Archive for 'Deepwater Horizon Settlement'

BP Claims Payment

BP CLAIMS PAYMENT AS GULF COAST CLAIMANTS WAIT FOR RELIEF, BP EXECUTIVES GET A PAY RAISE.

BP Claims PaymentAs Gulf Coast claimants wait to recover BP Claims Payment from the oil spill of 2010, the largest environmental disaster in history, the oil giant adds insult to injury by dramatically increasing the salaries of executives instead of paying the victims of the spill.  While many Gulf Coast claimants are still reeling from the effects of the spill, BP continues to be one of the most profitable companies in the world.  BP was so profitable in fact that BP CEO Robert Dudley received a pay raise worth triple from his total pay in 2012.  Counting salary, bonus, and stock options, Dudley’s compensation was $8.7 million. With his pension included, Dudley cleared $13.2 million. This is a little unsettling, to say the least, for local Gulf Coast companies who are STILL waiting for their BP Claims Payment and still trying to recover from the loss of business, homes, and jobs. BP appealed the settlement for the BP Claims Payment in late 2013, stating that losses were being claimed by companies whose losses did not originate from the spill.  Many suspect this is yet another stall tactic to avoid paying claimants, even though BP claims that they are “committed to paying all legitimate claims of real people who suffered real financial losses from the spill.” In December 2013, a judge said BP can’t change the interpretation of its settlement just because it is paying more for losses than it expected. That judge’s ruling was upheld in early March 2014. “The settlement agreement does not require a claimant to submit evidence that the claim arose as a result of the oil spill,” Circuit Judge Leslie Southwick wrote. Because of this, BP will have to stick to its original agreement

 

Even more unsettling is the amount of money BP is spending on PR, and the way they are trying to “shame and blame” the claimants.   “BP remains committed one of the ads reads. “But we will take whatever legal steps necessary to ensure that fraud is not rewarded and claims money goes to claimants who actually deserve it.”  So far, the above statement can be translated as “pay no one in order to avoid claimants committing fraud or getting money they don’t deserve.”  Sadly, many Gulf Coast residents and business owners would agree with that statement.

 

As they consider whether or not to appeal again BP Claims Payment, the effects of the 2010 disaster still linger in the Gulf. As of March 3, tar balls are still being collected from Florida beaches nearly four years after the spill. And recent research has found that chemicals in crude oil can be harmful to hearts of developing fish, meaning that any organism that swam near the Deepwater Horizon rig was exposed to cardiac risks.  We at BPClaims.org are committed to helping claimants navigate the economic and medical claims process, and most importantly making sure that claimants get the money they are entitled to.  After the latest ruling on BP Claims Payment, we are hopeful that some claims will get paid, and we thank the 5th Circuit Court and Judges like Leslie Southwick for forcing BP to “make it right” for the Gulf Coast claimants.

 

BP Payments Ordered to Resume?

The claimants of the Deepwater Horizon Economic Settlement celebrated a small victory earlier this month when it was decided in a 2:1 vote by the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals that BP will have to resume payments to victims of the oil spill.  Unfortunately, even though Judge Leslie Southwick ordered that BP will have to pay up under the terms of its agreement, many business owners are still waiting to get paid.

 

Back in December 2013, the 5th Circuit made a ruling that required Judge Barbier to halt payments temporarily in cases where causation was not proven until that particular rule was changed under a stay.  That stay, the judges noted, should be “tailored so that those who experienced actual injury traceable to loss from the Deepwater Horizon accident continue to receive recovery, but those who did not do not receive their BP Claims Payment until this case is fully heard and decided through the judicial process, including by any other panel of this court that resolves these issues.”  I think it is safe to say that the “stay” didn’t go as planned.  I say that because none of the businesses have been able to recover anything since the halt in payments.  It seems that BP’s solution to the problem of determining causation is this:  Don’t pay anyone!  Not one business claim has been paid since the 2013 payment halt.  Even companies who received an eligibility notice in late September 2013 are still waiting to receive their money.  BP even accepted releases on these claimants, but never issued a BP Claims Payment.

