Can an insurance company at renewal change your policy limits from full replacement value to ACV if you never requested the change?
An insurer can change the terms of the renewal policy they offer when your current one ends, but only if they give you adequate notice of reductions in coverage. If you have any of the paperwork from when they sent you a renewal offer, see whether it disclosed that major reduction (RCV to ACV). Hope this helps!
Here’s the Florida law:
Per Section 627.43141, Florida Statutes, a property and casualty contract renewal may contain a change in policy terms. If a renewal contains such a change, the insurer must give the named insured written notice of the change which may be included with the notice of renewal premium required by F.S. 627.4133 and F.S. 627.728 or sent separately within the specified timeframe. Some policies that fall within this category are: personal auto, commercial and residential property, worker’s compensation, employer’s liability, inland marine, personal liability and watercraft. The insurer must also provide a sample copy of the notice to the named insured’s insurance agent before or at the same time the notice is provided to the named insured. The notice must be entitled “Notice of Change in Policy Terms.”
A renewal policy, which includes the addition of optional coverage that increases the premium to a policyholder, may not use the “Notice of Change in Policy Terms” to add the optional coverage to the policy unless the policyholder affirmatively indicates to the insurer or agent that they approve the addition of the optional coverage. Optional coverage is defined as the addition of new insurance coverage that has not previously been requested or approved by the policyholder.
Although not required, proof of mailing or registered mailing through the US Postal Service of the “Notice of Change in Policy Terms” to the named insured at the address shown in the policy is sufficient proof of notice.
Receipt of the premium payment for the renewal policy by the insurer is deemed to be acceptance of the new policy terms by the named insured.
If an insurer fails to provide the required notice, the original terms remain in effect until the next renewal and the proper notice is given, or until the effective date of replacement coverage obtained by the named insured, whichever occurs first.
Please note: “Change in Policy Terms” means the modification, addition, or deletion of any term, coverage, duty, or condition from the previous policy. The correction of typographical or scrivener’s errors or the application of mandated legislative changes is not a change in policy terms.
The intent of this law is to allow an insurer to make a change in policy terms without nonrenewing policyholders they wish to continue insuring. In addition, it alleviates concern and confusion to the policyholder caused by the required policy nonrenewal if the insurer intends to renew the insurance policy, but the new policy contains a change in policy terms and encourages policyholders to discuss their coverage with their insurance agents. https://www.myfloridacfo.com/division/consumers/understandingcoverage/homeownersinsuranceoverview.htm
In addition to the advice above, we also recommend that you talk to a trusted broker. You might also want to review the overview of Consumer Rights in Florida on our website.
In that link there is a reference to Reg. 627.7011. In subsection (a) it says an insurer has to offer a replacement cost value endorsement. Did the insurance company offer an RCV endorsement? If not, you may want to shop around for an insurer who will deal fairly with you.