Allen McGlynn, a member of the Florida Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors and Tallahassee Regional Board Chair, talks about Assignment of Benefits (AOB) and prejudgment interest in this installation of the Florida Chamber’s Series on Free Enterprise Podcast.
“These Assignment of Benefits forms go much further, in that they attempt to transfer legal rights to the entire claim process, including the policyholders right to attorney fees, to the vendor or contractor themselves. This essentially removes the policyholder from the claims process,” McGlynn said. “It actually acts to make the policyholder, who is the homeowner, the subordinate of that contractor. The contractor now has total control over the homeowner and their insurance claim. They control the filing of the claim, the schedule and the scope of the repair or remediation work, the price of that work and any potential litigation relating to the claim.”
The AOB lawsuit scam was almost non-existent 15 years ago, but has now spread across Florida – leaving far too many homeowners holding the bill on this ‘get rich quick’ scheme developed by trial lawyers and shady repair vendors. In 2006, there were 405 AOB lawsuits in Florida and by 2016, that number had risen to 28,200. According to the Department of Financial Services, there has been a 90,000 percent increase in AOB lawsuits in Florida since 2000.
“Some unscrupulous vendors or contractors and their attornies use these AOB forms and the rights that may come with them to protect their questionable or fraudulent business practices,” McGlynn said. “They use the threat of large attornies fees to leverage settlements on fraudulent or inflated claims, which ends up creating upward pressure on everyone’s homeowner’s insurance rates. This has become a trend of epic proportions in Florida.”
Click Below to Listen to Allen McGlynn’s Podcast
Read What The WSJ Just Wrote
For the sixth time this year, the Wall Street Journal has highlighted Florida’s stormy legal climate. Read why legal reform is important to Florida in the latest editorial. Read the full article here. Take action to stop AOB lawsuits today. Share this podcast with your employees and fellow business leaders, and ask them to sign the petition to reign in AOB lawsuits.
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