 

The problems surrounding the causation issue arose late 2013 after allegations were made that some BP Claims Payment were being issued to claimants who did not suffer an economic loss as a result of the oil spill.  Admittedly there may be some truth to those allegations; it is not always possible to distinguish if a loss came from the oil spill or just a bad economy.  In order to combat that problem, the settlement originally addressed the issue of causation by setting up requirements for a BP Claims Payment.  Causation is assumed based on where you live in the economic loss zones, what industry you are in, and the pattern of the company revenue post oil spill.  According to the 1,200-page agreement, if a business near the Gulf Coast can show its revenue dropped in 2010 then rebounded in 2011, it qualifies for compensation.  The companies are not required to prove a direct link to the spill. According to U.S. Circuit Judge Leslie Southwick in the latest BP ruling in March 2014, proving causation is not the job of the claimant nor is it to be considered a gatekeeping function of the claims administrator.   The settlement states specifically that claimants are not required to submit evidence that the claim arose as a result of the oil spill, and even though BP appealed this issue, the 5th Circuit is holding BP’s feet to the fire.  BP is going to be forced to uphold the settlement that they helped to create.

 

Since the halt in every BP Claims Payment, BP has launched a PR campaign designed to show that they have  “made it right” in the Gulf so to speak and also to point fingers at Gulf Coast residents,  alleging that many of the claims made as a result of losses incurred during the oil spill are fraudulent.  BP even took out full-page ads in several national newspapers to prove this point, but that doesn’t help the thousands of claimants who are still waiting for payment, it only serves to frustrate and anger everyone.

 

The appeal and halt in every BP Claims Payment may have had some unexpected result for BP.  In trying to avoid the payments using the “proof of causation” argument, BP may have actually hurt themselves in the doing.  In trying to limit the cost of the settlement reached in late 2012, they may have actually increased them when they decided to fight the issue of causation.  Back in 2012, BP estimated that the deal would cost the company $7.8 billion.  Now, the price tag could reach $9.2 billion or higher.  People and businesses making claims still have to attest that their financial losses were caused by the spill, but they do not have to submit actual “proof”. Judge Southwick writes “There is nothing fundamentally unreasonable about what BP accepted but now wishes it had not.”

 

Now that the issue of causation has been answered once and for all, this opens the door for all claimants claiming a “trickle down” effect loss, which in reality and according to the settlement, is a valid BP Claims Payment claim.  I expect to see more claimants now, but I do wonder if they are going to run into problems when they seek help through an attorney or a claims office.  BPClaims.org  is still accepting clients; we were there in the beginning, and we plan on staying until the end.  Unfortunately, many other firms have been forced to stop taking BP Claims because most of them are paid on a contingency basis.  The halt in payments have made it impossible for these firms to continue to pay office expenses and salaries associated with processing claims.  The December 2013 halt in payments hurt the claimants, is going to cost BP more in the long run, and helped BP succeeded in this:  the dramatic reduction of firms that were in business to assist the claimants.  That may not have been the intention, but it was one of the end results.

 

Meanwhile, the deadline for business BP Claims Payment is fast approaching. It was originally set for April 22, two days after the fourth anniversary of the Deepwater Horizon explosion. It now has been extended to late summer.  We at BPClaims.org  are still accepting claims, and we are still fighting for our clients.  Now that the order to resume payments has passed, we are cautiously optimistic and expect payments to resume for businesses by April 2014 on every BP Claims Payment.

 

Contact  BPCLAIMS.INFO by calling 1-800-272-5246 or 1-800-BPCLAIMS

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Polar Opposites: David Duval compared with Judge Edith Clement

BP SettlementThis morning I saw the second Freeh Report, which basically highlighted David Duval`s departure from the Deepwater Horizon Settlement.

It seems to me that the only chink in Mr. Duval’s armor was an email that he sent to his cousin regarding a panelists comments. Neither Mr. Duval or his cousin had any sort of monetary gain at stake from sending it, or reading it.

As the report noted, Mr. Duval was forthright immediately. As I understand it, he actually told the DWHS Leadership, and I will repeat this again, he had no financial gain whatsoever in sending this email to his cousin who is also an attorney.

He immediately resigned, as sending the email was contrary to an agreement that he had with the leadership of the Deepwater Horizon Settlement regarding confidentiality, and he wanted to avoid any hint of impropriety.

Now lets Compare Judge Clement’s Actions to David Duval’s

Let’s compare what happened to David Duval and how he dealt with it, versus what is going on with Judge Clement and her relationships with Big Oil.

Clement will not Leave the FREE organization (Foundation for the Environment and Economics)

Another opinion on F.R.E.E.

This is sourcewatch.org’s view of the FREE Organization -

Based out of Bozeman, Montana, FREE is a prime engine for free market environmentalism in the area of education.

