Corporate misconduct and scandalous behavior at Florida’s state-run homeowners insurance company, Citizens Property Insurance Corp., emerged earlier this year when investigators from the company’s Office of Corporate Integrity issued a 73-page report with a long list of improprieties. To add fuel to the fire of public outrage, those investigators were fired last month and the Office of Corporate Integrity closed.
Now, the Tampa Bay Times has unearth details of the investigators’ report, prompting Governor Rick Scott to call for an investigation of Citizens highest levels of management. The company’s president, Barry Gilway, has stated: “Citizens is committed to ensuring the highest levels of ethic and welcomes a full investigation”. Yet some of the newly revealed details of corporate misconduct at Citizens at the very least cast a shadow of doubt over the company’s management:
- First is the fact that Susanne Murphy, a chief administration officer at Citizens was allowed to serve as a legal adviser to the company for years, despite not being a licensed attorney in Florida. When this was discovered, top officials at the company altered incriminating evidence. They then allowed Ms. Murphy to resign in August, but continued paying her a salary and giving her benefits until December.
- Then, an underwriting executive who was accused of having an affair with a subordinate was paid more than $80,000 in severance and allowed to receive unemployment benefits after he resigned from the company. The company never opened an investigation of this case.
- Subsequently, evidence of favoritism by Citizens executives was found when one employee was fired for using company resources to promote a line of sex toys and an executive was barely disciplined after she drunkenly slipped off her bra during a company retreat and promoted a side-business on company time.
- Finally, private law firms were hired to conduct several internal investigations and some of the firms cleared high-level employees of charges without considering crucial pieces of incriminating evidence.
Governor Scott Concerned
The governor wrote a letter this week to his chief inspector general asking for an investigation. In his letter, Scott said: “In light of this report, the timing of the firings raises new concerns,”. He then continued: “Given the appearance of impropriety, I request that you conduct a thorough review of the terminations to determine whether any of them were retaliatory in nature.”
In the meantime, as we reported in our post dated 11/06/2012, Citizens started moving over 150,000 Florida homeowners to private insurance companies. These homeowners will soon be receiving their new policies and this is where the lawyers of Greenberg Stone and Urbano can help.
The Lawyers of Greenberg Stone and Urbano Can Help
You should always have an attorney help you review your policy and advise you on what coverage you should have and for how much. If you are about to renew your policy (with the same insurer or a new one), we can help you review it and make sure you are adequately covered and in a position to avoid costly expenses should disaster strike.
Moreover, please note that if your home has already sustained damages, our team of loss consultants, paralegals, and attorneys will assist you in every aspect of your claim. Our loss consultant will even go to your home to evaluate the damage you sustained at no cost or obligation to you. Contact us today for a free inspection by our loss consultant.
With more than 100 years of combined experience, the Miami Dade County Homeowners Insurance Claims Law Offices of Greenberg Stone and Urbano have helped thousands of Homeowners all over Florida review their policies, present their claims and get the compensation owed them by their insurance carrier. Visit our website to learn more about our firm and contact us today for a free consultation.