Florida Senate - 2020                                     SB 914
       By Senator Brandes
       24-01110-20                                            2020914__
    1                        A bill to be entitled                      
    2         An act relating to property insurance; amending s.
    3         627.428, F.S.; providing that, for certain attorney
    4         fees awarded for claims arising under property
    5         insurance policies, the maximum fee a court may award
    6         is a lodestar fee; prohibiting the court from
    7         considering contingency risk or using a contingency
    8         risk multiplier; amending s. 627.736, F.S.; conforming
    9         a provision to changes made by the act; providing an
   10         effective date.
   12  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   14         Section 1. Subsection (4) is added to section 627.428,
   15  Florida Statutes, to read:
   16         627.428 Attorney fees.—
   17         (4) In awarding attorney fees under this section for a
   18  claim arising under a property insurance policy, the maximum fee
   19  a court may award is a lodestar fee. A court may not consider
   20  contingency risk in determining the lodestar fee or use a
   21  contingency risk multiplier to increase the lodestar fee.
   22         Section 2. Subsection (8) of section 627.736, Florida
   23  Statutes, is amended to read:
   24         627.736 Required personal injury protection benefits;
   25  exclusions; priority; claims.—
   27  With respect to any dispute under the provisions of ss. 627.730
   28  627.7405 between the insured and the insurer, or between an
   29  assignee of an insured’s rights and the insurer, the provisions
   30  of ss. 627.428 and 768.79 apply, except as provided in
   31  subsections (10) and (15), and except that any attorney fees
   32  recovered must:
   33         (a) Comply with prevailing professional standards;
   34         (b) Not overstate or inflate the number of hours reasonably
   35  necessary for a case of comparable skill or complexity; and
   36         (c) Represent legal services that are reasonable and
   37  necessary to achieve the result obtained.
   39  Upon request by either party, a judge must make written
   40  findings, substantiated by evidence presented at trial or any
   41  hearings associated therewith, that any award of attorney fees
   42  complies with this subsection. Notwithstanding s. 627.428,
   43  Attorney fees recovered under ss. 627.730-627.7405 must be
   44  calculated without regard to a contingency risk multiplier.
   45         Section 3. This act shall take effect July 1, 2020.