The chairman, John Baden (a past member of the National Petroleum Council), preaches reliance on market mechanisms and private property rights, rather than on environmental law, for protection of the environment. Baden stresses decentralization – a shift of control from what he calls “Green platonic despots in D.C.” to “local interests.”

In reference to the agenda of FREE, Baden has written that it’s, “the norm among progressive, intellectually honest and successful environmentalists.”

One of the newest FREE plans is the “Charter Forest” project, in which national forests would no longer operate under the “multiple use” standard. Instead, each forest would be managed by whomever could make the greatest profit from it.

FREE has been offering all expense-paid trips to seminars for federal judges.

These seminars which feature such topics as “The Environment: A CEO’s Perspective” are usually held at private ranches or resorts in Montana with a plethora of amenities for the judges to enjoy. In the late 90′s, FREE bragged that nearly 1/3 of the federal judiciary had either attended or was seeking to attend one of their seminars.

The Koch Brother Support FREE:

This is from GREENPEACE

Koch Industries Climate Denial Front Group is the

Foundation for Research on Economics and the Environment (FREE)

GreenPeace reported that  FREE received $430,000 from Koch foundations 2005-2011 [Total Koch foundation grants 1997-2011: $1,525,000].
Peter Geddes, Executive Vice President of FREE, has advocated against taking action on climate change because warming is “inevitable” and expensive to address. In addition, FREE sponsors seminars for federal judges that have been criticized for creating judicial conflicts of interest.

It gets BETTER – guess who The Koch brothers do Business with, BP of course.

The Koch Brothers even pollute the environment with BP, just ask the residents on the East Side of Chicago. This was recently documented by the Huffington Post. Here is the article.

So Judge Clement who is a board member of FREE, who takes large donations from the Koch Brothers, who work with BP, and both pollute the environment.

It is Very Very Clear that Judge Clement has a conflict of interest here, she should not be in any way associated with BP. Yet the Companies who fund her organization work closely with BP.

For further clarification of the Junkets for Judges program and Judge Clements TAINTED relationship with FREE click here.

This is from their website

FREE’s mission is to imagine and implement an economic way of thinking that is consistent with a society of free and responsible individuals

In essence they are for deregulation of the Energy and Oil Industrial sector, but they do have a few noble endeavors towards helping wildlife, but don`t let that fool you. This is an organization with a lot of influence that works for Big Oil and their interests.

It is funded by Exxon/Mobil, the Koch Brothers,Texaco, Exxon, General Electric,  Monsanto, and Shell. They are the major players in the Oil and Gas Industry.

Judge Clement has a relationship with an organization which she has been asked to step down from by Committee on Codes of Conduct of the Judicial Conference of the United Stated District Court  other judges have stepped down from FREE, so that there would not be a conflict of interest. Judge Clement still participates in FREE  as a board member

Judge Clement appears to have a long-standing relationship with Big Oil she was appointed to  the bench by George W. Bush and we all know he loved big oil. Bush signed the most sweeping bill to deregulate oil in 2005. Judge Clement was assigned to the 5th Circuit in 2001. Do you think that George Bush had an agenda to advance Big Oils interests, YOU BET HE DID.

If you look at Judge Clement’s stock portfolio you will notice that many of her mutual funds have energy stocks within them, she had interest in BP stock until 2009 or so.

If you compare David Duval`s actions and voluntarily resigning, versus Judge Clement’s refusal to recuse herself after a relationship with FREE. They are polar opposite in terms of integrity.

It is clear that Mr Duval has taken the high road while Judge Clement stands firm with Big Oil, and this has negatively impacted the BP Claims Settlement, either by her own ideology which is why Bush appointed her, or because of her relationship with Big Oil or a combination there of.

It is very clear what her next move should be, and it is not hearing the next appeal, but to step down from FREE, and correct any public perception of impropriety .

We want to Hear From You

If you are involved with the DeepWater Horizon Settlement and would like to write a blog for this page please feel free to email us at Kathy@BPClaims.org.

You are welcome to visit our FaceBook page.

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Judge Edith Clement and Big Oil

“IS THE BP CLAIMS PROCESS BEING HIJACKED BY FRIENDS OF BIG OIL”

BP Claims and Judge Edith ClementOn Thursday morning, January 16, I was sent a link to an article written by James Gill of The Advocate in Baton Rouge.
The article was on  Judge Edith Clement, who is the 5th Circuit Judge that originally sided with BP, and will hear more of BP`s appeals in the very near future. 

