Kevin McCarty…Right Man, Right Time!

After twelve years working for three governors, Florida’s tenth insurance commissioner has resigned his post effective May 2, 2016. Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater, Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam and Attorney General Pam Bondi will struggle mightily to fill the void. Governor Scott will offer up a name and if Atwater agrees, the entire Cabinet will vote to replace the irreplaceable Kevin McCarty. [Read more…]

The Post…at any cost!

In an understandable attempt to close a painful chapter of ethical missteps, The Palm Beach Post editorial titled “Too much hot air in inflated homeowners market assessment”, gets it wrong….again.

And…AGAIN! [Read more…]

The Palm Beach Barn Burners!

Those with barrels of ink never really get their comeuppance.

But…when a major Florida daily that fancies itself an advocate for insurance consumers is accused by a leading advocate for insurance consumers of mistreating an insurance company, well…that’s about as close as it gets. [Read more…]

Wilbur Jones & the Killer in the Keys!

This following story is timely for two reasons: one, hurricane season begins in a few weeks and; two, the National Hurricane Center just officially reclassified the Great Labor Day Hurricane of 1935 as the mightiest storm in history.  It replaces Hurricane Camille long thought worthy of such distinction.

I knew long ago the 1935 storm was the strongest ever. I knew because I interviewed one of its few survivors.  In my first book, “From Cartels to Competition”, I wrote about 24 year old Wilbur Jones.   Trapped inside an overturned rail road car,  he and others also were pinned beneath Henry Flagler’s rescue train.

I’ve just read that Jones,  formerly an insurance agent and well connected public figure, celebrated his 101st birthday. Perhaps his 1935 brush with death tells how fortunate we are today to have a Hurricane Center with advance warning systems.

Perhaps it’s a horrifying reminder of what mother nature may have in store beginning this June 1.  Enjoy! [Read more…]

1st AMENDMENT…The Freedom to be Wrong!

I was forwarded an article by Jeff Barnard of the AP opining on a recent Federal Court decision from the 9th Circuit regarding the 1st Amendment–the very first federal appellate ruling affording bloggers, such as myself,  legal protections similar to those of journalists generally.

While I’ve been threatened, to no result, multiple times, with lawsuits and other random attempts to dull my pen, this decision impacts beyond my desk to anyone giving wide circulation about an injustice, or an opinion on a “public issue.” [Read more…]

FACT & FALLACY…Such A Deal!

Going back to May of 2011, I have researched, written and posted an average of one article every week on this blog site.  If that doesn’t sound like much, remember…I’m not only retired but, postings at Johnson Strategies, LLC are not your typical blogs–merely rephrasing press releases or meeting announcements.

I opine on controversial subjects and always try to provide a new way of looking at existing, often complicated matters, simplifying them so that those who want to, including the media, can see another perspective.

I also go out on a limb occasionally and am proud to say that, in just two years, I’ve been threatened with two lawsuits.

 That’s once a year–I must be doing something right!   [Read more…]

A CLAIMS FORUM…via the ICA’s office!

Beginning Thursday, March 21st, 2013,  Florida’s Consumer Advocate, Robin Westcott and the DFS Director of Consumer Services, Tasha Carter, will conduct the first in a series of eight local forums to hear directly from consumers on how their Florida property claims are being handled. [Read more…]

A RUBIKS CUBE: Post Claims Underwriting & FS-627.409

Last Tuesday the state Insurance Consumer Advocate (ICA) dispatched a letter to Insurance Commissioner, Kevin McCarty, requesting an investigation of Universal Property & Casualty’s claim practices.     Citing  examples of claim denials due to material misrepresentations on the original application, the letter states:

In the three cases that have been handled in my office, the policyholders have had insurance coverage with Universal Property and Casualty Insurance Company (Universal) for at least 18 months and up to four years and have had their policies cancelled or rescinded as of the original policy’s effective date for misrepresentation after they filed a claim.  All cases involved previous financial issues such as bankruptcy or a lien which occurred up to four years before the consumer applied for insurance coverage with Universal. [Read more…]

KICKBACK…The Final Chapter!

Last month a federal judge dismissed the libel suit against former New York Governor, Elliot Spitzer, for an article he wrote in 2010 criticizing those charged in what has become known as the worst scandal to ever hit the insurance agency/brokerage system.

With this news I believe the ugliest of insurance stories is now over.  [Read more…]

AGENT FRAUD…Chip Merlin, again!

It feels like every time I begin looking for something to write about Chip Merlin bails me out with another blog.

In this case, after falsely accusing Citizens board of Governors of breaking the law, the head of a prominent sinkhole law firm alleged that insurance agents may be committing the crime of insurance fraud, via a blog he titled:

“Talk About Insurance Fraud, How About the Conduct of Some Insurance Agents?”  [Read more…]