McIntosh v. State Farm
In the matter of Thomas and Pamela McIntosh v. State Farm Fire and Casualty Insurance Co., et al., DisputeSoft Managing Partner and computer forensics expert Jeff Parmet was selected to serve as a neutral expert to the Special Master appointed to oversee the case by the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Mississippi. The case centered on allegations of insurance fraud by two “whistleblower” sisters, Kerri and Cori Rigsby.
In the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, hundreds of homeowners along Mississippi’s Gulf Coast filed catastrophe claims for flood damages to their homes and property under policies issued by State Farm. The Rigsby sisters, both claims adjusters formerly employed by an insurer contracting with State Farm, alleged that State Farm had a practice of searching for damage appraisers who would certify that damage from the hurricane resulted not from flood damage but from wind damage, which was not covered under State Farm’s flood insurance policies. In its defense, State Farm alleged that the Rigsby sisters stole thousands of pages of State Farm internal claims records, reports, memos, and emails prior to their resignations and turned them over to a litigation team headed by Richard “Dickie” Scruggs, who rose to prominence bringing class-action suits against tobacco manufacturers.
The Special Master charged DisputeSoft’s Jeff Parmet with examining the damaged hard drive of the Rigsbys’ computer and retrieving electronically stored information that might be relevant to the case. Mr. Parmet successfully recovered data from the Rigsbys’ system, including partial file segments from the damaged portions of the hard disk, and delivered his findings to the Special Master who made the results available to both parties in the case.
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