The article points out that there may be a good reason that this judge, who seems to be very friendly to BP with her written opinions, is making the decisions that greatly benefit BP, and not the people that were financially harmed by the worst man-made disaster in U.S. history.

Judge Clement and FREE

The article points out that Judge Clement has for years been a board member one of the most active front organizations, for Big Oil and Energy. She is a board member of  The Foundation for Research into Economics and the Environment (a.k.a. FREE). This organization seems to be very pro big oil, as its chairperson, John Baden, is a past member of the National Petroleum Council.

As the article points out, Judge Clement’s picture is on the website, she is a board member. This group is funded by Big Oil and takes luxurious junkets yearly, one of the last ones being to Montana, it was estimated by an independent group that the cost per individual of that trip was 10,000 dollars a head. It is not clear where all of the funding for this group comes from but it is clear that, at least in part, it is funded by big oil. One of the major financial contributors is Exxon/Mobil.

Apparently sometime in 2005, Judge Andre M. Davis was a board member of this same group and someone filed a formal complaint citing the obvious conflict of interest. Judge Davis requested an opinion from the Committee on Codes of Conduct of the Judicial Conference of the United Stated District Court. Their opinion was issued on March 30, 2005 and it clearly explained that the honorable judge was violating several rules by being on the board of FREE. In a nut shell, the opinion was that the judge’s service on the board of this group calls into question the judge’s partiality on certain issues. Since the group is funded in part by “Big Oil” who would you think the judge would favor in a court case?

 The article goes on to explain that Douglas Kendall, the President of the Constitutional Accountability Center in Washington, DC, wrote to Clement pointing out the Judicial Conference of the United States had ruled that joining FREE’s board was against its code of conduct, she did not respond. Click here to read the letter to Judge Clement dated December 9, 2010.

She is still a member to this day and you can see a picture of her here, she is on the Board of DirectorsJUDGE EDITH CLEMENT FINANCIAL DISCLOSURES AND BP STOCK


If you look at Judge Clements 2011 financial disclosures here is a l link to them you will see how vested she is an energy stocks, specifically Vanguard which is as I understand is one of the largest stockholders of BP stock in the United States. Please understand, I am not saying any of the Vanguard mutual funds she owns has BP Stock in them, but should`nt this and her relationship with FREE at the very least be looked into.

Top Mutual Fund Holders of BP Stock according to Yahoo Finance.

Franklin Custodian Funds-Income Fund
Vanguard/Wellington Fund Inc.
Vanguard/Windsor II 15,549,869
Vanguard Specialized-Energy Fund
DFA International Value Series
American Mutual Fund Inc
Invesco Comstock Fd 4,826,424
American Beacon Large Cap Value Fd
Hartford Capital Appreciation Fund
Vanguard/Windsor Fund Inc

 

 Why does this matter?

In the judicial system of the United States, judges are required to recuse themselves (remove themselves from participating in a case), not only when they are biased, but even when they may appear biased to a neutral observer. This appearance-based recusal standard is intended to ensure the judge’s impartiality in resolving disputes, to protect the judiciary’s reputation, and to instill public confidence in the fairness of the courts.

 Just a side note here, George Busch appointed her, we know who he stands with, and that is Big Oil. Judge Clement also owned BP stock as late as 2009.

At this point, it appears many are questioning the impartiality of Judge Clement with regard to the BP case.

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The BP Settlement is Back ON

BP Settlement BP Settlement Resumes

I am pleased to tell everyone that the  BP SETTLEMENT  will resume. When? We really don`t know, but we are a whole lot closer. The 5th circuit judges as a majority, ruled in favor of Judge Barbier`s previous decisions. I speak for many when I tell you how pleased we all are.

We Thank The 5TH Circuit for actually “Making it Right” and for Judge Barbier and Patrick Juneau for having it RIGHT the whole time. We further appreciate Judge Barbier and Patrick Juneau for sticking to their guns, and holding BP accountable.

The Fifth Circuit Judges “Made it Right” by lifting the stay for Business Economic Losses or BEL`s imposed by a previous 5TH Circuit Panel.

BP was in a no lose position

Either BP could  stall the settlement,  or get it thrown out, they stalled. As BP stalled the settlement for the last several months, you need to wonder how much money BP accrued through its holdings during that time. How much money did BP save during this period, and how much did BP make with the money they should have been paying oil spill claims with.

