TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Nearly 80,000 Florida homeowners will have to find new insurance, after Southern Fidelity declared bankruptcy. The Tallahassee based company is the fourth insurer to declare insolvency since February.
Southern Fidelity’s bankruptcy filing is concerning because, according to insurance agents, a large portion of those dropped customers will likely have to reinsure their homes using Citizens Property Insurance — the state-owned property insurance company. Insurance agents say Citizens has ballooned as a private company, and just one hurricane could detrimentally affect homeowners across the state.
Southern Fidelity’s shutdown comes less than a month after state lawmakers held a special session to stabilize what’s been described as an industry in crisis. The company announced in early June, that it won’t be able to purchase reinsurance in time for the 2022 Hurricane season.
According to state insurance records: Lighthouse Property Insurance Corporation, Avatar Property and Casualty Insurance and St. Johns Insurance Company shut their doors over the past four months. Local insurance owner and agent, Sean Way, tells News4JAX, finding some of these homeowners affordable new policies can be challenging.
“Especially for those that are on fixed incomes, they have now retired,” Way said. “And they