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ST. PETE BEACH, Fla. — Home is supposed to be where the heart is, but lately, Vincent Tormenia says Citizen’s Property Insurance has turned his place of comfort into a place of confusion.
“It’s been a hassle,” Tormenia explains. “I’m getting to the point where…you can’t trust Citizens Insurance Company.”
In a special session last year, lawmakers voted to require customers of the state-regulated Citizens Property Insurance Company to have flood insurance along with their policies.
Tormenia keeps meticulous records, but now amongst his files, is a letter dated April 1 from Citizens saying he needs to get proper flood insurance to keep his home insurance policy.
By April 12, Tormenia says his broker sent over his active flood policy through the National Flood Insurance Program to Citizens. But he says, even though he had proof of the required coverage, he still got a letter in the mail later this month saying that he was being dropped from his homeowner’s coverage come August.
“I’m gonna be in limbo in the middle of hurricane season,” he said.
After days of back-and-forth with Citizens, calls to city and state officials, and a call to 10 Tampa Bay. On Thursday, Tormenia says a Citizens representative told him his coverage actually wasn’t being dropped.
“That they were rescinding the non-renewal notice,” he said. “All of a sudden.”
But, Tormenia explains he still hasn’t gotten any documentation via email or snail mail saying that Citizens has acknowledged and accepted his proof of flood insurance.
“This is absurd what’s going on,” he said. “They’re just throwing these things at you.”
As Tormenia waits to find out if he actually still has coverage on the home he’s lived in since 1990, he says the company needs to figure out a better way to enforce the new mandate in a way that doesn’t put homeowners who’ve met the proper requirements at risk of losing it all.
“It’s gonna be a mess. It’s already a mess, but it’s gonna be a bigger mess,” he explains.
We have reached out to Citizens regarding the rollout of the mandate and are waiting to hear back.
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