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Costly insurance mistake left Tampa homeowners uninsured and out $6,000+

Family says they were sold policy that insured wrong house
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Posted at 6:00 PM, Feb 09, 2021
and last updated 2021-02-09 18:00:38-05

TAMPA, Fla. — The Kent family didn’t realize until after they bought a homeowner’s policy for their Tampa house that the insurance company made a mistake on their paperwork.

“They insured the wrong home,” J Kent said. “They insured our neighbors.”

He showed ABC Action News the policy that lists the wrong address as the insured property. The policy cost over $8,000 a year, but J Kent said he could not get anyone at GeoVera Specialty Insurance Company to fix the typo.

The street address was off by just one digit. But the error left Kent and his parents wondering if their home was even insured by the million dollars in coverage they paid for.

“I have called for literally hours a day for weeks on end trying to get this resolved,” Kent said.

After calling for months, Kent said last summer the company offered to refund the premiums and cancel the policy, but they never did.

In Florida, there's help for policyholders who run into trouble with their insurer. Florida’s Division of Consumer Services mediates consumer complaints aimed at insurance companies.

Former Deputy Insurance Commissioner Lisa Miller says the agency’s success rate for mediation hovers at over 80 percent.

“There's nothing like having someone that is an advocate for you and in a lot of ways it is just a way to open the conversation between the company and you,” she said.

In the Kents’ case, it was ABC Action News Investigator Jackie Callaway who opened the conversation, reaching out to AAA which represents Geo Vera, the company that sold the policy.

AAA responded with the following statement:

“Our team followed up with both Mr. Kent and his parents to resolve this matter and are working with Geo Vera to refund their money.”

“I contacted you and within 3 hours," the vice president of AAA said. "I am so sorry we are going to resolve this.’”

Geo Vera Specialty Insurance Company has not yet responded to our requests for comment.