Engineering firm to be dismissed from Katrina insurance suits

NEW ORLEANS (AP) -- A North Carolina-based engineering firm has
reached a settlement with lawyers who have filed hundreds of
lawsuits for State Farm policyholders whose claims were denied
after Hurricane Katrina.
Under terms of the settlement, Forensic Analysis and Engineering
would be dropped from a federal lawsuit that accuses State Farm of
engaging in what's described as a pattern of racketeering after the
storm.
The company is based in Raleigh.
Forensic would be dismissed from several of those lawsuits. That
includes one filed in June that accuses State Farm of violating the
civil Racketeer Influenced Corrupt Organization Act in its handling
of claims after the August 2005 hurricane.
One of the attorneys who filed the RICO case against Forensic,
State Farm and another engineering firm says the settlement will
better enable his firm to prosecute its cases against State Farm.
Scruggs says he can't elaborate because the terms of the deal are
confidential.


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