Barbier and Juneau had it Right from the Start

Juneau and Judge Barbier  had it right from the beginning. BP had made an agreement that showed causation through the V test and other models and they were bound by the terms of that agreement.

In reality all this is was, was another stall tactic by BP.

There is no doubt that we’ve seen this before during the GCCF days and the BP settlement era. What it comes down to is, it just takes more time for people to get paid, and some people with VALID BP Claims will just let their claims go, and let BP off the hook, , they wore them down, don`t let them.

Some BP Claims /CPA`s /Processors/Attorneys/have Quit handling BP Claims

As part of the collateral damage many groups just could not afford to process BP claims anymore, or just elected not to. It is difficult to justify a continual expenditure on BP claims that just don`t seem to get paid. By BP continually stalling it, put many groups in a tough financial position.

Other issues are that many CPA groups, specifically the smaller ones are not staffed to handle BP claims and the regular accounting load. and these guys are now heading into tax season.

If you are a a group or firm that needs help with it`s BP Claims Case load call 1-800-BP-CLAIM. We have other processors and attorney`s that would be happy to work something out with you.
The  BP claims processes was meant to to get people paid. Plain and simple, not get blocked by BP every step of the way.
BP`s strategy revealed  they would use of the Delay, Deny and Defend strategy.  This is the standard strategy by unscrupulous insurance companies and BP.

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BP Settlement Still Under Fire from BP

When will BP Stop Trying to delay the BP Settlement?

bp settlement logoBP is at it again. After twice asking for a halt on all payments until the internal investigation within the BP settlement has concluded, Judge Barbier has ordered the BP Claims Administrator to respond to BP’s most recent request by August 26,2013.

If BP’s request is granted, payments to all claimants will be halted indefinitely. This is just what BP is hoping for.

Dirty Deeds Being done in the BP Settlement

We believe that certain Attorneys are trying to put an end to the settlement so they have the ability to litigate in court and charge 30-40% fees to claimants. In reality all the claimants want is a fair BP settlement and justice for their families and communities. Some attorneys on the other hand want as much of a cut they can get.

We also believe BP is trying to end the settlement, even though they are the ones that set it up with terms and guidelines to which they had previously agreed. BP has now seen that their initial projections of the actual dollar amount to be contributed to the BP settlement on their behalf were probably far too low.  They are paying out more than they ever expected to, and they are not happy.

Are BP and certain attorneys working together to dissolve the settlement? We don’t know, but it does seem that they have a common interest; MONEY.

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BP Settlement News

BP Settlement NewsBP’s new Advertising Campaign paints them as the victim of the Oil Spill incident, trying to discourage the filing of future BP Claims. 

It seems as if BP will try just about anything to stop paying out BP Claims. Their new full-page ads in The Wall Street Journal and New York Times are stating that many lawyers and claimants whose losses are not spill-related are benefiting from the settlement.

Establishing the new “BP Fraud-Hotline” is another scare tactic the company is using to deter claimants from filing. This hotline is for “people that want to do the right thing by reporting fraud or corruption” in any step of the claims filing process. Even though many believe the monkey business that was going on behind the scenes of the settlement was an isolated incident, BP is trying to scare people away from filing claims with the threat of being found guilty of fraud.

The Truth behind the BP Settlement

The truth of the matter is that BP AGREED to this court supervised settlement. THEY set up the guidelines and parameters. THEY established the affected “Economic Loss Zones” and determined the percent of decline and incline in revenue needed to prove the claimant’s causation.

Their negligence and greed caused the biggest oil spill disaster in history, they should be held accountable, and they should certainly be held accountable to pay the qualifying claims under the settlement they AGREED to.

BP’s tactic is delay, deny, and defend.

They delay BP Claim payment with incompleteness notices, document investigation processes, and appeals.

They deny BP Claims when they are missing one piece of documentation that is not accounted for.

They defend themselves by continually asking the courts to stall payments so they can keep gaining interest on the remaining amount left in the settlement.

They’ve asked to exclude certain industries from the settlement numerous times.

The fact of the matter is BP agreed to the terms of the Court Supervised Settlement. It was written to pay BP Claims which meet certain guidelines, and to exclude certain entities as well. Thus far, their efforts to change the guidelines of the settlement have been unsuccessful. They cannot rewrite the settlement they agreed to. If they are somehow able to change the settlement in their favor, something needs to be done for those that lost everything but were outside of a zone, or those who took quick pays for much less than they deserved when they had no other choice.

