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Understanding the Outcome of Gale Force Roofing and Restoration, LLC v. American Integrity Insurance Company of Florida

Submitted by Mariel Weber on 29 Feb, 2024

In a recent 2nd DCA case, Gale Force Roofing and Restoration, LLC appealed a dismissal of its complaint against American Integrity Insurance Company of Florida. (Case No. 2D22-4104). The trial court had dismissed the complaint on the grounds that Gale Force lacked standing to bring the action as an assignee of American Integrity’s insured, citing an invalid assignment of benefits (AOB) that failed to meet the requirements of section 627.7152 of the Florida Statutes. The appellate court affirmed the trial court’s decision, concluding that the AOB was indeed invalid and unenforceable under the statute.

Gale Force argued that the trial court erred in assessing the validity of the AOB by only considering the first two pages of the document attached to the complaint, contending that a review of all six pages would demonstrate compliance with statutory requirements. However, the appellate court found that even if all six pages were considered, the AOB still fell short of meeting the statutory criteria.

Section 627.7152 of the Florida Statutes, enacted in 2019, imposes mandatory requirements for AOBs, including provisions for rescission without penalty or fee and specific notice requirements. The court highlighted two key provisions relevant to the case:

  1. Recission Terms: A valid AOB must include a provision allowing the assignor to rescind the agreement without penalty or fee by submitting a written notice within specified timeframes.
  2. Notice Requirement: The AOB must contain a notice in uppercase and boldfaced type, informing the policyholder of the implications of assigning benefits to a third party.

Upon review, the court determined that the AOB attached to Gale Force’s complaint failed to meet the requirements of subsection (2)(a)2 regarding recission terms. Although the document included a notice meeting the criteria outlined in subsection (2)(a)6, it did not encompass all the necessary recission provisions as mandated by subsection (2)(a)2.

Even when considering other provisions within the document, such as the “Customer Cancellation” paragraph, the court found that it did not fully satisfy the recission terms specified in subsection (2)(a)2. The court emphasized that the statute required a singular provision encompassing all specified terms, prohibiting piecemeal compliance among multiple provisions.