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CFO Jimmy Patronis: Beware of Post-Storm Scams Following Tropical Storm Eta

11/13/2020

CFO Jimmy Patronis: Beware of Post-Storm Scams Following Tropical Storm Eta

TALLAHASSEE, Fla.— Today, Florida Chief Financial Officer (CFO) Jimmy Patronis warns Floridians to beware of storm-related fraud and scams following the impacts of Tropical Storm Eta. The CFO’s Fraud Free Florida website serves as a one-stop-shop to report fraud and learn about ways to avoid scams.

CFO Jimmy Patronis said, “Tropical Storm Eta made its second landfall in the state yesterday morning along Florida’s West Coast near Cedar Key causing dangerous storm surge and flooding in many Florida communities. Following any disaster, scam artists are working overtime to defraud individuals in their time of need. I encourage all Floridians to be on the lookout for bad actors trying to make a buck off of the damage caused by Tropical Storm Eta. Always verify the license of contractors prior to hiring them to ensure they are registered to conduct business in Florida. Be wary of offers for post-storm repairs or services that require a cash payment and always remember, if an offer sounds too good to be true, it probably is. If you or a loved one believes you have fallen victim to a post-storm scam, report it immediately at FraudFreeFlorida.com.”

Indicators of Storm-Related Fraud:

1. A contractor or restoration professional who offered to waive or discount your insurance deductible.

2. A contractor or restoration professional that has received payment and has failed to provide any repairs to your home.

3. A contractor or restoration professional who offered to provide repairs at a cash-only discounted rate and has failed to provide repairs to your home.

4. A contractor or restoration professional who pressured you to sign an AOB and has failed to provide any repairs to your home or stopped responding to your contact attempts.

To report suspected fraud, call the Department’s toll-free Fraud Tip Hotline at 1-800-378-0445 or visit MyFloridaCFO.com.    ###

About CFO Jimmy Patronis  Chief Financial Officer and State Fire Marshal Jimmy Patronis is a statewide elected official and a member of Florida’s Cabinet who oversees the Department of Financial Services. CFO Patronis works each day to fight insurance fraud, support Florida’s firefighters, and ensure the state’s finances are stable to support economic growth in the state. Follow the activities of the Department on Facebook (FLDFS) and Twitter (@FLDFS).

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