BPClaims.org is here to help with your BP Settlement

We are on your side. We fight for the people of the gulf. We know what BP is doing, and that they are trying to paint themselves to be the victims of fraudulent claims. Their greed and negligence took 11 lives in 2010. Who were the victims then? Who are the true victims? So many have lost their livelihood and health because of this disaster. BP is just a big corporation trying to keep their money in their pockets

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Halliburton Pleads Guilty

Halliburton Pleads Guilty to Destroying Evidence

Halliburton Pleads GuiltyHalliburton, BP’s cement contractor from the drilling rig that exploded in April 2010, has pled guilty to destroying evidence in connection to the Gulf Oil Spill.

This is the third company that has pled guilty to the conditions surrounding the oil spill. Halliburton is the world’s second-largest oil field services company, and will be required to pay a maximum $200,000 fine in relation to this misdemeanor. (Roughly four minutes worth of revenue for the company)

Halliburton voluntarily paid out $55 million dollars to the National Fish and Wildlife Fund to try and gain some clout with the public and clear their name. However, seeing that this is a non-profit organization, it will likely result in a tax write off for the company.

Following the rupture of the Macondo oil well, the explosion of the Deepwater Horizon rig triggered the largest offshore oil spill in history and left 11 dead. The ripple effects of the spill destroyed and devastated the environment and the economy of the Gulf Coast.

The allegations in the case were that during the creation of the Macondo well, Halliburton recommended to BP that it contain 21 centralizers. Centralizers are metal collars that can improve cementing, thus making the well more secure. However, BP chose to use just 6 centralizers. After the blowout, the government probed into the cementing of the well and this is when Halliburton ordered computer simulations showing little difference in using 6 centralizers and 21 centralizers to be destroyed. Government efforts to later locate these simulations were unsuccessful.

The Department of Justice still may pursue criminal charges against individuals involved in destroying evidence, but a spokeswoman for the company does not believe that will be the case.

It is surprising the government would accept a plea for such a minor charge, given the oil spill was one of the worst in history. This ruling is in stark contrast to the Enron market manipulation a decade ago, where destruction of evidence led to multiple felonies including obstruction of justice.

Yet again, more evidence of the US government taking it easy on big corporations. Maybe not so surprising as former Halliburton CEO Dick Cheney was responsible for obtaining multiple contracts for the company while holding federal government positions.  How can this ruling be impartial? It seems those who are a part of the law sure know how to get around it.

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Receive the BP Settlement You Deserve

How can you receive the BP Settlement you deserve?

BP Settlement ProtestersNot only did the April 2010 BP oil spill cause extreme damage and devastation to the environment, it also had a ripple effect throughout the entire economy of the Gulf Coast of the United States.  Businesses and Individuals in the affected areas saw a decline in revenue and earnings following the incident as a direct result of the lack of tourism, rising prices of seafood, and many other factors.  The first response for economic reimbursement was the GCCF, later replaced by the BP Settlement which now oversees all claims.

How do I know if I qualify to file a  BP claim?

To be eligible to file a valid BP Settlement claim, a business or an individual’s business address must fall within one of the specified BP Economic Loss Zones. The claimant must also make sure that the nature of their business is not included on the list of ineligible entities. At this point, financial documentation will need to be provided to prove the loss.

BP Settlement Individual Claims

Individual claimants will need to provide tax documents and pay period earning statements from at least 2009-2011 to show that their hours or wages were reduced as a direct result of the spill. Most individuals also will need to establish an eligible employer by having an authorized business representative submit a sworn statement that the employee’s financial losses were directly related to the spill.

The amount of compensation an individual can expect to receive is directly correlated to the amount of money they lost in the compensation period as compared to the benchmark period. Therefore, every payout will vary on a claim to claim basis.

BP Settlement Business Claims

Businesses outside of Zone A must prove their damages by passing a causation test. The causation test is an algorithmic calculation which uses financial figures from a business’s monthly profit and loss statements to determine the eligibility of the claim. This test uses the provided figures to try to find a certain percentage of decline in revenue in the months following the spill in 2010, as compared to those same months in 2009. The financials should also show a certain percentage of uptake in those same months in 2011. The percentage of decline in 2010 and incline in 2011 that are needed to pass the “V-trend test” will vary based upon which geographical zone the businesses address falls within.

