This week the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans provided BP with a shocking reprieve from the requirement that the company pay businesses it had previously agreed to compensate under the terms of a settlement reached in 2012 over the oil major’s 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill. The result of the appellate court’s decision, overturning months of well reasoned orders from U.S. District Court Judge Carl Barbier, will be to at a minimum delay payments to legitimate claimants. There is significant concern that business owners who were harmed by the spill and filed claims as required by the agreement BP co-authored and agreed to will now receive nothing.
Many observers, including this author, have watched in frustration for months as BP has used a $500 million advertising budget to obscure the fact that the company is attempting to renege on its oft-stated “Commitment to the Gulf.” This while BP legal counsel says one thing to one judge and something else entirely to another.
The following report by CBS 4 New Orleans’ David Hammer puts it better than I can.
As a plaintiff attorney, Tom Young has been at the forefront of some of the Nation's worst disasters. In 2015, he was judicially appointed to represent over 200,000 plaintiffs in an allocation proceeding involving a $1.24 billion settlement with Deepwater Horizon contractor Halliburton and rig owner Transocean. Currently, he's focused on representing numerous communities across the country that have been ravaged by the opioid epidemic and are now seeking damages from drug manufacturers and distributors.