Circuit Limits Damages To Hurricane Katrina Victim

     NEW ORLEANS (CN) – A woman whose house was destroyed by Hurricane Katrina is unable to recover damages from her insurance company, the 5th Circuit ruled.

     Kathleen Bilbe collected $96,400, the limit of her flood insurance policy with State Farm Fire and Casualty. However, Judge Smith upheld the district court’s finding that she was only entitled to $1,466 under her homeowner’s insurance policy.
     Bilbe’s policy with State Farm does not cover floods, including storm surges like the 13 feet of water that decimated Bilbe’s home.
     The policy did not constitute hurricane damage, because the water would have wiped out the house even if it were not driven by the winds of a hurricane.

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