Oil Spill Victims

Getting Compensation for the BP Oil Spill

Posted by on Apr 2, 2014 in Oil Spill Victims | 0 comments

It can be very hard to fight against a big corporation, and they don’t get much bigger than British Petroleum (BP). They have the power and the capacity to meet any legal challenge that may come their way. For a while, it seemed that BP would do the right thing for the victims of the BP oil spill caused by the malfunction of the Deepwater Horizon offshore oil drilling rig on April 20, 2010 by pledging billions in a settlement fund specifically aimed to compensate for individual and business economic losses.

Initially, the Gulf Coast Claims Facility handled claims, but predictably, BP complained about how it was being managed, and it was replaced by a court-supervised Economic and Property Damage Class Action Settlement Agreement that took effect on 18 April 2012, nearly two years after the disaster. The delays from the legal wrangling have only made a bad situation worse for victims of the oil spill, who can only wait and hope that they will eventually get compensation. But according to the website of law firm Williams Kherkher, it takes a concerted effort to get any claim past the BP approval and appeals process. Claimants who are clueless about how to file a claim are most likely to be denied.

Criminal charges have already been filed against former BP executive David Rainey, engineer Kurt Mix as well as site supervisors Donald Vidrine and Robert Kaluza, indicating the culpability of BP as well as partners Transocean which actually owned the oil rig and Haliburton, the US contractor that ran the rig operations. But even then, more than 75% of individuals and business owners who make a claim for economic losses over a certain amount are initially denied, and the claims process has very strict guidelines. It is only with the help of competent and experienced lawyers that have successfully handled such cases before that there is any real chance of getting compensation.

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