It is well known that the BP Deepwater Horizon oil spill, which occurred on April 20, 2010, caused immeasurable environmental damage to the Gulf region and took an immediate toll on the fishing and tourism industries. However, what has only recently been acknowledged by BP is that the oil spill left behind an enormous financial ripple effect for individuals, businesses and property owners in numerous other industries within the Gulf region, including all of Florida, over the last three years. BP’s recent acknowledgement for these economic losses has come in the form of one of the largest class action settlements ever reached in Civil Litigation.
On December 21, 2012, the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana approved the Economic and Property Damages Class Action Settlement Agreement, which provides billions for potential economic loss claimants. Yes, you read that correctly: billions. What is important to know is that the new settlement agreement fundamentally changes who qualifies for economic damages and how their claims are evaluated.
Unfortunately, most individuals and business owners, not in the fishing or tourism industries, are unaware that the settlement agreement exists or if they are included in the settlement agreement. The fact is, almost all industries in Florida are eligible. Under the settlement agreement, a possible claimant must fall under certain economic loss models to prove causation. These economic loss models are largely based upon a claimant’s geographic location and financial revenues, so every claim needs to be thoroughly evaluated. Even if a business, for example, does not believe that its revenues were directly effected by the oil spill, it may have a valid claim due to the indirect economic impact that the oil spill had on Florida’s economy over the last three years.
If you, your business, or your property have experienced a negative financial impact as a result of the BP Deepwater Horizon oil spill, please contact us to evaluate your claim for you.
*more information about the Court Supervised Settlement Program that will implement the settlement agreement is available at www.deepwaterhorizonsettlements.com.