The amount of compensation a business can expect to receive is based upon which zone the business is located in, the nature of the business as evidenced by the NACIS code, and the amount of loss in the compensation period. Once again, the amount of compensation will vary on a claim by claim basis, as many factors come into play for business claims.

Is there a quick way to find out my eligibility?

For a BP Settlement business claim, we can run the basic financials through our preliminary calculator and quickly determine if the claim passes causation or if it does not. For a preliminary calculation we would need:

The business address
NAICS Code
Monthly Gross Revenue for Jan 2007-Dec 2011

If the business passes causation we would then need further documentation to calculate the businesses estimated compensation amount and to make the claim complete under the guidelines of the Deepwater Horizon Settlement.

Do I Need to Hire a Professional?

It is not completely necessary to hire a professional. Many people file claims on their own without representation. However, there are many reasons why you might choose to seek guidance on this matter. We hear from business and individual claimants every day who have filed claims on their own and are being delayed with multiple incompleteness notices and are frustrated and fed-up.

The Court-Supervised 1,300 page BP Settlement is an extremely detailed and convoluted document which can be overwhelming and disheartening to those who have no prior experience with the legal components that professionals are equipped to handle.

What Services do we offer?

Our team of experts helps you gather and prepare the needed documents for review. The claim is then assessed for eligibility, completeness and validity. Business claims are calculated either by a CPA or under the direct supervision of a CPA to ensure accuracy of the expected compensation figure. At this time the complete claim will be filed.

Once the claim is filed to the Deepwater Horizon Settlement, should there be any discrepancies regarding paperwork or financials, we work with the client to handle all incompleteness notices, requests for reconsideration, re-reviews, appeals, and denial notices. Clients may always feel free to contact us regarding the status of their claim, and know that we notify them immediately when we have any deadlines pending.

How do I begin the process of filing my claim?

There is only a short time remaining to file all claims to the Deepwater Horizon Settlement, the deadline being April 22, 2014. Call us today for a free claim assessment. If you have your preliminary documents in order, we may be able to quickly run a calculation to determine your eligibility. Call 1-800-BP-CLAIM or complete the BP Settlement form on the right and someone contact you shortly thereafter.

 
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Deepwater Horizon Settlement Outline

deepwater horizon settlement imageOutline of the Deepwater Horizon Settlement

The Court-Supervised Deepwater Horizon Settlement was set forth to compensate businesses and individuals that were financially harmed by the oil spill explosion caused by BP in April of 2010. BP has estimated the costs related to compensating claims to be 7.8 billion dollars; however, there is no cap on the total amount that will be paid out. The total amount of compensation will depend upon the number of qualifying claims that receive an offer. Therefore, the estimated 100,000 claims being filed may end up receiving less than the 7.8 billion dollars that has been set aside, or more.

Is anyone excluded from filing to the Deepwater Horizon Settlement?

There are certain industries that BP has excluded from the Settlement. Those who owned a business in or worked within any of the industries listed below are ineligible to file claims to the Deepwater Horizon Settlement.

  • Governmental Organizations
  • Real Estate Developers
  • Insurance Entities
  • Financial Institutions, Funds, Financial Trusts, and other Financial Vehicles
  • Oil and Gas Industry Entities
  • Entities selling or marketing BP-branded fuel
  • Gaming and Casino Entities
  • Those who chose to exclude themselves from the Economic Class
  • Those that were required to file under the Oil Pollution Act

How can I determine my eligibility to file a claim?

Businesses and Individuals in almost any other industry may be eligible to file a claim providing the physical address of their business or employer from the time of the spill falls within one of the designated “Economic Loss Zones”. These are geographic regions that have been recognized by BP as areas that were either directly or indirectly affected by the spill.

How can I determine my business loss?

After you have determined that your business was located within an Economic Loss Zone, it will be time to take a look at your financials.

All businesses, (except those located in Zone A) will need to prove their damages (causation) by showing a specific percentage of lost revenue, lost variable profit, and loss of potential revenue growth in the selected months of 2010, as compared to the same months in the benchmark period. They will also need to show a specific amount of uptake in those same months in 2011. This revenue pattern is referred to as the V-trend and if the financial documents follow this pattern, the business automatically proves causation.

What documents do I need to provide for a Deepwater Horizon Settlement claim evaluation?

