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Universal P & C Insurance Agreed Florida owners to raise rates to 14.6%

 

Thursday, Oct 22,2009, 9:21:22 AM   Click:

Florida owners to raise rates to 14.6%
Universal Insurance Holdings Inc. said its subsidiary, Universal Property and Casualty Insurance Co., received state regulatory approval for an average homeowners premium rate increase of about 14.6% statewide.

The rates will go into effect Oct. 22 for new business and Dec. 11 for renewals, said a statement from the company. Universal Property is one of the top writers of homeowners multiperil in Florida, according to BestLink.

Universal Property is fully licensed and is in operation in Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Hawaii. The insurer said it has also filed in Texas to start a separate homeowners insurer there (BestWire, June 4, 2009).

Universal Insurance Holdings announced late last year that it was forming a second subsidiary in Florida, American Platinum Property and Casualty Insurance Co. It will write homeowners insurance and inland marine on homes valued in excess of $1 million. The coverage is not currently offered by Universal Property (BestWire, Dec. 19, 2008).

According to the Florida Office of Insurance Regulation, Castle Key Insurance Co. and Castle Key Indemnity Co. (formerly Allstate Floridian) and Universal Insurance Co. of North America have had rate requests approved under a new law that allows insurers to recoup some reinsurance expenditures.

As of Oct. 5, the OIR said pending rate increase filings remain for Hillcrest Insurance Co., Gulfstream Property and Casualty Insurance Co., Cincinnati Insurance Cos., American Traditions Insurance Co., Modern USA Insurance Co., Ark Royal Insurance Co., and American Strategic Insurance Group.

Federated National Insurance Co. was recently approved to increase rates an average of 19% for homeowners customers across the state. The wholly owned subsidiary of 21st Century Holding Co. will boost the rates on policies starting or being renewed effective Nov. 1 or Dec. 1 (BestWire, Oct. 1, 2009).

In afternoon trading on Oct. 21, shares of Universal Insurance Holdings Inc. (AMEX: UVE) stock were selling at $5.11, up about 3.02% from the previous close.

The top five writers of homeowners multiperil in Florida, according to BestLink, were: State Farm Group, with a 17.7% market share; Citizens Property Insurance Corp., with 16.2%; Universal P&C Insurance Co., with 7.2%; USAA Group, with 5.1%; and Tower Hill Group, with 4.5%.

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