INSURANCE: HOMEOWNERS INSURANCE: LATE NOTICE OF CLAIM: ASSIGNMENT; CIVIL PROCEDURE: PROPOSAL FOR SETTLEMENT FINAL SUMMARY JUDGMENT TERMINATES PENDING PROPOSAL FOR SETTLEMENT

Kroener v. Florida Insurance Guaranty Association, ___ So. 3d ___, 36 Fla. L. Weekly D1334 (Fla. 4th DCA 6/22/11)

The sellers failed to notify their homeowners’ insurance company of the hurricane damage that they sustained before selling their home. After the buyers discovered the damage, they obtained an assignment of the sellers’ entitlement to benefits from the insurance company, but FIGA (the insurance company’s successor in interest) denied coverage and obtained summary judgment in its favor. The appellate court affirmed based on late notice. The buyers presented their claim two years and two months after the loss occurred in violation of the prompt notice requirement contained in the policy. “[T]he [buyer’s] did not receive any claims through the previous owners’ assignment because there were no claims timely made by the previous owners to assign.”

FIGA filed a proposal for settlement the day before the trial court heard and granted its motion for summary judgment. Nine days after the hearing, the trial court entered final judgment. Four days after final judgment was entered, the homeowners accepted the proposal for settlement. The trial court denied the homeowners’ motion to enforce the proposal for settlement, and the appellate court affirmed, holding that final summary judgment terminated the pending proposal for settlement.