Florida Shop Owner Fights to ‘Save the AOB’

The Florida legislature is taking another look at assignment-of-benefit (AOB) contracts by way of House Bill 541 and Senate Bill 1002. The former would bar vehicle insurance policyholders from entering into AOB contracts with repair shops, including auto glass repair and replacement shops. Its companion legislation in the Senate goes one step further by barring such contracts for re-calibrations as well.

Daniel Seltser, president of Signature Shield in Florida, says those proposals are harmful to Floridians and is asking for the industry’s support in communicating that point to the legislature.

HB 541, introduced by Rep. Philip Griffitts and filed on January 27, would prohibit policyholders from entering into such agreements starting with issuances on or after July 1, 2023.

“Any attempt by a policy owner to enter into such assignment agreement is void and unenforceable,” the legislation reads.

The legislation pertains to “inspecting, protecting, repairing, restoring, or replacing the motor vehicle or mitigating against further damage to the motor vehicle.”

Filed on Tuesday, February 21, Senator Linda Stewart’s (D – Orlando) SB 1002 would prohibit companies from offering “items of value” to customers for making insurance claims for glass replacements and repairs. It would also prohibit consumers from entering into assignment-of-benefit contracts for re-calibrations as well as auto glass repairs and replacements. There’s also HB 837, which addresses civil remedies with respect to insurance claims.

Insurance-related windshield repairs and replacements account for most of Signature Shield’s business, which Seltser argues is the case for many auto glass shops.

The impacts on auto glass shops aren’t the only concerns addressed by Seltser in his letter, however. He says the passage of such legislation would have negative implications on consumer safety as well.

“The AOB allows Florida drivers with comprehensive insurance to schedule the prompt repair/replacement with an auto glass shop in exchange for the post-loss benefits from the insurance policy,” he writes. “Glass shops will all but cease to provide the timely repairs to keep our roads safe without the payment protections afforded by AOBs.”

Furthermore, he argues that AOBs are not the cause of the increase in auto glass litigation in Florida. Seltser says the blame falls on insurance companies and their implementation of fixed pricing.

“In sum, prohibition of auto insurance AOBs for auto glass and ADAS calibration services will create more problems than solutions. Although drafted with the best of intentions, each of these bills will cause irrevocable harm to communities across the state,” Seltser writes. “Hundreds of small businesses will close, thousands will lose their jobs, and competition will dwindle. History has revealed time and time again that less competition ultimately leads to higher prices and inferior services. For the small businesses barely eked out of the pandemic intact, passing this bill will almost certainly be the final nail-in-the-coffin for independent glass shops.”

This is the first of a two-part story. The next installment will examine alternative points of view.

This article is from glassBYTEs™, the free e-newsletter that covers the latest auto glass industry news. Click HERE to sign up—there is no charge. Interested in a deeper dive? Free subscriptions to Auto Glass Repair and Replacement (AGRR) magazine in print or digital format are available. Subscribe at no charge HERE.

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3 Responses to Florida Shop Owner Fights to ‘Save the AOB’

  1. Thank you Travis for the great article and Glassbytes for all your support!

    I sent a letter to EVERY Florida Senator and House Representative in an effort to stop big insurance from strong-arming shops into accepting -50% NAGS and/or the networks.
    Some lawmakers were receptive, others not so much.

    Click the link below to read my letter to Lawmakers. I am still actively communicating with Representative and Senators and I welcome any and all input. You can comment here or inside the Adobe link. Lets work together to save AOBs and Auto Glass in Florida.


    Dan Seltser

  2. Fawn Zion says:

    I’m an auto glass shop owner in Indiana and AOB forms are often the only way I get paid FAIR pricing. This fair pricing is not pricing that I just dreamed up in my head, this is pricing that was already agreed upon by our industry aka Nags prices. These bills have only 1 agenda in mind and that’s to harm the small independent shops as the ONLY reason we’re doing AOB Forms is because they short pay us and it gets worse every year. Cars that I would make a couple hundred profit off of a few years ago without an AOB form, now I don’t even hardly break even let alone actually make money unless the customer agrees to either the AOB or to pay up front and be reimbursed. It seems lawmakers have had their pockets lined to introduce these bills. By both the insurance companies and their pet TPA SGC aka Safelite Solutions aka Safelite Auto Glass and the new soon to be mega giant putting thousands of business owners out of work, Driven Brands.

  3. Sherry Jones says:

    Take a look in the court systems of Florida most of the cases are not reasonable pricing most are price gouging ! There is no deductibles on windshields in Florida with comprehensive insurance. Companies come to Florida just to take advantage of that. If you do use that type of glass shop which has a strong presence on the internet where you sign the AOB without knowing that you are. You never know what type of job your going to get most of them use subcontractors and bill quadruple the amount labor. Just try to call them back if you have warranty issues see if they show. Who pays for it in the end the insured because their insurance rates double and everybody’s insurance premiums increase in Florida . Put it this way there is not enough mark up on glass to be giving someone 150.00 back . The only ones getting rich are the glass shops that overcharge and the attorneys. Get rich scam.

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