A Florida appellate court recently held that an insured may assign a post-loss property claim to a third party even when the policy contains an “anti-assignment” provision. One Call Prop. Servs. Inc. v. Security First Ins. Co., 165 So.3d 749 (Fla. 4th DCA 2015).
The insurer provided homeowners’ insurance to the insured. The insured had a water loss and called a water mitigation company to remove the water. The insured assigned his rights to any insurance proceeds for the water loss to the water mitigation company as payment for its services. The insurer refused to acknowledge the assignment and did not pay the water mitigation company for its services. The water mitigation company sued the insurer as the assignee of the insured alleging breach of contract. The insurer moved to dismiss the lawsuit with prejudice on the basis that the policy’s “anti-assignment” provision prevented the post-loss assignment. The trial court agreed and dismissed the complaint with prejudice. The water mitigation company appealed.
The appellate court reversed and remanded. The appellate court held that even when an insurance policy contains a provision barring assignment, an insured may assign a post-loss property insurance claim. Additionally, the appellate court noted that the court is not in a position to evaluate the public policy arguments regarding whether post-loss assignments of property insurance claims should be valid in Florida and called for the legislature to investigate and undertake comprehensive reform regarding this topic.