A Louisiana federal judge has ruled that BP has until Aug. 26, 2015 to pay local municipalities that accepted settlement offers stemming from the company’s Deepwater Horizon oil spill.
Judge Carl Barbier issued the order that BP must pay out the settlements within their entirety within the next 30 days. BP’s $18.7 billion settlement of claims with the federal government, in July 2015, included $1 billion to settle claims with local municipalities.
Approximately 22 New Orleans-area municipalities agreed to settlements by July 17 that had totaled nearly $250 million. However, Plaquemines Parish and the Town of Jean Lafitte refused settlements. Both say what was offered was too little compared to the damages the areas suffered.
One of the highest accepted settlements went to Jefferson Parish along with the Jefferson Parish School Board; the sum of the settlement is $85.8 million. The smallest settlement accepted was by the Port of Plaquemines.
Some municipalities settled with BP before the agreement was announced. Gulf Shores and Foley settled with BP in 2012 for $6.5 million and $865,000. Baldwin County settled with BP that same year for $11.5 million, with $3 million going to its school system.
BP’s agreement last month to settle claims covered federal, state and local claims. Federal and state payments may be made over the next two decades, however, the local claims must now be settled much sooner. Still, the company faces numerous lawsuits filed by shareholders, businesses and residents who opted out of a class-action settlement reached in 2012.
If you or someone you know has been the victim of a careless oil company, contact the experienced oil contamination attorneys at Simien & Simien. With oil and gas drilling booming in the state, our lawyers are ready to help residents whose property, or health, has been damaged by negligent oil and gas companies.
For a free review of your claim, call (800) 374-8422.