(Bloomberg) — Federal disaster relief officials asked insurers to get out of the way of settlement talks over more than 1,000 outstanding disputes involving Hurricane Sandy victims' flood claims.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency said it would take charge of the discussions in an effort to speed up the resolution of claims, which have been mired in controversy including allegations engineering reports were rigged to avoid insurance payouts.

"We must move swiftly to restore confidence in the program and that action begins by expeditiously resolving the pending litigation involving thousands of disaster survivors," Brad Kieserman, a FEMA official, said Thursday in a letter to the insurers.

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