The initial causation test is a complex, formulaic calculation which can quickly determine whether your business qualifies under the settlement, and roughly how much compensation you are eligible to receive. The preliminary test requires the following:

  • Business Address
  • NAICS code
  • Gross Revenue Statements from Jan 2007- Dec 2011 (or a minimum of Jan 2009-Dec 2011)

After this calculation, if it is determined that the claim is valid, additional paperwork will be needed to make the claim complete under the guidelines of the Deepwater Horizon Settlement.

Why Should I Seek the Help of a  Deepwater Horizon Settlement Claims Preparer?

The Court-Supervised Settlement Agreement is a 1,300 page document filled with complexities and intricacies that can be confusing and frustrating to those with no experience in this field.

Our team of experts prepares and files claims that have been checked for accuracy and validity. We help the client prepare all necessary documents and ensure the claim is complete before it is filed.

Our financial calculations are preformed either by a CPA, or under the direct supervision of a CPA, to ensure we come as close to the actual compensation amount as possible.

Should there be any discrepancies from the settlement once the claim has been filed, we handle all incompleteness notices, appeals, re-reviews, reconsiderations, or denials in a timely manner.

We fight for our clients and push the claim as far as it can possibly go within the Deepwater Horizon settlement. If the claim cannot proceed any further, and the claimant does not receive a settlement, they owe us nothing.

Time is Limited – Act Now!

If you have your paperwork ready, we can quickly calculate whether or not your business qualifies under the guidelines of the settlement. Time is running low; with the deadline to file all claims being April 22, 2014. The more quickly we can gather the documents, evaluate and file the claim, the more quickly it can be reviewed and paid out through the settlement.

If you’ve ever wondered if you qualify to file a BP Claim and you have the preliminary documents at hand, call us today or fill out the form on this page to speak to claims representative immediately.  Help is just a phone call away.

Author:
BP Claims Advisers LLC

The GCCF v.s. The BP Settlement

bp settlementDid all of your friends receive BP Settlement Payouts with little or no supporting documentation for their claim?

Did you work for a company where all of the other employees received compensation except for you?

Was your BP claim denied for no reason?

It is important to understand that before the Deepwater Horizon Economic Settlement came into play, there was a different group responsible for compensating businesses and individuals for losses incurred from the April 2010 oil spill. This was the GCCF, not the BP Settlement.

The Gulf Coast Claims Facility offered quick payments to individuals and businesses along the gulf coast and forced them to sign releases not to sue BP again in the future. Some people received settlements by submitting minimal to no documentation, while others that did the same job for the same company received nothing. 

Unfortunately, no one actually knows what guidelines the GCCF was using in regards to their payouts, which is probably one of the reasons they no longer exist today. At this time, anyone who signed a full and final release with GCCF may not file another claim for the same business or individual.

If you were denied by the GCCF, we may still be able to help you under the terms of the BP Settlement.

If you never updated your GCCF Claim, you need to do so to be a part of the Deeepwater Horizon Settlement.

The Deepwater Horizon Economic Settlement, which took over after the GCCF was shut down, was set up with very specific guidelines which the claims administrators follow down to the tee.

Most of the time, detailed, full documentation is now required for both business and individual claims. This is not to say that it is impossible to supply the needed documents; our office receives multiple settlement offers per week for both businesses and individuals. This just means that to present a valid claim to the settlement reviewers, you must provide the documents they are looking for. There are instances when workarounds are possible.

BP Settlement Help

BPClaims.org and our network partners work closely to prepare and file thousands of claims. We help our clients understand the process and paperwork they will need to provide to ultimately receive a payout. We know this can be a frustrating and confusing process and we work hard to help alleviate the stress that comes along with it.

We work with:

  • Business Owners
  • CPA`s
  • Individuals
  • Non-profits
  • Law Firms
  • VOO Claimants
  • and anyone else affected by the BP Oil Spill

When it comes to the help we provide for a BP Settlement, we do all that we can, including but not limited to:

  • Helping clients prepare and file valid claims
  • Responding to Incompleteness and Follow-up Incompleteness notices
  • Filing appeals to BP
  • Responding to appeals made by BP
  • Filing Medical Claims
  • Looking deeply into Denied Claims

If you or your business was truly affected by the oil spill, we can help you gather the needed documentation, process and file your claim. Please contact us today to get started.

Also for the latest news on the BP Settlement, visit our news page here.

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