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Andrew Zelak cleans the snow from his roof on Irving Place in Alden, N.Y., Nov. 20, 2014. The weight of the snow has caused problems around the area with roofs collapsing and structures fracturing. (Photo: AP/Gary Wiepert)

A western New York man may sue for fraud for allegedly being told by a claims representative that his homeowner’s insurance policy would not cover property damage that was caused by the 5- to 7-foot snowfall in a November 2013 storm, a federal judge ruled.

Nicholas Kraatz did not file a claim based on the conversation he said he had with the USAA Casualty Insurance Co. claims representative 12 days after the record-setting storm in the Buffalo area. Kraatz maintained that the representative told him that because of his high deductible — $8,040 — it was probably not in his best interests to file a claim.

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