisiana Incentive Program. If you cancel and rewrite your Citizens policy with a private company, Citizens will refund any unearned premium.
- If you have an open claim with UPC, that claim may or may not eventually be transferred to the Louisiana Insurance Guaranty Association (LIGA) for adjusting and payment. Continue contacting UPC about your claim unless you are notified it has been sent to LIGA.
- File a complaintwith the LDI if your claim is being mishandled by UPC.
- Monitor LDI communicationsover the coming months for updates on the status of the Insure Louisiana Incentive Program.
About the Louisiana Department of Insurance: The Louisiana Department of Insurance works to improve competition in the state’s insurance market while assisting individuals and businesses with the information and resources they need to be informed consumers of insurance. As a regulator, the LDI enforces the laws that provide a fair and stable marketplace and makes certain that insurers comply with the laws in place to protect policyholders. You can contact the LDI by calling 1-800-259-5300 or visiting www.ldi.la.gov.