A federal magistrate judge in Washington ruled Thursday that State Farm is not entitled to records about the former Scruggs Katrina Group. The insurance company had subpoenaed the records in a whistle-blower lawsuit filed over the company’s Hurricane Katrina claims-handling practices.
State Farm sought an array of documents about SKG, headed by then-attorney Dickie Scruggs. SKG represented hundreds of policyholders in Katrina cases. Before all the cases were resolved, SKG disbanded because Scruggs had been caught trying to bribe a North Mississippi judge in a dispute with a Jackson law firm over division of legal fees SKG earned through settlement of State Farm policyholder cases.
Scruggs has since been disbarred and sent to federal prison. Magistrate Judge John M. Facciola ruled the insurance company can have only documents related to Cori and Kerri Rigsby, Ocean Springs sisters who adjusted State Farm claims before turning to Dickie Scruggs with allegations the company was defrauding policyholders. State Farm has denied any wrongdoing.
Read more at The Sun Herald