Columbus-based Nationwide settles with some Katrina victims


Monday, Columbus-based Nationwide Insurance settled out of court with up to 227 Mississippi Gulf Coast homeowners who were victims of Hurricane Katrina. This settlement comes after other national insurance companies made similar settlements.

Nationwide agreed to an undisclosed settlement with Mississippi coastal policyholders whose homes were damaged or destroyed during Hurricane Katrina. The homeowners sued Nationwide after their claims were denied following the storm. Nationwide is not the only insurance company to agree to a settlement. State Farm Insurance recently paid about $80 million to roughly 640 policy holders. Nationwide spokesperson, Joe Case, would not say if State Farm’s settlement helped to shape Nationwide’s settlement.

“Every claim’s unique. Every company’s approach is unique. Nationwide addresses every claim on a case-by-case basis. And, you know, we look for opportunities to resolve claims wherever we can,” Case said.

Many Gulf Coast residents, whose claims were denied, sued insurance companies because the companies claimed rising water, including storm surge, was not covered in their homeowner policies. The National Hurricane Center considers Katrina the costliest hurricane in U.S. history with $81 billion in property damage. Hurricane Katrina hit the Gulf Coast in late August 2005.