After Sandy, Technicality Forces Homeowners To Fight To Win Claims

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(Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

(Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

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NEW JERSEY (CBSMiami) – As if Hurricane Sandy didn’t put homeowners through enough stress and loss, now they must fight another battle: convincing home insurers to cover the damage.

NJ.com reports New Jersey’s Department of Banking and Insurance ruled Tuesday night that insurers would not be able to charge a “hurricane deductible” on damage claims arising from Sandy.

According to CBS4’s Al Sunshine, residents do have hope: banks require flood insurance for properties along the immediate coast, and much of the damage there was from storm surge flooding. Of course, that doesn’t help inland residents.

The nature of Sandy begs the question: if it looks like a duck and quacks like a duck…is it a duck?

For more coverage of Superstorm Sandy:

Sandy made landfall with the strength of a hurricane. At 5 p.m. Monday, Post-Tropical Cyclone Sandy was 40 miles off the coast of Atlantic City, where winds had already gusted to 77 mph. No hurricane warnings were issued for the Northeast U.S. coast, though the NHC continued issuing new advisories and tracking maps every three hours – just as it would during a hurricane – before local National Weather Service offices took over.

Private meteorologists have criticized the National Hurricane Center for the decision. “We don’t see any justification (for the lack of a warning),” Barry Lee Myers, chief executive of Accuweather, told NJ.com Thursday morning.

In a statement, the NHC said it reclassified Sandy as a post-tropical cyclone because it was forecast to – and did – lose its tropical characteristics prior to making landfall in southern New Jersey.

The statement will do little to dry up the tears of homeowners stuck with building their homes from scratch due to a technicality.

NJ.com contributed material for this report.

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