The Florida Supreme Court ruling in QBE Insurance Corp. v Chalfonte Condominium Apartment Assoc., Inc., Case No. SC09-441 (Fla. May 31, 2012) made the process of pursuing a bad faith claim against an insurance company significantly more challenging when policyholders deal with recalcitrant insurance companies.
The decision essentially eliminated the right of an insured to pursue a common law claim for good faith and fair dealing against their insurance company. This is a right held by parties in other types of contract disputes. As a result, policyholders are limited to pursuing a first-party claim for bad faith against insurers under Fla. Stat. Section 624.155. The end result is that the breach of contract and bad faith claims are bifurcated, so the bad faith claim must be pursued in a separate lawsuit after the insured prevails in the breach of contract lawsuit. Since the claims are so closely intertwined in terms of evidence and issues, this approach is wasteful and costly for policyholders.
You can reach Insurance Claims Lawyer J.P. Gonzalez-Sirgo by dialing his direct number at (786) 272-5841, calling the main office at (305) 461-1095, or Toll Free at 1 (866) 71-CLAIM or email Attorney Gonzalez-Sirgo directly at [email protected].