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"Judge Rules for Insurers in Katrina"



Maybe Dickie Scruggs isn't going to be allowed to destroy the U.S. property and casualty insurance industry after all. U.S. District Judge L.T. Senter yesterday dealt a substantial defeat to Scruggs' pilot case seeking to force insurers to cover Katrina storm surge damage, ruling that the flood exclusion in a Pascagoula couple's Nationwide policy is valid and enforceable, notwithstanding a recalled conversation in which the couple's agent allegedly advised them not to buy separate flood insurance. Scruggs claimed partial victory because Judge Senter ruled ambiguous (and thus to be construed against the insurer) a clause excluding coverage of wind damage if a property subsequently floods. (Laura Hipp and Lora Hines, "Storm surge not covered", Jackson Clarion Ledger, Aug. 16; Joseph B. Treaster, "Judge Rules for Insurers in Katrina", New York Times, Aug. 16; Lattman, Aug. 15).

P.S. Much more at Insurance Coverage Blog here, here and here.

 

 


Rafael Mangual
Project Manager,
Legal Policy
rmangual@manhattan-institute.org

Katherine Lazarski
Manhattan Institute
klazarski@manhattan-institute.org

 

Published by the Manhattan Institute

The Manhattan Insitute's Center for Legal Policy.